Yesterday morning a tropical storm warning was issued for Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, and by the early afternoon it was changed to a hurricane watch. Right now this isn’t too serious since if a hurricane hits it would be a category one which just means lots of rain and wind. However that doesn’t mean you don’t prepare for the worst.
By now I’ve been through enough tropical storms to know how to prepare for them:
- Set aside as much water as possible because thats usually the first thing that’s turned off
- Get enough food for at least a few days
- Keep your phone almost fully charged at all times and flashlights nearby [there will be a power outage]
- And be prepared to spend a few days mostly at home
The truth is things like this tropical storm don’t worry me too much because there is time to prepare for it. The storms that you should worry about are the ones that come without warning.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines had a very heavy storm (it would probably be referred to as a tropical storm) shortly after Christmas in 2010. If I understand correctly, the storm came the day after Christmas without warning. Many people were celebrating with friends at the sea, or in town so when the storm came it caught everyone by surprise. Though property damage was done, the greatest effect was people didn’t have the necessary food, or water for days.
This led people to begin taking storm preparation seriously. They will catch rain water, fill barrels with tap water ahead of time, and make sure that extra food like canned goods is set aside. While experiencing my first tropical storm around four years ago, I was told to fill up buckets with water by seven or eight people!
If only being prepared for the trials and temptations of life would be that easy…..
while being prepared for a physical storm is quite simple, the spiritual storms of life take much more than a barrel of water, and some canned goods.
We’ve all experienced the unexpected storm that attacks us out of nowhere.
That unexpected phone call….
That extra expense you don’t have money for…
That strong relationship that is suddenly broken…
While we can’t prepare for everything, the good news is that we CAN be prepared for the storms one life! This is done not by relying on ourselves, but abiding in Christ.
Paul in Colossians 2:4-7 encourages the Believers to remain firmly planted in the Lord
Col. 2:4 And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words. 5 For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ. 6 As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: 7 Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.
Though the immediate context is about guarding against false doctrine, it can also be applied to a life of faithfulness to Christ. Being rooted or stablished (firm) in Him means to stay as close as possible to the Lord, spending as much time as we can in Him.
So those who remain close to Christ grow to be strong oak trees while those who rely on themselves are small weak saplings. We therefore must be close to the Lord NOW so that we are ready for what comes
Life has a way of revealing who is an oak tree and who is a sapling. May we prepare ourselves for the storms that come without warning, and stand firm while others are blown away by the wind.