Simple & Easy – Emergency Preparedness
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Sign of the Times

Sign of the Times

Growing up in the Central United States, one tends to learn rather quickly that Mother Nature has a mind of her own. A morning’s beautiful blue sky can by mid-afternoon turn into a raging storm with damaging hail, lightening, and fierce winds. In those moments, my family would gather around the TV in our front room, eyes and ears glued to the local weather station. We listened to their warnings on when and where the storm would hit, and quickly implemented any admonitions they had to better protect our home.

It was in preparing that we found strength, peace, and safety from the storm.

As Latter-day Saints, we also have voices of warning to heed. The Lord, who knows when and where the storms of life will come, tells us that his “voice of warning shall be unto all people, by the mouths of (his) disciples, whom (he has) chosen in these last days” (D&C 1:4).

One only has to turn on the TV or pick up a newspaper to learn of “famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places” (JS-M 1: 29). The Lord, in His tender mercy, has sought to prepare us against the tough times ahead. Though it is common for us to pray “that no harm or accident will come upon us,” the Lord has cautioned that “the saints also shall hardly escape;” (D&C 63:34).

In anticipation of the potential emergencies that may occur in our lives, the prophets have instructed us to become self-reliant in the areas of education and literacy; physical health; employment; home storage; resource management; and spiritual, emotional, and social strength (see Church Handbook of Instructions, Book 2, 257–58). As with any commandment, the accompanying blessings are dependent upon our faithful diligence to obey.

Indeed, the scriptures are full of examples of individuals, and sometimes entire peoples, whose preparations brought about both temporal and spiritual salvation.

Think of Captain Moroni instructing the Nephites to strengthen their cities and homes (Alma 48:7-9) or of Noah building the Ark before the Flood (Genesis 7). Perhaps more appropriate are the examples of Joseph in Egypt and his plan to lay up in store against the oncoming famine (Genesis 41) and Lachoneus’ efforts to gather his people in against the Gaddianton Robbers (3 Nephi 3) .

We would do well to follow the important insight we gain from these stories in that the decision to prepare was made when the skies were clear, the battlefields quiet, and the fields full of grain. Through preparation and self-reliance, we too can find shelter from unexpected trials for “that which we sow, we also shall reap.” (See Gal. 6:7.)

As we seek to make our homes places of safety, both spiritually and temporally, let us stand assured that every righteous measure we take is counted in Heaven. It is through these efforts, with faith in the Lord, we can “(s)tand firm and see the salvation of (God)” (Exodus 14:13), for “if (w)e are prepared (w)e shall not fear.”

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