1. Get right with God – the first step in spiritual preparedness
This might be a no brainer as the article addresses spiritual preparedness and Christian Preppers. But we should take time to make sure our hearts are right with the Lord. Have we allowed other things to become more important to us (even preparedness), than our relationship with the Lord? This is personal and something only you and the Lord knows. You might even want to pray the Psalmists words, “Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way. (Psalms 139:23-24 NASB)
2. Read the Bible Daily
The Bible is God’s Word to us! It helps us to understand God’s character and how He relates to His creation. But it is even more! Ephesians 6:17 calls the Word of God the Sword of the Spirit. Hebrews 4:12 calls the Word of God a two-edged sword. A sword is an offensive weapon (of the time).
In an age when we have more Bible tools and resources than ever, many Believers don’t read their Bible daily. As a result, they are not able to go to war when they face the onslaught of the enemy. Remember, when satan tempted Jesus (Matthew 4:1-11), Jesus didn’t have a conversation with the devil! Instead, Jesus quoted Scripture. Jesus fought off the temptation of the devil with Scripture – spiritual preparedness perfection!
Reading the Bible doesn’t have to be difficult. If you find the text too Shakespearean, get a more modern day version, like the Holman Christian Standard Bible. But just read it! If you don’t know where to start, watch the video below. I made it a while back to help others start reading the word of God!
When Jesus would disappear, the disciples always knew where to find Him, somewhere praying! Mark 1:35-37 NASB says, In the early morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house, and went away to a secluded place, and was praying there. Simon and his companions searched for Him; they found Him, and said to Him, “Everyone is looking for You.”
As a pastor, I have found that there are two major issues with Christian prayer. The first is that Christians just don’t pray unless something bad happens. The second is that Christians use prayer to give the Lord a long list of needs and wants. The thing is God isn’t a Cosmic Santa Claus. But He does answer prayer!
Prayer is a two way communication. Imagine if your communication with your spouse was always just one-way. That wouldn’t work very long! When we pray, we need to ask the Lord for what we need, but also listen for what He will say. This is important to spiritual preparedness!
My favorite book on prayer is by Jim Cymbala, Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire. If you’ve never read it, you’ll be inspired to pray and seek the Lord more.
4. Connect with other Christians is also key to Spiritual Preparedness
The Christian faith isn’t a solo endeavor! From the very beginning, Believers met together in upper rooms, from home to home, in the Temple, on the shore, wherever. But they did it together!
When Christians don’t gather with other Believers, they are missing out on the mutual encouragement that coming together brings. Paul said in Romans 1:11-12 NASB, “For I long to see you so that I may impart some spiritual gift to you, that you may be established; that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other’s faith, both yours and mine.”
I often hear from Believers who live in smaller towns with just a handful of churches who really aren’t preaching the Word. My reply is to continue to go to the church, pray for the Holy Spirit to get a hold of the pastor, but more importantly, build relationships with other Christians.
Just like it is important to connect with other preppers who understand you, it is important to connect with Christians who you can rely on when times are good, or if they get rough.
5. Reach out to non-believers who are hurting and need encouragement.
As the world gets crazier, non-believers will find themselves in situations where they are hurting: mentally, physically, socially and in need of encouragement. Christian Preppers, more than any others, know the trials and potential for chaos in the days we live in.
As we manage the craziness for our own families, we should always be aware of those around us who need help. You never know how a helping hand, an encouraging word, or giving a spare bag of rice could move someone closer to accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
As believers, we should always be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and how we are led to minister and reach out to others, even in crazy times.
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6. Reach out to your pastor and church leaders
Many believe that because pastors are on “the stage” every Sunday morning that they are popular or have some sort of notoriety. The truth is that being a pastor can be a very lonely position. People love you until you say something from the pulpit they don’t like. Then they leave the church and you don’t even know why.
Pastors always have to be “on”, encouraging others, even while they go through their own struggles. In an SHTF situation, that could mean that they are ministering to others, while their families are going through the same SHTF situation.
As a result, don’t assume that your pastor doesn’t need encouragement from time to time. Send them an email or a nice note. Unless they are preaching heresy, give them the benefit of the doubt when you hear something you don’t agree with. Actually, you should be looking in the Scripture yourself and making sure things are Biblical vs just your opinion, especially if you are planning on leaving the church. Spiritual preparedness is important for your pastor too!
7. Share the Gospel online
I have a love-hate relationship with social media. In, Preppers and Social Media – Maybe It’s Time to Get Anti-Social, I shared how I was concerned with the amount of data they gather from users. But even with the warnings out there, many still continue to use the big social media platforms. As a result, it is a place where many people congregate.
I have chosen to use my Facebook account to share a daily devotional that I write from my own personal devotions. I also use Facebook to do a LIVE Thursday Devotional for the church, as well as broadcast LIVE on Sunday mornings during the Coronavirus situation.
I have heard from many people how devotionals touch them and help them focus on the Lord. And that is the important piece. I believe that Christian Preppers should use social media to plant seeds out there as much as possible. With all the junk out there, we can be a light, shining in the darkness. Matthew 5:16 NASB says, “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”
8. Support your Church – If you can
As our world continues to get crazier, especially in the economic and financial sense, church members will give less and less to their local church. This is understandable as church members deal with the challenges of a weak economy. But it is also important to remember that this is also devastating to pastor’s and church staff salaries. And, please note, that many in ministry don’t make a lot as it is. Yes, there are those on TV who bring in the millions, but that isn’t your local pastor.
If you can, please continue to support your local church. Churches will cut back their staff, salaries and many will go without or lose their jobs. But in a time where the economy isn’t doing well, it will be hard for ministers to find other jobs and provide for their families.
If you can’t support your pastor financially, there might be other ways you could support them. For example, could you provide a meal, share some groceries or offer to do some chores that might help them? If you can’t do anything like this or something similar, please pray for them. They always need prayer!
9. Refocus at night with something God focused
I like the idea of starting my morning with the Bible and prayer and ending with something spiritual that helps to refocus my thoughts, even as I go to sleep, on the Lord. With today’s technology, we have a plethora of ways to refocus our evenings on the Lord and stay spiritually prepared.
YouTube has sermons from some of the greats. Consider a sermon by A.W. Tozer, Leonard Ravenhill or Corrie Ten Boom. Every church puts their sermons online now. You used to have to pay for the “tape ministry,” but now you get it all for free! And there are a ton of devotionals online that you can get right in your email and read it right on your phone before you shut your eyes. Consider Oswald Chamber’s, My Utmost for His Highest.
Conclusion – Add Spiritual Preparedness
Christian Preppers are not only preparing for the next big emergency, we are also preparing for eternity. It’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of this world, but we need to remember where our true home is and what ultimately matters. It doesn’t matter how much you prep, this life is still temporary. And preparing for the next life is something we should be doing even more as the day approaches. To your preparedness, make sure you also increase your spiritual preparedness.
Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NASB