This week the news has been filled with stories pertaining to Hurricane Matthew which is a very strong hurricane. I live in an area which experiences the occasional hurricane, our last one was a Category 4 and made landfall just over 8 years ago. I understand what the people in the path of the storm do before, during, and after.
When a hurricane is predicted to make landfall in our area, most of us make preparations. We board up windows, move birdbaths and lawn furniture to the garage so they will not become projectiles, buy bottled water, non-perishable food, batteries, and fill our bathtubs with water (so we can flush toilets). We fill our cars' gas tanks, go to the bank and withdraw some cash because we might be without electricity for a day or 6 weeks. Filling the tub with water is the last thing I do. My husband says it is not real until I fill the bathtub.
After the last hurricane, we were thankful we had no major damage and were amazed by the quiet because there were no air conditioners running (no electricity and generators were not running...yet), no trains because the tracks were covered with debris. Hurricanes are loud. So the quiet afterward is almost too much to absorb. We embraced our neighbors before and after the storm and were so thankful to see everyone had only minor damage. Houses 5 miles away were flattened. You just never know what will happen with a hurricane and you try to prepare for all possibilities.
We need to approach our spiritual lives with the same care and a plan. The Bible tells us to put on our armor, it does not say you might need a weapon every 8 years. In Ephesians 6, Pauls tells us:
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.
We prepare for the storms of life with prayer and time in the Word. We need to keep our eyes on our Lord Jesus and eternity, heavenly treasures not earthly treasures, or politics, or reality TV which is anything but real. If we have time to peruse catalogs and veg out for hours in front of the Tube we have time to read the Bible and to pray. We need to prioritize and make a few changes to our schedules.
Sometimes our schedule gets out of balance due to circumstances beyond our control, we become accustomed to it and get in a rut which keeps them unbalanced. Take an honest look at how you can tweak your schedule to spend more time with the Lord.
You never know when the Lord will call you like He did Esther for such a time as this...