Residents of coastal Alabama are familiar with billboards which proclaim: “The first seventy-two are on you.” The billboard means that in the event of a hurricane, you won’t have much help for the first three days.
After going through Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath in 2005, I attest to the truthfulness of that statement. We had ample help after day four but days 1-3 were difficult.
You may not live in hurricane territory (the residents of New Jersey probably thought they didn’t before Superstorm Sandy), but you should be ready for crises. Difficult times are certain to come from time to time. In this world we will have ample difficulty.
What can you do to get prepared?
First, establish a plan and follow it. Know how and where your family will meet after a crisis. Put in place a plan for communication. Having a plan everyone is familiar with will help make whatever difficulty you experience easier.
Second, make sure you have physical items you need for emergencies. Bottled water and canned foods are easy to keep. You never know when a bottle of water will come in handy.
Third, make sure you have backups of essentials such as glasses, contact lens, medications, diapers, etc. Try to determine in advance what you really need to function.
Fourth, have some cash you can get to easily. There are times when ATMs and credit cards don’t work. You want to be able to provide for your family.
Fifth, save money for use in a crisis. Remember, a large automobile repair bill can precipitate a crisis. Having prepared in advance helps relieve stress.
Finally, be spiritually prepared. Jesus told His disciples of days of tribulation. He told them again and again to “watch” and to “take heed” because you don’t want to be found sleeping (Mark 13:35-37). In difficult days of any kind or when Jesus returns, we want to be on “speaking terms” with our Lord.
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