Belle of Liberty

Letting Freedom Ring

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Be Prepared

Well, it’s official; according to the Iranians the Muslim Messiah, the “Mahdi” is on his way. He’s prepared to make his move. All the portents point to his accession, or the world’s nadir, depending on your point of view.

“I can tell you with utmost confidence: The promise of Allan for The Coming and the establishment of a new Islamic civilization is on its way.” So says the narrator of a new, Islamic propaganda video called, “The Coming is Near.” According to CBN, the video has the approval of the highest-ranking officials in the Iranian government.

These augurs see the signs of unrest and change in the Middle East as a welcome omen that they’ll soon dominate the world. Middle Easterners are extremely superstitious. We have them to thank for our modern version of astrology, which also points to more or less the same event as the Iranian government.

They hope that their certainty will leave the rest of us in doubt and fear. Evil doesn’t have to present itself in the guise of mystic revelations, sinister figures cloaking themselves in darkness, fireballs thundering down from the heavens, or seas upheaving themselves and washing away countless innocent lives (though we’ve seen that last calamity happen in Japan). Evil can be as simple as one human being saying to another: “You don’t have the right to speak.” Or “You don’t have the right to live.”

I had lunch yesterday with a woman from Ohio. She’s here on assignment in our office to deal with the recent, not-quite-the-end-of-the-world flooding we experienced earlier in March. After I took her photo, she discovered I took no offense, and in fact, some pleasure, in discussing God, so we agreed to have lunch.

“I just want to help people,” she said. “That’s why I like my job. But I also see so many people suffering. It’s just so sad. But it’s God’s will and I’m prepared to help them. I even know CPR and first aid techniques.”

She had taken courses with the American Red Cross. While other people are stocking up on food and other essentials for the coming End Times, she was preparing herself to help those who would likely to be suffering when all these calamities come down upon our heads.

I’m accustomed to taking lunch alone, and I was frankly wondering what God’s purpose was in our having lunch together (I believe in the Big Boss, too – I told her I don’t generally go to church because I don’t like going alone, but I do daily EPR – Evangelical Prayer Review – to see what I’m doing right and where I need a little more work). Until we got to this part of the conversation, I wasn’t quite sure what God had in mind.

Looking at yesterday’s headlines and listening to this part of her talk, I would gather that God wants us to do more than simply prepare ourselves for our own survival should the worst (God forbid) happen. He wants us to be prepared to help one another, too, like this lady.

Every town has an EMS squad, a volunteer fire department. There are good citizens who know how to do the basics – carpentry, gardening, sewing, metalwork, repair work, plumbing and so forth. Electricity won’t be of much use for awhile. But some of us still have our manual typewriters, if communications happens to be our thing. We used to be the country that knew how to do things, how to get things done.

Start volunteering for EMS, for the fire department, for civil response. Learn CPR and first-aid. Brush up on your handyman skills. Get your mechanical instruments in good operating order. Prepare whatever property you have to serve you in a time of need. If you don’t know your neighbors, get to know them and have a plan for cooperation. Mind you, I’m not saying communal living. To each his own property and respect for it. But where real help is needed, laziness notwithstanding, give it. The Amish do it. Be prepared to live off the grid, as they do.

Those who can’t do anything for themselves or others, such as the elderly and disabled, can make it with our help. Those who won’t do anything for themselves or others, won’t make it and won’t deserve to make it. Those who can do for themselves but won’t do for others who truly can’t help themselves should be driven off by those who can do both. Those who can do for themselves and for others deserve to inherit the earth.


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