War! Pandemic! Food Shortages: That’s Why We Prepare
by Brandon Hunt
“What has been, it is what will be, and what has been done, it is what will be done. So there is nothing new under the sun.” (Ecclesiastes 1: 9-10)
We have all heard the saying that history repeats. Well, when I came across this truth from the Bible, it hit me with great force and stuck with me. It was like finding that one lost puzzle piece that snaps the whole pattern in place.
Everything has its time and season. What has happened before will happen again. Once you recognize those truths, it’s a powerful awakening. Patterns exist in all aspects of life. The key is being aware of, and finding those patterns.
In truth, there really is nothing new under the sun. War has happened before; economies have failed before; great cities, civilizations and empires have all fallen before. We have all this history before us, but why do we fail to understand and learn from it?
We may be heading for our own collapse (I don’t know for sure) but once those patterns of collapse commence, it’s near impossible to stop the decline.
Still…there is time to prepare
Preparation is one way we deal with patterns of history and change. The word “preparation” is perhaps one of the most useful and effective words in our language. The habit of preparation is responsible for all of the successes we achieve in our lives. That word has brought more happiness, done more good, saved more people than any other thing.
If you consider it in your own life, you’ll find that preparation has been involved in all aspects. We prepare ourselves for work; we prepare for school; we prepare for careers; we prepare for marriage and families; we prepare for life itself. Make no mistake, preparation is a habit.
If preparation is a positive force, then the polar opposite would be “unprepared,” a word weighed down with sadness. Why? Because lurking within the inherent, unspoken implication is failure. Any failure due to unpreparedness also suggests it was preventable. Indeed, much pain and suffering could be avoided through preparation.
Unpreparedness is significant for many reasons. It is often the cause of failure, but more telling is what it reveals in people. You could say that failure is sloth and apathy made visible, encouraging people to relinquish responsibility.
Are You Receiving?
If nothing is new under the sun, we should enhance our vision by learning from the past. Otherwise how can we hope to see and prepare for events lying off in the future?
Have you ever felt unready, unprepared when it came time to learn? Whether it be school, training in work, or learning an instrument, an unprepared mind isn’t ready to receive the message.
Such was my case taking music lessons when I was younger. One birthday my parents gave me a banjo and arranged for lessons from someone my dad knew. Thing was, I wanted to learn the guitar, and I accepted the banjo somewhat begrudgingly. I learned to play but I didn’t always practice. When I didn’t practice my teacher could always tell — I was often unprepared to receive new instruction.
We are always receiving messages, new instructions from life, the world, the actions of ourselves and others we interact with. We need to tune our minds, bodies, and spirits into a state of receptivity and act upon those messages, those “gut” feelings prompting us.
It’s Preparation Time
Preparation is one of the most important efforts in our lives. Consider how much preparation time an Olympian spends on training, or how many hours a top chef spends in the kitchen, or just the time a person invests in a career. A great need in our lives is time for adequate preparation, specifically for the future.
The dictionary definition of preparation says it means to “to make ready”, “to set, or place in order.” That definition applies to our thoughts, minds, lives, and is something we should apply and practice everyday.
Consider this example of someone who lived the definition of preparation. Hal Moore, a colonel during the early days of Viet Nam, was tasked with developing a new battlefield concept called “air cavalry,” using helicopters to quickly get soldiers in and out of battlefields.
The key to his success and the lives saved because of it, was extensive drilling and training. Before they ever saw any combat they rigorously trained for months. Because of his foresight and preparations Hal Moore trained his men for a new kind of battlefield. You can read their story in We Were Soldiers Once…and Young, or you can watch the movie with Mel Gibson. Hal Moore is a powerful example of one who lived and believed in preparation.
A very real war is happening right now, and whether it escalates or not, we will still feel the effects at some point. Some effects, like gas prices and inflation are results of our own folly; nevertheless, they are exacerbated by the Ukrainian conflict.
If there is anything we should have learned from the last couple of years it’s that there is wisdom in preparing. Too many people wait for something to happen before they decide they need to prepare.
Preparation is a great opportunity to get ahead, to set things in order, to get ready.
Remember our adage?
What has happened before will happen again.
How seldom we take advantage of the opportunity to prepare beforehand.
A paradox resides in the nature of preparation, one that every individual struggles with. You see, everyone wants to improve their circumstances, but most don’t want to work on improving themselves. Yet, personal preparation is key to improving.
Why is personal improvement important? Simple. If we’re not preparing to succeed, we automatically work on failing. It’s like going to the gym to build muscle. All of that hard work and effort to build and maintain muscle strength, yet, once you stop exercising, your body begins to atrophy and your strength diminishes. Entropy automatically sets in.
I Find Your Lack of Preparation Disturbing
At Emergency Zone we see first hand the lack of effort in preparation on a sizable scale. When times are good and people are secure…well, let’s just say our inventory is bountiful, because people feel like they don’t need to prepare. Then when an external threat appears, suddenly everyone feels the urgency to prepare and establish their own security.
So, why are people totally surprised and unprepared when a threat rises?
Because they fail to give head to the signs and connect them to patterns, which can be traced to a similar type of event from history.
Or maybe people simply want to believe that everything will continue as normal.
Understanding that past events are types of what is to come, we need to study, become aware of what has happened before, and then plan ahead. Emergency preparation is preparation for survival.
To finalize this article I want to classify successful preparation into 3 categories:
- Physical Preparation: This is obvious. This covers all of your physical needs to survive: work on your health; store water and food; collect hygiene supplies and hold on to a few clothes you were about to donate. There’s a lot to consider when you actually realize the amount of supplies you need to survive. It can feel overwhelming. However, once you have the big picture of what you need, break down your gathering efforts into manageable chunks. Don’t forget to inventory what you have and what you’re gathering.
- Mental Preparation: If the worst happens, like an economic collapse, your state of mind will determine how well you adapt and survive. Just as you look to your physical needs, the same goes for your mind. A negative frame of mind will hinder you more than a lack of supplies. We’ve all seen some kind of survival movie where there’s always one “glass half-empty” sort of person, who never really helps the group, but rather creates more problems. You don’t want to be that kind of person. Fortify your mind. Start working on it now. Do so through books, planning, videos on prepping, or whatever works for you.
- Emotional Preparation: Any kind of emergency takes an emotional toll. To counter that we need to strengthen our emotional resilience when our spirit is in harmony with our minds and bodies. Seek to be prepared in all ways. The Boy Scout motto “Be Prepared” is a great one to take to heart and live by. They are great words. Doubtless two more important words could be found.
Adopt those words — be prepared — and work towards it everyday. The patterns and signs are there. Learn to recognize them. As the book Ecclesiastes says, “There is nothing new under the sun.” If that is the case, then we can study what came before and prepare for what is ahead.
What I do know is that our old way of life, what we were used to a couple of years ago, has been consigned to the past. Our country continues to change so fast, with one bad event happening after another, I fear the outcome won’t be a good one. Too many people fail to heed the lessons of history, or realize that it all repeats.
Prepare now to face the repeat of history.
Good luck and prep well.