Tennessee Mountain Stories

Being Prepared

I was pretty sure I wanted to talk with you this week about last week’s weather scare.  Now don’t think I’m going to waste much space railing against the National Weather Service or the meteorolgists I listen to everyday.  And I’m going to try not to preach at you – but I’m more likely to lean toward the preaching than complaining.

I was torn between talking about problems with predictions (we’ll have to come back to that topic one day soon) and being prepared…preparedness won this week possibly because the preacher talked about Solomon on Sunday and my children’s bible reading has been in 1 Kings for the last week where they too were learning about the wisest king.

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So the weatherman said it would snow last week.  The temperatures were going to plummet and an overnight rain would freeze making travel miserable and in my estimation tearing down power lines leaving us all quietly in the dark.  Then we all started getting ready – well the more prudent of our society anyway.  Schools cancelled, roads were sprayed and at my house we filled water containers (when the power goes out our well pump quits), carried in wood and made sure there was plenty of food in the house.  I’m sure hoping you’ll click “comments” below and tell me how you prepared.

The people of the mountain are used to taking care of themselves and getting ready for hard times – we’ve been doing these things in one form or another since the first settlers walked onto the Plateau.  Of course things are a little different, these days we need to ensure gas tanks are filled (both automobiles and LP tanks) and not too many of us still have a well with a bucket so if you aren’t on city water you have to fill bottles and buckets like me. 

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There’s a whole movement in our time of “preppers” – they’ve even had their own reality TV shows.  These people are preparing for various disasters and sometimes they’re pretty funny.  I tend to listen to them and think, “We’ve always done these things.” Well we’re farmers and Proverbs 28:19 tells us that if you till your land you’ll have plenty of bread – so every spring we fire up tractor or tiller and turn the ground for taters and beans.  When the snow comes that’s food that will see you through. 

Proverbs 6:6-8 directs our attention to the ants that have no one to tell them what time to clock into work, still they gather food in the harvest; we take that instruction and every summer we pick beans, dry apples, bale hay and fatten a calf, hog or flock of chickens.  These things we lay by for the winter months that will produce nothing but empty stomachs.

The predictions were a little off last week but my preparations were not wasted.  Wood stacked in the dry will be burned another day and the water uses the same out of gallon jugs as it does from the spigot.  I’d always rather be over-prepared and use up the supplies in good weather.  And while I cannot explain some of the decisions King Solomon made in his time, The good Lord chose to record Solomon’s lessons for very good reasons and if I can only apply and practice them then I will be prepared for hard times – whether bad weather, poor economies or spiritual trials – and can survive those times is relative comfort.