The other day the main lamp in our living room stopped working. I replaced the bulb, but that didn’t work. I was somewhat expecting it because the turn knob was starting to turn freely. My wife wanted to go and buy a new one, but I told her that I wanted to try and fix it first. I mentioned that our society is quick to throw away things that could be fixed out of convenience. It is easier to go buy a new item.
So I started taking the lamp apart. After about 15 minutes of fighting with the weird way it was put together (I’m sure it was made in China), I started to hear my wife’s voice in the back of my head. “Just take it to the trash and go to Walmart. It will take less time and hassle.”
In all fairness, she is just embracing the mentality that most Americans have. It was the mentality that I had too. I mean, there are some things that I won’t try to fix. But my views have changed because I do see how destructive and hard we our on our world. We use up resources without even thinking about the future. At some point, the chickens will come home to roost….actually we are already seeing it!
I know that I’m preaching to the choir here. Most of you reading this are coming from the preparedness, homesteading, DIY, reuse, reduce, recycle world! But I couldn’t help thinking that there was a spiritual application to my attempt to fix this broken lamp.
Here it is – Are we so hasty to seek quick answers and convenience that we don’t persevere in the things of God?
Saul was 30 years old when he became king, and he reigned 42 years over Israel. 2 He chose 3,000 men from Israel for himself: 2,000 were with Saul at Michmash and in Bethel’s hill country, and 1,000 were with Jonathan in Gibeah of Benjamin. He sent the rest of the troops away, each to his own tent.
3 Jonathan attacked the Philistine garrison that was in Geba, and the Philistines heard about it. So Saul blew the ram’s horn throughout the land saying, “Let the Hebrews hear!” 4 And all Israel heard the news, “Saul has attacked the Philistine garrison, and Israel is now repulsive to the Philistines.” Then the troops were summoned to join Saul at Gilgal.
5 The Philistines also gathered to fight against Israel: 3,000 chariots, 6,000 horsemen, and troops as numerous as the sand on the seashore. They went up and camped at Michmash, east of Beth-aven.
6 The men of Israel saw that they were in trouble because the troops were in a difficult situation. They hid in caves, thickets, among rocks, and in holes and cisterns. 7 Some Hebrews even crossed the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead.
Saul, however, was still at Gilgal, and all his troops were gripped with fear. 8 He waited seven days for the appointed time that Samuel had set, but Samuel didn’t come to Gilgal, and the troops were deserting him. 9 So Saul said, “Bring me the burnt offering and the fellowship offerings.” Then he offered the burnt offering.
10 Just as he finished offering the burnt offering, Samuel arrived. So Saul went out to greet him, 11 and Samuel asked, “What have you done?”
Saul answered, “When I saw that the troops were deserting me and you didn’t come within the appointed days and the Philistines were gathering at Michmash, 12 I thought: The Philistines will now descend on me at Gilgal, and I haven’t sought the Lord’s favor. So I forced myself to offer the burnt offering.”
13 Samuel said to Saul, “You have been foolish. You have not kept the command which the Lord your God gave you. It was at this time that the Lord would have permanently established your reign over Israel, 14 but now your reign will not endure. The Lord has found a man loyal to Him, and the Lord has appointed him as ruler over His people, because you have not done what the Lord commanded.”
1 Samuel 13:1-13 (HCSB)
You can almost feel sorry for Saul. He didn’t really want to be King in the first place. But here he is, ready to fight the Philistines. His men are starting to get discouraged and fearful. He waits for the Prophet Samuel to come and perform the sacrifice, but the old man is just taking his sweet time. Before he is left with no soldiers at all, he decides to take matters into his own hands!
And that’s when the problems usually come, when we decide to take matters into our own hands and not wait on God!
If we are truly God’s children, if we believe that He sent His Son Jesus to die on the cross and then raised Him back to life, if we believe that He is sending Jesus to come back for us and take us to Heaven one day, then can’t He come through in our everyday lives? Won’t He move in our lives when we pray and seek His face? Sure He can…Sure He will!
It’s just that darn waiting! It’s hard!
Luke 11:9-13 says, “So I say to you, keep asking, and it will be given to you. Keep searching, and you will find. Keep knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who searches finds, and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. What father among you, if his son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead of a fish? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” (HCSB)
Ultimately it boils down to believing and settling the fact that God’s ways and timing are better than anything you can possibly do on your own. You have to determine to do things His way, even if that means that “thing” you are after has to wait a little. Believe me, He knows what He’s doing!
“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, and your ways are not My ways.” This is the Lord’s declaration. “For as heaven is higher than earth, so My ways are higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.“ Isaiah 55:8-9 (HCSB)
1. Make sure that the thing you are waiting on God about is not answered in His Word already! God has already given us His Word on many topics! Sometimes, what people “perceive” God is telling them goes against His Word! God will never do that!
2. As You are waiting, spend time in prayer, the Bible and worshiping God. A great song from the movie Fire Proof is called “While I’m Waiting.” I hope you will listen to it. It will bless you!
3. Serve! It is a proven fact that while you help and serve others, you tend to get outside of yourself and your circumstances. Many times, you will realize that what you are going through, is nothing compared to what others are going through. And, you never know what God will do as you serve!
4. Remember the times God came through. In “Every Point Speaks,” I wrote about spiritual markers in our lives and how they help us remember how God has moved and worked in our past. It is a good idea to write some of your spiritual markers down, journal about them. So in those times when you are waiting on God, you can be encouraged!
5. Share with others that you are waiting on God and ask them to join with you in prayer. There is something powerful about speaking out your desires and prayers. I’m not talking about a name-it, claim-it gospel. I’m just saying that it makes you accountable and also let’s others see your faith. Those that are believers can join in with you, praying and believe in faith too!
If/When we are all around when the hammer drops, there are going to be a lot of people who need help. Yes, they didn’t prepare when they could have. They instead spent their time and money running after other things. But when it happens, are we going to turn them away?
We can’t help everyone. We can’t prepare for everyone. But can we help some? Can we prepare food, water and other preps knowing that others will need help one day?
Just like we don’t like to throw away resources and items that can be fixed, prepping a little extra will help fix the lives of others when the time comes. Lives are more valuable than “things.” And, you know as a Christian Prepper, that God will be with you!