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Resilience

by on October 15, 2013

 

Most of us have seen pictures of the dust bowl years in the western US or pictures of the great depression. Along with the sadness that grips the faces there is also resilience that seems foreign in this new millennium.

My mind goes back to the early 1950s when I was old enough to notice the old tires above the farm shop. They were worn smooth and some of them had breaks in the sidewalls. I asked Grandpa, Why do you have all those old tires up there? He said, Son, someday you will need those tires. He went on to explain how they mended tires with wire and re-patched the tubes that were already patched several places.

All of that seems like a distant memory. Or, maybe not. Could those days return? If they did, how would we handle them? Would we have the resilience to repair tires? Could we make the best out of difficult times? Would we survive? Could we survive? Our soft age of easy and immediate has not prepared us for stress and difficulty and impossible situations. How would we deal with the stresses of the dust bowl years? Could we deal with them?

In this age, we quickly exchange a dollar for a dinner. In less than ninety seconds we chose from the menu and drive away without ever leaving our comfortable, climate-controlled seat. In the process, we have lost sight of where that dinner came from. Meals are not handed out of windows to waiting drivers. Meals are complex composites of complicated processes. Grain and meat to produce bread and burger take planning and precision. Life is dependent on a few inches of topsoil and a few more inches of rain. All of that is dependent on a benevolent Creator.

It is easy to forget God in this equation. We are totally dependent on God no matter what. No matter how self-sufficient we may be. No matter how well prepared we think we are. God is in control. Apostle Paul knew how to abound and how to suffer need. Can we do the same? Can we see God in the answers to where we are or where we may be going? He is the answer. He is our answer. Can we keep our faith when the world seems to be falling apart? Could that happen? It has in the past. It could happen again. God was there then. He will be there again.

The modern world has a delicate system of production and distribution. It requires daily, diligent function. That system is easily interrupted. What if it would be interrupted? What would you do? Are you prepared for a life of toil and trouble? Are you prepared for a life of dependence on your neighbors instead of on mini-marts and fast-food establishments?

We need to seriously contemplate the likelihood of difficult days ahead. We need to prepare the rising generation to be strong and diligent and resourceful. We need to show them that life is not an easy road. Life is hard and real and needs real people to live honestly and carefully every moment of every day. We need to think in terms of community and the careful caring and sharing of loving neighbors. We need to prepare our children and theirs for coming difficult times. What do they need?

They need role models of integrity and diligence and resilience in the face of difficult situations.

  • They need to see us model personal diligence
  • They need to see us model community.
  • They need to see us actually practice what that means in the real world.
  • They need to see us call out to God for life and sustenance every day.
  • They need to see us place others first and ourselves second.
  • They need to feel our protection for their hearts.
  • They need to sense their important role in community.
  • They need to feel the blessing of sacrifice for others.
  • They need to see us protect the natural, social, and Spiritual environment.
  • They need to see us set greed and pride aside for higher values.
  • They need to perceive eternal values in our hearts.

 

Live as if this is your last day on earth.

Prepare as if life will go on forever.

Your countenance speaks loudly to those around you.

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