Preparedness is a full-time job for me. I live it, breathe it, and think about it constantly. Obviously I teach and write about it regularly as well. I used a Saturday this weekend to learn about how I can be better prepared. Then I spent some more “spare” time reading a novel that illustrates other possibilities I may not be prepared for yet. Why? Because I believe that preparedness is about honor.
Many people would label those who strive to be better prepared as paranoid lunatics. And yet they would not think of calling our honorable men and women who serve in the military, who are on night watch with AR-15s in hand right now, “paranoid.”
Are those of us who are watching carefully to what is going on around us and trying to mitigate our losses of life and freedom “paranoid?” No. A person who is prepared is honorable. They are willing to carry their own weight to protect themselves and those they love, instead of naively or cowardly delegating that responsibility to others. We are all night watchmen. We all need to honorably command our posts as careful guards over our family’s safety, nutrition, and peace. None can delegate that responsibility without bringing shame upon themselves. It’s hard to think this way when we’re enjoying life’s luxuries or being tossed to and fro with life’s schedule, but it doesn’t change the state of what truly is. There is honor in being prepared, not paranoia.
If you’re not paranoid, then surely you must be crazy, right? Tell that to the police officer who disciplines himself to train 3 times a week with his firearm instead of relinquishing his lifesaving skills to the whopping TWO times a year his department pays for firearm training. He’s not crazy. He values the breath of life—whether it be his own, his partner, his family, or members of his community. The Supreme Court says he’s not obligated to protect any citizen—he’s only required to protect the interests of the State, City or County he’s hired by. So certainly he doesn’t require shooting practice 3 times a week to protect a non-living, breathing entity, right? (Yes, that’s sarcasm.) We are ALL defenders of our community, family, and selves. We cannot delegate that responsibility to someone else—not today and certainly not in the future in the midst of some disaster. There is honor in being prepared, not a label of being mentally deranged.
Preparedness isn’t about hoarding. It doesn’t mean you have a scarcity mentality. If that were the case then there are millions of farmers, Amish, and Mennonite people throughout the U.S. that believe that the world as we know it will end tomorrow. (This list would also include the founders of Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s!) It isn’t hoarding to have a year’s supply of food, water, and other necessities. Rather it’s the epitome of the Boy Scout theme! Having supplies of food and water has nothing to do with hoarding. It’s about fighting back against inflation, poisonous food recalls, disasters, crazy crowds, limited time, future “nutrition” manipulation, water contamination, etc. It doesn’t take much more time to pay for 6 cases of chicken than it does to pay for one. And at least one who prepares is PAYING for their items. Would our critics prefer that we simply become looters in a time of trouble and chaos? I watch herds of looters on my television screen every time a disaster of a hurricane or tornado is imminent. And I still have yet to seen one of the cowardly opportunists be prosecuted in court. Is it not more honorable to financially stabilize our homes by being prepared with the bounty that is available now, rather than become criminals or desperate cowards in the future? Clearly, there is honor in being prepared, not a scarcity mentality.
Is there one shred of honor in the person who claims “I’m coming to your house when things go south” and means it? How would you respond if a person were to say, “When I run out of money, I’m coming to your bank account”? Or “When I get sick because I was foolish, I’m bringing my disease to your house to let you care for me.” “When I lose my job, I’ll just eat your food, have you pay my bills, and pay for my schooling.” Of course there’s no honor, integrity, or virtue in these thought processes. And yet it is these same individuals who mock and impede those who would prepare themselves for just such occasions. When one takes themselves out of the selfish “me, me, me” mode and begins to think about the care and nurturing of others, there’s honor. When one decides NOT to violate eternal laws by delegating the responsibility of taking care of their fellowmen to some governmental agency, there’s honor. When one looks past today to prepare for the well-being of those they love tomorrow, there’s honor. When one actually prepares to put themselves in a position where they actually HAVE something to share with others who have nothing, there’s honor.
Yes, there is certainly honor in being prepared.
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