Always be Prepared

Always be Prepared

Always be Prepared

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Written by Donna Bowles

 

I took a class one day entitled Generations at Work. I thought it would be helpful in all aspects of my job, as well as my Ministry to women of all ages. There were 30 people in the class, which consisted of men and women from all generations. I sat down beside a woman I had walked in with, and we soon began to share pictures of our grandchildren with each other as we waited for the class to begin. I had settled in nicely for my four hour class and was quite comfortable at my table.

“Always be prepared…”

After a while, we were instructed to count off around our tables and move to a new group according to our number. I was placed at a table with a man and a woman around my age, and we started discussing the “good old days” of our youth. We began reminiscing about unlocked doors and multiple generations in the home, and the gentleman mentioned the days gone by being a “spiritual” time in his home. As he spoke I could tell he had a grandmother who loved the Lord.

“Always be prepared…”

Soon we were directed to choose a listener, a speaker and an observer for a listening exercise. In our group the man was the speaker, the other woman was the listener, and I was the observer. The speaker was told he had three minutes to talk about anything he wanted…anything. The listener was told to empty her filter, that is, to remove any junk or preconceived notions, listen, and repeat back all that was said by the speaker. My job was to watch, and watch I did in amazement as God announced His presence at our table.

“Always be prepared…”

The speaker began telling us of a phone call he had gotten from a friend. The friend had a question about where God was in the loss of life during a recent hurricane. This man shared a clear and loving response to his friend which began with the fall of Adam and Eve. He shared God’s desire for the beautiful garden to be their home, instead of the one filled with thistles and briars that they had after their disobedience. He spoke of Satan and the evil in our world. He then told the man of God’s love, and basically assured Him that God’s back is never turned on the good or bad events in our lives. This gentle man had taken this man’s question and handed him back hope. As the man shared I could not stop smiling. Obviously he knew the Lord as do I, but I wasn’t sure about the listener. As she listened attentively so she could repeat back what he said, I wondered. When it was her turn she spoke back almost all of the words he had spoken verbatim. I had a feeling this might have been the first time she had ever spoken words about the power and love of God. I will never know, but He does.

“Always be prepared…”

The Bible says in 1 Peter 3:15, “Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.”

Did I mention that this man was so excited to share his story that he started before the timer was set, and he had to stop and wait? He began with “The other day I got a call from a friend who had a question” and then he had to stop. This did not derail him. He began again after a moment and God had His way. I am wondering how often you and I get derailed and don’t let God have His way when we need to speak hope into a situation? Sometimes we become so accustomed to looking beyond a person that we don’t look into their eyes, and see their desperation for hope. Are you prepared at a moment’s notice to give a reason for the hope you have in Jesus? As we approach this season that really is all about Jesus, may God give us those opportunities, and may we be obedient and give Him the glory He deserves.

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