Night Whispers Devotional


September 8th

Dream word – PREPARE

Matthew 24:4-8

“And Jesus answered and said to them: ‘Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, “I am the Christ,” and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumours of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.’” NKJV

“I can hear your strong winds blowing”

For me, one of the most powerful country songs ever written and sung was by Hank Williams Junior and it was entitled, “Country Boy Can Survive.” This song is really a celebration of the frontier spirit and in particular that spirit once found in the honest, hard working, tough living, self-supporting and self-reliant Southern folk of the United States of America. The opening lyrics of “I live back in the woods, you see, a woman and the kids, and the dogs and me. I got a shotgun rifle and a 4-wheel drive, and a country boy can survive…”describes very typically some of the people in my life that I have been privileged to get to know. At that time of writing these thoughts, I have lived somewhat in the backwoods myself, surrounded by these folk for nearly eighteen months. My front door has remained physically open for all of that time to allow our hunter killer cats free roaming access, for my wife you see, is a softy.

When we first moved into our place back in the woods, tired from the long trek from Miami, I asked the owner for the key to the front door and he just scratched his head and said that he, “Wasn’t quite sure if he had a key?”Having just moved up from South Florida where we wouldn’t put the garbage out without locking the door behind us, I asked, “Well, what do you do if someone breaks in?”His response was quick and simple: “We shoot ‘em.”And they would! And so yes indeed, a country boy can survive. Yet I do wonder about the next generation of country folk, who even now exhibit that same bruised fruit syndrome of the younger generations of this world, in that the world owes them a living and drugs is better than work. I am not sure if the next generation of Southern country folk could survive. No sir, I am not sure at all.

Along with Davy Crockett of yesterday evening’s Night Whisper, I want to go to Texas  again tonight and to Galveston, along the Texan Gulf Coast in particular, for today in the year 1900, Galveston was hit by an unnamed hurricane, which wreaked such havoc upon that once fair Southern city, that it  has become the deadliest natural disaster the United States has so far faced.

Investigation of archives showing still photographs of the devastation and some old footage shot with the only four cameras available in the United States at that time, (imagine that!) show this once jewel in the crown of Texas, to have been brutally stamped from the face of the earth! With anywhere between 8,000 to 12,000 dead, simply dumping the bodies at sea was not enough to water bury the dead, as the returning tide simply brought the terror and the decomposing corpses back into land. So, makeshift funeral pyres burnt for days, and survivors involved in the mass burnings were given whiskey as they threw their own family members on to the fires, mothers, brothers, wives, daughters and sons, all burning in a heap around the wind blitzkrieg wreckage of a once abounding and beautiful city. All gone in just one storm. I can hear Glen Campbell singing right now, “Galveston, oh Galveston, I still hear your sea winds blowin.”

Interestingly enough, the inhabitants of Galveston had not some little sensibility towards the possibility of a disaster, but it was another meteorological false prophet by the name of Isaac Cline, who in 1891 wrote an article in the Galveston Daily News in which he gave his official meteorological opinion, that the thought of a hurricane ever doing any serious harm to Galveston was, “An absurd delusion!”You see, many residents had called for a seawall to protect the city but Cline's statement helped to prevent its construction. The residents of Galveston, though fully aware of the impending possibility of disaster, failed to protect themselves. They utterly failed to prepare.

Forecasting the weather is probably one of the most difficult jobs in the world. It’s like keeping a lion for a pet. You can love it, lead it and lay your hands lovingly along it’s lovely main but it’s still a lion and don’t you ever forget it, because the day you do, it will turn around, leap on you and rip your throat out and eat you alive. No, weather forecasting is not for me.

Tonight though, I want to talk to you all too briefly about preparedness and in particular, preparing for disaster.

Disasters have occurred. Disasters will occur. Disasters are occurring. Statistically speaking as well, it is of note that in these days, we are in fact experiencing increasing disasters of greater and greater intensity. The Bible and indeed the Lord himself, warns us not to be dummies about these things, but to expect them and therefore to prepare for them! In these very uncertain times, as we ever speed toward ‘the time of the end,’ we Christians must assume much more of a war footing when it comes to preparing for the very near future. I am not a survivalist, I am not an end times freakoid who is hooked on wild, wild novels but I do read the Word and I do look at the signs of the times and everything in my spirit does cry warning! Warning! So, tonight then, I really do want to talk to you all, far too briefly, about preparedness and in particular preparing for disaster.

The priority of course is not to listen to false prophets, whoever they are and especially if they work for the government! Get the facts and then trust your gut. Get a plan friend and make sure that plan encompasses the following:

Evacuation
Nutrition
Medication
Communication
Transportation
Immediate Protection
Future Provision
and for us Christians, an ongoing, Declaration!

The preacher man might still be singing, “It's the end of time and the Mississippi River she's a goin' dry. The interest is up and the Stock Markets down  and you only get mugged if you go downtown,”but make no mistake about it, disasters are coming.

Tonight, in your bed, thinking of when these hard times shall surely come upon us, maybe you could think through what you need to gather and accomplish, to make the survival of you and your family and maybe even the survival of others that you know, much more of a reality. Do I sound extreme? Think about that tonight. Do I sound extreme? Maybe, but a may I ask you, “Hey country boy, can you survive?”

Listen: Proclaim this among the nations: ‘Prepare for war! Wake up the mighty men, Let all the men of war draw near, Let them come up. Beat your plowshares into swords And your pruning hooks into spears; Let the weak say, “I am strong.” Assemble and come, all you nations, And gather together all around. Cause Your mighty ones to go down there, O Lord.  ‘Let the nations be wakened, and come up to the Valley of Jehoshaphat; For there I will sit to judge all the surrounding nations. Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe. Come, go down; For the winepress is full, The vats overflow — For their wickedness is great.’ Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision. The sun and moon will grow dark, And the stars will diminish their brightness. The Lord also will roar from Zion, And utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; But the Lord will be a shelter for His people, And the strength of the children of Israel. ‘So you shall know that I am the Lord your God, Dwelling in Zion My holy mountain. Then Jerusalem shall be holy, And no aliens shall ever pass through her again.’” Joel 3:9-17 NKJV

Pray: Lord, give us oil in our lamps and keep us burning, for we watch and wait for You O Bridegroom. Give me wisdom and teach me how to prepare. In Your great name I ask it, amen.

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