Are You Prepared?
by Bro. Ken

        Just recently I listened to an interview with some experts on the Y2K crisis. I felt it is of importance to you to know the facts. With only five months remaining before the clock rolls over to the year 2000, I believe it is to your advantage to be prepared for what might develop. Please note the word might! No one knows for sure just how bad it may be where you and I live. The scripture is clear on how a Christian is to approach a possible crisis. Proverbs 22:3, "A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself, But the simple pass on and are punished." The Living Bible translates this verse in this way; "A prudent man foresees the difficulties ahead and prepares for them, the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences".
        We must understand one thing, you and I do not get all the truth. Our society has its way of not saying all the truth, certainly about things that will effect the bottom line, which is profit. Therefore you hear a lot of words that mean different things to different people. This leads to much uncertainty and confusion. This is where we find ourselves on the Y2K issue. So what do some of the leading experts say concerning the coming crisis? A note of caution is first needed, what I am going to share with you are only projections, however, I believe they are sound projections and should be taken seriously.
        How will the Y2K crisis affect the ordinary citizen? The experts tell us that most Americans will not be effected very much, at least in the early stages. However, there may be disruptions in electrical power and purification of water. It is wise therefore to have some storage of water and food. I believe just about everyone is saying this. How much is enough you may be thinking? It is difficult to say, I have heard everything from two-weeks to three months. I lean toward the shorter time frame than I do the longer one. Most people have this already at home, but you might want to consider having enough to help someone whom does not. The experts also tell us of the effects this crisis will have long term. Unemployment is foreseen as doubling from its now low of four percent to eight percent or maybe a little higher. Oil prices are expected to rise dramatically, thus we will feel the effects in higher gas bills, gas for automobiles, air flights and the such.
        The forecast of the stock market is at least a 3000 point fall in the Dow Jones, but this is very tricky to forecast, it could be more or less. Our trade with other countries will be severely damaged due to the fact that most other countries are very far behind us on the Y2K crisis. This could have affect in unseen ways. The experts tell me that this will not be a collapse of the economy nor will it be just a little bump in the road. There are going to be problems across the board, it is not a hoax, big business does not spend billions of dollars on hoaxes. There are going to be lay-offs, and work slow downs. People are going to need to tighten their belts. Now is the time to get your finances in order, your record keeping up to date. Now is the time to make sure your medicines will be there when you need them. Now is the time to set back a little cash to help you if needed.
        What is the churches' roll in times of crisis? I think it is very clear from scripture that we are to love our neighbor, as we love ourselves. Whatever your view on this crisis that is certain to come, or at least come to some, we as the church need to be a place of safety and peace for those in need. We need to think about others and what we can foresee in doing that we will be a blessing and a help to them. Please be in prayer asking God to help prepare us for what is ahead and to give us the desire to be a loving hand to those who will surely be in need.