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Chaplain: Preparation Matters

By Allen Teal, Chaplain

A wise youth makes hay while the sun shines, but what a shame to see a lad who sleeps away his hour of opportunity. (Proverbs 10:5, The Living Bible).

June marks the beginning of summer. I have always viewed summer as the season of strength. Out of the deadness of winter emerges the tentative steps of spring. By the middle of June, nature has hit its stride. Trees, flowers, birds and wildlife have achieved full bloom and activity. While winter seems a part of the distant future, it is marching toward us on the heels of the harvest. This makes summer the time of preparation.

The middle of life is a time to work.

Life is frequently broken up into periods that correspond to the seasons. Youth is spring. Midlife is summer. Senior years are fall. The elderly live at the edge of winter. Generally, the years from the late twenties through the mid-fifties are considered the time to establish families, careers and wealth. Bodies and minds are strong. Ambition, determination and willingness to take risks are high. People can accomplish more in less time.

Winter requires planning.

Ants fill their underground stores. Bears prepare for hibernation. Birds fly south. Plants load their roots with nutrients. All of nature seems to understand the need to capitalize on the opportunities of summer. Getting ready for winter requires an early start and a late finish. As long as the strength of summer holds, preparation continues.

Procrastination and laziness become our enemies.

Proverbs 24:33-34 says, “A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest —34 and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man.” Whether preparing for the winter of this life or for eternity, today is the time to get ready. Tomorrow, next week and next year are barreling toward us. Delaying material or spiritual readiness is asking for problems down the road. This is the time to pause and reflect about what we want tomorrow to be. Follow this with action to put your life on the right track to reach your desired goals.

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