Friday, July 17, 2009

Do Instead of Plan to Do-Month Seven

Obviously there is a type of preparation that every family needs that cannot be put into a back pack or a bucket in the storage room. I saw this up close and personal as I observed a family over years of time.
It was your typical American family. The brothers had been raised on hard work, hunting, fishing and being together. As the family aged, one of the young men in this in-active L.D.S. home developed a testimony and a desire to serve a mission. When he returned and married, his value system now somewhat altered from his formulative years, he made up his mind to attend church every week.
As extended family trips came up, there were often times that he had to excuse himself and his new little family to return home for church. This didn’t always go over too well. Even his children were sad to leave cousins to return early so they could attend meetings. But the years came and went and the foundation that those firm commitments made on his family were now noticeable. The brothers had great family recreational memories, but some of their children floundered spiritually. There is today, regret and heartache in those families. All the fun fishing trips in the world doesn’t bring the opportunities that are now gone. There are no guarantees that going to church every week will keep your children from ever wandering, but constant steady spiritual food does give us the best chance of keeping them spiritually safe.

Spiritual preparation does not come all at once. The Lord uses the parable of the ten virgins and oil in their lamps for a reason. It takes time, real time. One drop at a time. Heavily studying the scriptures for a week or so does not fortify a family for a lifetime. But day by day and droplet by droplet we accumulate spiritual oil, we build a supply that can light our way and our children’s way in the decisions and challenges that come to every life.

July Preparedness Family Home Evening

Opening Song: LDS Hymns, More Holiness Give Me, no. 131

Thought: Please read and discuss the introduction to this article. Ask each member of the family to tell the ways that they think your family is adding “drops of oil” to the spiritual preparedness family lamp.
Discuss the following together:
1. How can our family do better with regards to spiritual preparedness?…. Prayer, scripture study, church attendance, paying of tithing etc.
2. How can we each individually do better?
3. How would this type of preparation really help us in times of want or crisis?

List Seven

This month is a bit different from past months in that you will be collecting information. Please use the notebook I asked you to get for one of the earlier months. Paper punch all the sheets or make copies of them and keep these in this notebook which will always be kept with your 72 hour emergency kit. Include everyone in the gathering of this information so they can be aware of what is in your kit and also so as not to lose the family momentum towards your goal. They will find a sense of peace in having this knowledge on hand.

There are so many different forms for the gathering of these facts that I am simply going to list the data you should be collecting. You may wish to find forms on the internet that are already done, or you may want to use this list and type up a custom one for your family.

For each vehicle, list: year, make, model, vin. #, license # and insurance policy number and company

For home, list: homeowner’s insurance policies, company and claims phone numbers, policy numbers, copy of mortgage papers

For family, list: all life insurance, annuities, investments, wills, trusts, checking and savings accounts, possible copies of driver’s licenses and social security cards, and any other important family papers.

For medical purposes, list: any current medications being taken by family members and where possible, a prescription number for meds. taken; a list of doctors and phone numbers; a list of major surgeries, diseases, allergies and medical conditions for each family member.

Now, here are some extra areas of concern to also go over with your family at family home evening:

1. Each family member should know where the water valve in the home is, how to shut it off and practice doing so.
2. Each family member should know where the water main in the street or outside of the home is and where to get a tool to shut it off and then practice doing so.
3. Each family member should know where the gas valve is on the outside of your home and how to turn it off. Many fires could be avoided after an earthquake if people would immediately go and turn off any gas coming into the home. After the damage is assessed by a qualified person and you are sure that no pipes have been broken, then the gas can be turned back on.

For the very most enthusiastic among you, here are yet additional ideas :

Recently I have been very concerned about my records and photos. Next to the safety of my family, I don’t think there is anything in my home more precious to me than my photos… they are obviously irreplaceable. Here is an idea that I am doing and it is working very well. I have a very tiny, 10 mega pixal digital camera. It is not an SLR, but it is a pretty good little point n’ shoot. I got an idea to take pictures of my best pictures with it, and it works! Surprisingly well too. Just hold steady and shoot. Don’t take everything you have ever photographed, but at least a variety of the best ones. Then download on a computer and burn an archive cd of this collection. Place one cd in your fireproof safe and one in a protective sleeve in your 72 hour kit. It may be worth it to you to even leave a copy with a family member or friend who doesn’t live in your home, that way, in the event of a fire or other disaster, you will have all your best photos. Be aware of copy rights.

Using this same technique, go from room to room and photo each room, inside each closet and drawer. This is a wonderful insurance archive in the case of loss. By the way, a very large photo archive will not fit on a regular cd and so I use a dvd to hold massive amounts of information. Anything you wish to archive can be done this way. Even close-ups of your papers could be done if you do it right. Enjoy this idea and play with it.

Doesn’t being prepared feel great? You are more than half way done with this year’s 72 hour kit project. If you are now just joining us, take heart, print off the last 6 month’s lists as well and get going. There isn’t anything that will make you feel more peace and satisfaction than simply being ready.
You can do this.
Just Do Instead Of Plan To Do!