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Paul Hayden

How Long is Your Hurricane Checklist?

September 2, 2019

After living mostly in Florida since I was 11, I have seen hundreds of the "Hurricane Checklists" posted on TV and given away by government agencies. They contain sensible things like batteries, water, a first-aid kit, and so on. Many contain dozens of items. Mine, below, is much shorter.

Does that mean I don't stock up on water and batteries in case the electricity goes out? Of course not. Having lived without electricity following a hurricane for as much as three weeks, I know how to prepare. It's a matter of where I place my trust. Do I trust in my preparations, or do I trust in the Lord?

I could live in a bunker stocked with years worth of food and water, but I would not feel nearly as secure as I do when I live under the shadow of the Almighty God. On Sunday in church, when Hurricane Dorian was pointed right at my town, the Lord spoke to me and said that we were under his wings; that He would protect us. I felt His peace surround me because God does not lie.

So why are there two items on my checklist? Shouldn't prayer be enough? Actually, no. Belief must accompany prayer; otherwise it is just a wish. I believe that what many Christians call prayer is really just hope, because there is no belief attached.

How do I know this? Because they say, "I prayed that the Lord would XXX. I sure hope He does it." If they're "hoping" the Lord will answer their prayer, it isn't really a prayer at all. It's more like a child hoping Santa will bring them a toy. But if they believe with all their hearts that He will, He will. It's really that simple. We often make it complicated - but it really is that simple.

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Dr. Tom Barrett is a pastor, teacher, author, conference keynote speaker, professor, certified executive coach, and marketplace minister. His teaching and coaching have blessed both church and business leaders. He has been ordained for over 40 years, and has pastored in seven churches over that time. Today he “pastors pastors” as he oversees ordained and licensed ministers in Florida for his ministerial fellowship.

He has written thousands of articles that have been republished in national newspapers and on hundreds of websites, and is a frequent guest on radio and television shows. His weekly Conservative Truth article (which is read by 250,000) offers a unique viewpoint on social, moral and political issues from a Biblical worldview. This has resulted in invitations to speak internationally at churches, conferences, Money Shows, universities, and on TV (including the 700 Club).

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