Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. And with great power the apostles were giving their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need. Thus, Joseph, who was also called by the apostles Barnabas (which means son of encouragement), a Levite, a native of Cyprus, sold a field that belonged to him and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet. Acts 4:32-37
You don’t have to watch the current events on the news long to realize that we are on the brink of something. If you dig deeper, you will see people predicting that our financial bubble is soon to burst. In fact, this time it won’t be a downturn in just the United States, but a global meltdown. I have heard the ‘Chicken Littles’ come and go, but now there are so many of them from so many directions that it is getting hard to ignore. Read Ron Edwards’ blog to get his stats about many current related topics: Living Eternal Now
This is a quote about world-drought from Hackett Financial Advisors,
“Things are happening that haven’t happened in a long time,” said Hackett. “It’s just the beginning. We have data that goes back to the 1600s and 1800s from ice core samples, tree rings, and from actually written testimony of the kind of problems that they had,” said Hackett. “We are not doomist and gloomist, that’s not our modus operandi,” he said. “But the world we are heading into is a world of food scarcity and local famines. “It’s not going to be pleasant. It’s going to be a very difficult time. We’re going to have to come up with new ways of growing food in this more difficult environment.”
And then there is the political climate of hate, coming from both sides. It is like a pressure cooker that is soon to pop the lid off. I am old enough to remember pre-Watergate years when things were not divisive and there could be a sense of unity regardless of who had the majority in the House.
All of this is to say what echoes in the back of many peoples’ minds, including my own: “Are we headed into the End Times?” This is a very real question. Like, what would you do if there was a global financial collapse and money wasn’t any good anymore? Further, all of your savings that you banked on for retirement and security suddenly vanished? Or, what if drought really began to take over and food resources become so scarce that grocery stores didn’t have shelves of food anymore? And hyper inflation took over, driving prices through the roof?
My husband and I have made some new friends recently that are real life ‘Dooms Day Preppers.’ This other couple are not Christians, so they aren’t operating from the guiding hand of the Holy Spirit. We have to remind ourselves of the promises of Scripture, like in Matthew 6:31-32 where it says, Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat? or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.
We have had many good opportunities to share about Jesus with them. I believe that they are in our lives for a specific reason. They are challenging us to get ready for a coming physical crisis by storing up food and supplies. We are wanting to communicate what it means to store up treasures in Heaven where moth and rust does not corrupt and where thieves do not steal. My prayer is that one day soon they will join the family.
As my husband and I look at what is going on currently, we can’t blow off our prepper friends. Their take is that if the economy collapses and our money is no good, then stored up food and dry goods are worth more than a whole bunch of paper bills. They foresee that the drought will cause issues with the non drought areas because people will migrate here and take over our resources. They are also convinced that an EMP is a credible threat (electro magnetic pulse that would wipe out all computers and electronic devices). We know that nothing that will happen that doesn’t come in and out of God’s hands.
However, that doesn’t negate Acts 4 and the kind of community that we may have to become. My view of the End Times is a PreWrath Framework. That means that I don’t believe that believers will be raptured up before any specific tribulation will come. I take Scripture at face value, which means that in Matthew 24 for instance, when Jesus gave a timeline, He was telling us something. That timeline includes wars, famines and earthquakes, tribulation and false prophets, lawlessness increasing, and the love of many growing cold. That’s just the beginning of the birth pangs.
But then there is the specific chronology of events starting in vs. 15: The Abomination of Desolation (in the Temple in Jerusalem), THEN the Great Tribulation (Satan’s wrath cf Rev. 6:12), and then the return of Christ in the clouds, along with the gathering of His elect from the four winds.
I have written a novel that puts a story line to this framework, The Gathering. The link is there. It is on Lulu.com, just in case you want a little summer reading. My conclusion is that we must live in a community of believers much like the Acts believers did. In order to do that, we must have things to share–hard goods. My admonishment is this: you might want to ask yourself the same question: What in the world is going on? And then do something. Pray and ask God to tell you what you need to prepare. It might be radical.
What we are doing is kind of radical. We aren’t spending our money on a summer vacation. It’s going into canning and other resources that will we will use in the future if the cost of things spiral out of control. We have an eye on how this can be used to share with others.