On the 5th of March, New Zealand was awoken by earthquakes and Civil Defence tsunami warnings. People were asked to evacuate, and to stay out of water and off beaches.
I don’t think any of us knew this was going to happen or wanted to be awoken in the early hours of the morning. When these unpredictable and life-threatening emergencies occur, there is usually little time to act.
Are you calm and prepared or are you stressed and flustered?
Do you know what to do, where to go, or what to bring with you?
I vaguely remembered what to do when I received those alerts, but not enough to act immediately. Thankfully the area where I was living was not heavily affected and I wasn’t pressed for time to make decisions. I still had time to Google what to do.
However, it made me question how I could be more prepared.
I planned to make buns that day, but I contemplated whether to continue because what if there was a Civil Defence alert warning to evacuate when I was making the dough?
What would I do with the uncooked dough? If I brought it along with me, where would I bake it? What use would a raw ball of flour bring? Isn’t it more beneficial to bring something substantial like canned foods and muesli bars?
I could not help but reflect on the first Passover the Israelites experienced. I truly felt and understood for the first time why the Israelites were instructed not to add yeast to their dough for the Passover meal; it was because they had to leave hastily.
Nobody had the time to wait for yeast to rise before baking the dough.
They were told.
At least the Israelites were prepared. They were warned by God through Moses what to paint on their doorframe, what food to eat and how to eat it.
They knew the tragedy was coming.
When midnight struck, the plan was in place. The Israelites took their dough without yeast, asked the Egyptians for articles of silver and gold and for clothing. And off they journeyed from Egypt.
God was in constant communication with Moses. Rather than Moses searching on Google what to do, God was telling him and giving him live updates.
It seems like the Israelites had it easy – everything was mapped out for them.
And maybe it is for us too.
What are we told?
There is a “Get Ready” section on the Civil Defence website with additional resources informing us how to prepare for emergencies. How many of us have read through those? Have we made the effort to equip ourselves?
Like the Israelites, we don’t know the exact timing of when tragedies and emergencies will occur. Maybe we are too obsessed in the comfort of normality that we become blindsided towards the unexpected. But it would be an understatement to say we don’t know these situations will occur.
As followers of God, the Bible explicitly tells us Jesus will be coming back. We are warned of wars, famines, and earthquakes in Matthew chapter 24. We are also called to keep watch and not be alarmed.
God did not leave us blindsided, nor does he leave us out of the loop in communication. He is our constant source of information that is not contradictory.
We can trust in what he has warned us. We are to bring the gospel with us, we are to set our minds on eternal things, and we are to choose life.
What do you do as you wait for the catastrophes in life to occur? Do you ignorantly continue in living a self-absorbent life, pushing aside the warnings and preparations? Or are you actively preparing yourself for these moments?
When that emergency alert warning comes, are you ready?
Stephanie enjoys simple living, admiring nature’s beauty and intricacy, and playing the piano. She is particularly passionate about empowering the vulnerable. Writing is her way of processing thoughts and feelings to understand herself, God and the world in a deeper and more meaningful way.