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Self-Reliance and Christian Love

Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. (Galatians 6:2)

For each one should carry his own load. (Galatians 6:5)

As preppers we take responsibility for our own needs and burdens–we grow our own food, build our own shelter, care for and educate our own children, instead of requiring strangers to do this basic work for us.  This is an important practice for a time when the wider economic systems may no longer work.  It is also a step toward justice now, since the system from which we withdraw often mistreats the people who spend their lives doing basic work for others, forcing them to work long hours in difficult conditions for little pay and less respect.  Taking responsibility also strengthens our own competence and character.

But as preppers and people of faith, we are also called upon to bear the burdens of our neighbors.  We learn and work to supply their needs as well as our own–to grow enough food to share, to learn skills that we can teach freely to those who wish to learn.  We build networks of trust that make it easier for local people to rely on and sustain each other, both now and in the harder times which may come.

Paul understood the paradoxes that confront us when we seek to live our faith.  We are called to self-reliance, asked to take responsibility for ourselves.  We are also called to serve one another as Christ served us, remembering that in the end none of us can be completely self-sufficient.  We always rely on God’s grace, and sometimes we need this grace to be embodied by our neighbors.

Today In Christian History

May 7th

1274 – The Second Council of Lyons convened under Gregory X. attended by approximately 500 bishops, this council accomplished a temporary reunion of the separated Eastern Orthodox churches with the Roman Catholic Church.

1787 – The New Jerusalem Church was formally established in London. More popularly known as Swedenborgianism, its theological tenets were based on the writings of Swedish scientist and mystic Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772). The first congregation in the U.S. was formed in Baltimore in 1792.

1839 – Birth of Elisha A. Hoffman, American clergyman and a prolific writer of Gospel songs. His musical legacy has left the Church such favorites as: “What a Wonderful Savior,” “I Must Tell Jesus,” “Are You Washed in the Blood?” “Glory to His Name” and “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms.”

1899 – Amer Presbyterian missionary James Burton Rodgers, 34, preached his first sermon in the Philippines. Rodgers spent the next 35 years in evangelistic and educational ministries, and is regarded as the first Protestant missionary to the Philippines.

1951 – Religious program “The Circuit Rider” broadcast for the last time over ABC television. Featuring sacred music and biographies of great evangelists, the series had premiered only two months earlier, in March.

Source for Today In Christian History:



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