“Be Prepared” is the well-known motto of the Boy Scouts of America. It’s also a pretty good admonition for successful living.
My scoutmaster used to say, “Prior proper planning prevents a pitifully poor performance.” (Trying saying that three times over.) In almost every situation, the person or group that is best prepared will overcome whatever challenges they face.
I thought of the value of “prior proper planning“ while in complete darkness, walking in water nearly up to my waist. I was walking through Hezekiah’s tunnel, taking up the rear of our Empower Texans group exploring Israel.
The tunnel was built by King Hezekiah approximately 2,900 years ago. Knowing an Assyrian army was planning to attack Jerusalem, Hezekiah ordered the construction of the tunnel to ensure spring water in the area wasn’t available to his enemies when they arrived. He also built up the city’s fortifications and produced weapons for the people. The Israelites were going to be ready!
Yet for all the physical preparations, Hezekiah knew that the people needed to be ready for the coming battle emotionally and spiritually.
“Be strong and courageous,” he is recorded as saying in 2 Chronicles 32:7-8. “Do not be afraid or dismayed before the king of Assyria and all the horde that is with him, for there are more with us than with him. With him is an arm of flesh, but with us is the Lord our God, to help us and to fight our battles.”
And so it must be for us, as well. The most important preparation we can make isn’t in things and plans, but in the depths of our heart. In the end it is not enough to simply be prepared; we must be prepared for the right reasons to do the right things.