40 Days of Repentance | Day 18: Preparation

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Friday is preparation day. It’s a time to spend preparing for the Sabbath—a day of rest. We usually try to wrap up our workweek, cook all of our meals for the weekend and finish any last-minute cleaning before sundown on Friday so that we can enter into that time, which we currently observe through Saturday at sundown.

I used to think preparation was a bad thing. As someone who led worship in Christian churches for many years, I came to believe that preparing for a service was a sign that you didn’t have complete faith in God and trust that the Spirit would lead you wherever He wanted you to go.

I’ve been around a variety of pastors and worship leaders with different personality types. The more charismatic ones were all about showing up and just “letting the Spirit lead.” In some cases, we wouldn’t have our songs picked out until an hour before the service began.

I’ve also been on the other end of the spectrum with pastors telling me when to clap, when to raise my hands and when to smile, which I didn’t enjoy at all. It felt too forced and rehearsed and left no room for the movement of His Spirit. In fact, I think that’s probably what led me to adopt the mindset that it was better not to prepare—or at least not to over-prepare.

Now, I’d say I’m somewhere in the middle. Preparation, to some degree, is a good and necessary thing. We see examples of it throughout Scripture:

  • Noah had to prepare for the flood by building an ark.
  • Preparations had to be made for sacrifices.
  • Yeshua (Jesus) said he was going to prepare a place for us.

At the same time, when you allow the need for “preparations” to get in the way of your relationship with him (lookin’ at you Martha), you could miss the opportunity to sit at his feet (like Mary) and reap the blessings of His wonderful presence.

It’s a balancing act.

There have been times when I’ve procrastinated—put off preparations until the last minute—and I’ve felt the effects almost immediately. I believe there are times when He asks us to prepare, and not listening can have devastating consequences. Noah is one example … if he had simply shrugged off Yah’s request to build the ark, we probably wouldn’t be here today.

Thousands of people in the southeast U.S. took time to physically prepare for the arrival of Hurricane Irma this week. Having bottled water, food, and emergency supplies on hand is certainly not a bad thing. But are we spiritually prepared for what’s coming?

I’m not trying to sound like a doomsdayer here, but something is up. We’ve got earthquakes, floods, hurricanes, mudslides, solar storms and tsunamis happening simultaneously all over the world, and it only seems to be intensifying as time goes on. I can’t say for sure what’s happening or going to happen, but what I can say is that the hand of YHWH is involved. I believe He’s trying to wake us up, calling us to repent, and asking us to prepare.

How?

Physical preparation is great. But spiritual preparation matters more (as I learned during both of my pregnancies and home births.)

Are you praying and heeding His call to repentance? Are you seeking His heart and His ways? Are you rehearsing His Feast Days? Are you reading His Word and asking Him to reveal His truth to you so that you don’t fall prey to a day of deception?

“Sanctify yourselves: for to morrow the LORD will do wonders among you.” Joshua 3:5

This post is day 18 in my 40 Days of Repentance series. Click here to read day 17.

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