Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Being Community Ready,

by Greg Ewert  November 6, 2011

Are You Community Ready?
In today's economy, thinking about emergency preparedness is low on just about everyone's list, of priorities. Being prepared isn't about the destructive power of an earthquake, flood, tsunami, or tornado; alone.

Being prepared isn't about a giant emergency, its about a sudden unexpected loss of services (electricity, communications, medical, food, transportation ect..)

Its about you and your neighbors being prepared to face the unexpected; things that will affect everyone on your street, building, or cul-de-sac.

This is especially true if you live in a community of people on fixed incomes. One persons hardship can quickly become a community event... one can quickly become two, three, four... and so on. Networking and Sharing are the keys to peace of mind. Sadly, some actually think that their landlord will come to their rescue. They are so institutionalized, and dependent on the housing authority and social services, that they have lost the ability to think and/or plan on their own.

Their landlords are under no obligation to help them in any way, and their landlords have no plans to assist them in organizing for a disaster or helping them afterwards; I know because I asked them.

When preparing, it is a lot easier to not think about a particular natural disaster. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard these words; "Oh sure, I remember Y2K and its all a bunch of hysteria and propaganda". But we have seen the devastation of the mighty hurricanes and tsunamis over the last decade. We have witnessed, for ourselves, the heartache and even death, brought on by those who were not prepared, and thought Uncle Sam or Big Brother was coming to the rescue.

Before Hurricane Katrina, we were told that the mighty FEMA or our military would come to our rescue. We seen it in movies, all over the Internet, and in the news. After Hurricane Katrina, we were told that you need to learn to survive on your own for up to three days. But even that is a stretch. In most cases, federal emergency responders will not arrive for weeks.

In places like the Pacific Northwest, Oregon and Washington, you can't go anywhere without crossing a bridge. And a moderate earthquake will make 90% of the bridges in the Pacific Northwest impassible.

In researching this subject, I asked a lot of people in low income housing, how they were prepared in case of a natural disaster in Oregon. All but a few said they were going to go to a relatives. So I asked them, how many bridges do you cross getting to your relatives? almost everyone had to cross at least three bridges to get to where they think they will be safe.

Odds are, those bridges will not be there after an earthquake.

Some of the people I talk to are pretty well-to-do. What will you do after a big earthquake and how have you prepared. I was amazed at how many have property up in the mountains that were fully stocked and ready for an emergency. Yet they had done little to nothing to prepare to stay where they are. I asked him the same question, how many bridges will you have to cross to get up to your cabin, and how many big trees are along the road? Not a single one of them had thought of that.

When I questioned local emergency responders about what they were going to be doing after a big earthquake, every single one of them responded with...

"I already have a place picked out, where I will take me, my family and my gun, until the chaos is over".

When planning and preparing, it is best to do so as a community, a neighborhood. You will be the first responder in your community, and your community will be your first responder. As we look at the natural disasters of the last few years, here in the United States; we always hear, my neighbor had to dig me out of my house, apartment, or grocery store. It was always, hours, days, or even a week before emergency responders arrived.

Now you consider the amount of damage that will be done over three states, Oregon Washington and California, the responders will be spread really thin. The smaller communities may never see, FEMA or the military come rolling into their community. These people will be told where to go to find emergency help, it's not going to come to them; or you.

Get to know your neighbors, and have a potluck.  Get to know each others skills, needs, what you have as a community.

Thank You All For Visiting

Greg Ewert

Monday, January 23, 2012

Stepping up to the fight


As children, the Holy Spirit guards and protects us. Here is where we establish our relationship with God. However, after years of milk and cookies, the sweeter things that draw us near to Him, we are expected to learn how to feed ourselves. We are expected to learn how to prepare a meal, set the table, and serve it to those around us.

Then… There comes the day, when hiding and waiting for God to fight our battle, doesn’t work anymore.  There comes a day when we are expected to fight for what has been placed in our custody. 

I meet people all the time that are being beaten by the Devils cohorts. They retreat to isolation, and they are even held captive, in the many prisons of our enemy. In our walk as believers we are expected, at some point, to grow up, to strap on the armor, and fight.

Put on all of God's armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the Devil. {12} For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms. {13} Use every piece of God's armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm. (Eph 6:11-13 NLT)

No… God does not expect us to dive into the mix alone; not always.  There are those times we must stand, with our armor and battle face. 

I had a dream, years ago:

I was standing on a big rock, overlooking some blank rolling hills of sand.  I was a Watchman… standing guard over a territory I was responsible for.  Every now and then, something would pop up over one of those little hills, and I would see a fiery dart heading in my direction.  Bang… Bang… Bang… those darts hit my shield; sometimes more than one or two at a time.  The enemy got really good at disguises, and would get pretty darn close before opening fire; POW! they hit my shield hard and yes, a few got by my shield. My armor saved me, but it hurt. 

After a barrage of darts and arrows, I heard something new.  Like a storm off in the distance… a faint roar at first…

It got louder and louder.  I stood tall, up on my toes, looking out over the rolling hills.  With my eyes strained on the horizon, I caught a quick glimpse of something on fire and coming fast.  It was hugging the surface… disappearing behind the hills, only to pop up  again, as it got closer, and closer. 

Suddenly… there it was.  I could see it clearly.  It wasn’t a dart, an arrow, or a spear.  It was a missile, a rocket of some sort. I barely had a second to raise my shield when it hit.  The explosion was deafening, and there was fire and smoke; but I was still standing. 

One by one… several more rockets hit.  They were not hitting my shield every-time. They were hitting the rock I was standing on as well. Then I noticed, just before the rockets hit, the sky filled with arrows. More and more of these arrows and darts were getting past the hills, the rock, and even my armor.  After a while I was on my knees, my shield was battered, burnt, and full of holes.  My armor was smoldering and I was in pain. 

The roar was louder than before and I couldn’t tell which direction it was coming from. I stood up, and scanned the horizon. I spotted one, two, three… There were four rockets coming from four different directions.   I pulled my shield close and in the back of my mind I thought this was the end. 

I closed my eyes and a few seconds later…  BOOM!… A giant cloud of fire, smoke, and fragments went everywhere.  Stunned, I realized I had not felt the impact.  I opened my eyes to see my friends, they were standing all around me, with their shields acting like a wall.  One by one they turned to me and winked.  As the rockets, exploded and air filled with arrows.

It was only a few minutes, but it seemed like hours, before silence and a cool breeze cleared the air.  Hurting, like I never thought possible, my friends tended my wounds. 


I tried to keep this story short and have left out a lot of details. One lesson to be learned here is…

Well.. there might be more than one lesson here. 


Greg Ewert

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The Prison of Un-forgiveness

You have prayed and prayed, yet things are not turning out the way you hoped… And it seems the promises of God do not apply to you. Why!?

The chains, or prison, of Un-forgiveness can hold both people in bondage. By maintaining Un-forgiveness you could bind God’s hands; if that person is in someway a part of your life; and it will inhibit your prayers.

Look at (Matthew 6: 14-15): "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”

If You do not release your brothers trespasses, God cannot let go of yours. This takes us to Matthew 18:22-35. Notice that the forgiven servant did not forgive. Because he could not forgive and held another in bondage; in prison; he himself ended up in prison right beside him where he was tortured, until he had forgiven or paid his original debt. The only way he had to pay his debt was to forgive the man that he had not forgiven. The torturer or as some translate it, "the tormentors" are there to discipline us, or even as a punishment to turn us away from our Un-forgiveness.

This does not happen because our heavenly Father is a big bully waiting for His chance to club us. It happens because He loves us. He knows the destructive power of Un-forgiveness and seeks to remove this bondage as quickly as possible. The prison of Un-forgiveness is not a fun place to be; often referred to as Gods Wood Shed. You are constantly tormented by the thoughts of revenge or the uneasiness you must endure every time this person is present, either physically or in thought.

The destructive power of Un-forgiveness is greater than any other violation or sin known to either God or man. When you hold someone in this prison you hold them in bondage to the very thing you seek to see changed in them. You can pray until you are blue in the face and it will not do a bit of good (Mark 11:25).

Forgiveness is An Action Word

Be it forgiveness or Un-forgiveness, we are talking about an action word. While praying and seeking God’s wisdom before writing this, the Holy Spirit kept comparing forgiveness to love. Un-forgiveness is the exact opposite of love; practically its mirror image.

Forgiveness is a verb, in relation to one person forgiving another. It comes from the Greek word “hiemi” meaning to let go, suffer or yield up. A paraphrase would be to let go of or release the offense; or cancel the debt. So, to forgive someone would mean you are releasing them from bondage, thus releasing yourself from bondage, or prison.

Our heavenly Father forgives us "as" or after we have forgiven. After we have forgiven then He can deliver us from the evil one; the tormentor. Until we have forgiven, the tormentors have a legal right to torment us.

Love and Un-forgiveness can be compared to nuclear power. Nuclear power’s negative side would be a bomb. Take that same power and apply it positively and it warms homes and families. It supplies lighting and energy that can run many homes.

Love and Un-forgiveness are equal in power and strength. One can utterly destroy and the other can bring healing and warmth. Love can conquer and wipe away Un-forgiveness. Un-forgiveness can conquer and wipe away love. 

Inhibits Our Prayers

“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses." Mark 11:25

Here we see how and why our prayers are inhibited. Have you been standing in faith for something; and never seem to see any results? King David said it better than anyone has ever said it: "Search me, O God, and know my heart;...see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." (Ps. 139:23-24).

Here we see the heart of David. "Search me..." Have you asked God to search your heart for what might be forgotten or misplaced Un-forgiveness? Could there be a wall between you and the very thing you have been praying for?

Sometimes forgiving is harder than giving up your hand. You would much rather loose your dominant hand than forgive his person for what they have done to you. When it comes to an intimate relationships, the littlest things can hurt deep. The hurt goes so deep it strangles the life (love) out of you.

Forgiveness is not a feeling, It is a decision to write off a debt.

Does forgiving mean you have to trust this person? No it does not. Once trust is broken, it must first be repaired and then earned once again. Forgiving someone is very hard and sometimes begins with the willingness to be willing to forgive. Only God can take you to that point. He can help you reach the point of wanting to forgive, if you ask him. Forgiveness is washing his car... not wanting to run over him with it.

The tiniest acts of love can tear down that Un-forgiveness. Your smallest action of love might start with a little prayer for this person. A little "bless them Lord" pulls the tormentors whip back. Then one day you might wrap your arms around them in total love. God reaches down at this point and He personally removes the tormentors from your lives. The healing is well on its way. Now you can work on the trust again. Some get through this process faster than others.

Are you willing? To be willing?

In Prison Over A Lie

Another point and one that has cropped up more and more is: the person who holds onto Un-forgiveness towards another person for something that was never done.

Are you in prison? Holding onto Un-forgiveness on the grounds of a story you made up to bring validity to your testimony or justification? Are there any stories like this in your life? Did you begin to believe the story yourself? Have you been imprisoned over false testimony; your own?

Exaggeration is all a part of the anger and hurt that goes along with separation and depression. Have you exaggerated; do you have anything that you need to make right, so you can enjoy freedom and peace of mind once again? Do you want to be free?

Repeat this little prayer:

Lord, please forgive my Un-forgiveness.
Help me to forgive and release me and (_________)
from the prison of Un-forgiveness. Bless (_________)
and open a door for me to show your love to (_________)
Thank You Lord for hearing my prayer. Amen.

Thank You For Visiting

Greg Ewert

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

God… And being prepared

When it comes to being prepared for an emergency event, Christians seem to be the hardest ones to convince.  Getting ready or being prepared is almost an act of heresy and/or hypocrisy; and a denial of ones faith in a lovey dovey god; a god, or image,  that does not exist. 

When we look at all the stories and parables in the bible, or any religious documents written about God through the Holy Spirit, we do not see lovey-dovey anywhere.

Jesus, the son of God, gave us a stern warning:

Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to 'set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law'; and 'a man's enemies will be those of his own household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me." (Mat 10:34-38 NKJV)

Earth, is a temporary situation. Even our scientists have proven, at least 4 extinction level events in human history. Does this mean we all head to the mountains and wait for the next event; to wipe out 95% of all humans on earth?  Of course not !  That is just plain weird. 

Throughout the bible we see how God warned His people, through dreams and the prophets, of upcoming disasters. His people were always told to prepare.  God could have waved his hand and POOF! caused food to fall on his people, but that is not in Gods character on a national level. 

In Genesis 41 we see how God warned Egypt of a severe famine; and told them how to prepare for it.  The story of Joseph is one of my all time favorites.  And it is only one example of how God, through His Holy Sprit, warns His people of upcoming events that will seem devastating to us humans.   Being prepared is always in Gods plan; and it is His will for His people to be prepared.

I find it amazing how people are more concerned about their image, than they are about people.  I am referring to the “faith image”.  When it comes to being prepared for disasters or loss of services, I get the these words thrown at me on a regular basis: “ Where is your faith brother”…  “what will people think of you and your walk in faith, going around telling people to prepare”.  And the only ones to push me away and isolate me are… the christians.  Or those who go to church and call themselves Christians. 

Jesus Followed up the words above with:

He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man's reward. And whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple, assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward. (Mat 10:41-42 NKJV)

And for all you Lovie Dovie people getting your hate mail started.  When was the last time your preacher preached from Matthew 11. 

Then He (Jesus) began to rebuke the cities in which most of His mighty works had been done, because they did not repent:

Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you.

And you, Capernaum, who are exalted to heaven, will be brought down to Hades; for if the mighty works which were done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment than for you. (Mat 11:20-24 NKJV)

Now that didn’t sound to lovie dovie, did it?
Something to think about. 

Thank You for Joining me Here
Greg Ewert

Monday, January 2, 2012

Stupid - The Pandemic of 2112

There seems to be a pandemic that is spreading across the world as I write this. I look at the headlines this morning and all I can do is shake my head. 

Stupid, seems to have spread at an astronomical rate across the planet.  That's right, a deadly pandemic of stupid.  It's the only word that comes to mind when looking at the choices and decisions people are making right now. 

Have things changed? Or is technology making it possible for us to monitor humanities stupidity in real time.  With the use of technology, something stupid can spread like a deadly virus from a little town in Kansas, to the Kremlin, in just a few seconds.  And then someone grabs the stupid and passes it on. 

What Happened To Common Sense?

These poor young people, as old as 30, using technology to be as stupid as possible, on the Internet, where it will be forever, for anyone to find, for the next 50 years. As long as 5 years ago, I started seeing how people were being denied jobs, for their stupid fun on the internet; and I started to send out the warning.  

It amazes me, how a women, who are looking for a good man, can think she's going to find a “good man”  by posting pictures of her and her girlfriends half dressed and drunk at the local bar or nightclub.  News Flash ladies, good men, will not consider anyone in that picture as a possibility, when it comes to long-term relationships like marriage. 

And the guys are just as bad.  They Get Drunk, take off their shirts, and wrap an AK-47 around themselves… Oh! Wow!  Look! now here is a guy I want to raise my children. 

Lets use some common sense.  You just might grow up one day and/or want to get on a plane.  One day you might have kids, and they will find them old pictures and videos. Or you finally get that one in a lifetime opportunity and guess what…  they are finding those pictures and comments you posted last week-end. 

And should you end up in court for whatever reason, that private account will not be private anymore.

Believe me… one moment of stupid can cost you your dreams.

Thank You For Stopping By

Greg Ewert