Because the Lord created us in His image, part of which means being rational, relational, and planning ahead toward good goals, He calls us to do the same. Everyday, we choose to plan (or choose not to plan) for our hygiene, daily schedule of time with others, our tasks alone, preparations for our meals, etc. Planning work and working our plan is part of living in His image.
Yet we don’t always do that well.
This week, I’ll only provide some Scriptures on the subject of planning. Some may be clear at face value. Some may require discussion. Then consider the article below.
- “Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest.” (Proverbs 6:6-8)
- “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” (Proverbs 16:3)”Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.” (Proverbs 19:21)
- “The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes only to poverty.” (Proverbs 22:5)
- “Commit your work to the Lord, and your plans will be established.” (Proverbs 16:3)
- But he who is noble plans noble things, and on noble things he stands.” (Isaiah 32:8)
- Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”— yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” (James 4:13-15)
Why do England’s high-rises keep failing fire tests?
“A Recipe for Disaster…or Success”, by Chaplain Jeff Dillard (27 June 2017)
As you probably know, London lost 79 men, women, and children in last week’s burning high-rise. It was a horrific scene. Chris Cook of Newsnight reports that “Over the past week, the government has been testing high-rise tower blocks in England owned by councils and housing associations. All 95 of those tested so far have been discovered to be covered with an aluminium “rain-screen” exterior cladding that does not meet the required combustibility standards. You would be right to ask: how on earth can this have happened? The short answer is: the organisations responsible for maintaining standards in the building industry have been advising contractors not to take the regulations too
literally.” (http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-40418266) Let’s consider some of the details of the tragedy.
Again, my purpose in any and all articles of this series is not to find fault or to espouse particular ideologies over others. I do, however, think that even tragedies can teach us some basic lessons for our own lives. Today, we will look at some potential applications for protecting our own treasures.
At least four specific and recurring problems with these high-rises have been 1) the use of cladding (materials to coat the walls, roof, etc.) with a low flashpoint, 2) placing those materials in close proximity to heat sources (e.g., water heaters, furnaces, etc.), 3) an inadequate number of fire doors or escapes, and 4) builders and inspectors who did not comply with known standards. If any of these were different, the loss of life could have been much lower. Here are some spiritual parallels.
Many of us have low “flashpoints” to anger in concerns ranging from social injustices to last minute changes. But they only become a problem when we are in close proximity to one of our concerns, there an inadequate number of guards or escapes, and (most importantly) we have few people in our past or present who knowing what’s right and build us for our resilience. So what are we to do?
Again, these high-rises can teach us. First we may need to tell others that we’re under construction. Some may need to keep a distance. But others may need to be part of rebuilding, for they’re part of us. Second, we may need professionals to help us strip away layers of unhealthy coats: skewed beliefs, selfish values, destructive habits, and some of the relationships that reinforce those. Third, we will need new materials: specific beliefs and values, different habits, etc. And fourth, we will need new builders or at least old ones with new attitudes. We just don’t have the resources to do it alone.
Rebuilding can be slow and costly but not as costly as doing nothing in a combustible environment.
If you’d like to read other articles from this series on current events, you can click here.