God's Roadmap

Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; let Your good Spirit lead me on level ground (Psalm 143:10 NASB).

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Tips for Disaster Preparedness

by Barbara Latta

It’s that time of year when hurricane warnings dominate the news. Florence is wreaking
Tips for disaster preparedness
havoc on the Carolina coast and no one knows which way she will go from there. Thousands are without power and flooding is rampant.

Disasters happen every year in all parts of the world. Wildfires, earthquakes, tornadoes and flooding can occur anytime. Being caught unaware or unprepared can leave you and your family without the necessary provision for life.

In the event of a disaster that does not require leaving the home, we could be living for days or weeks without electricity. Pre-planning can avoid scarcity and empty shelves. If homes do not have electrical power, neither will the stores, banks, ATM’s or gas stations.

The following tips for disaster preparedness can save a lot of complications and maybe save lives:

  • Store a supply of bottled water. Calculate how much is needed for the entire family, including pets, for at least one month. If there is time before the disaster strikes, fill bathtubs with water in the event water lines become contaminated. At least then there will be a supply of water for washing clothes, dishes or yourself.
  • Keep vehicle as full of fuel as possible at all times. If the entire community is evacuating, gas lines require long waits. Also, if there is no power, gas pumps will not work.
  • Put a first aid kit in vehicles along with flashlights, a blanket or two, and a small compressor for low tires.
  • Try to keep an amount of cash on hand in a safe, but easily accessible place. If ATM’s don’t work, neither will credit card machines in stores.
  • Pre-packaged food in sealed containers is available for purchase at many outlets. Buying a few month’s supply of this type of nourishment can provide what is needed in the event stores are over-run with a stampede of panicky people. These packages only require adding water and could be prepared on an outdoor grill or campfire.
  • Keep fuel levels as high as possible in propane tanks for grills.
  • Propane lanterns can last longer than candles and produce brighter light.
  • Buy a generator.
  • Refill medications as often as possible to have extra supplies available.
  • Pack a container such as a large plastic foot locker and keep important papers such as passports, birth certificates and other irreplaceable or hard to replace items inside. Pack extra medications, water, food, flashlights, and medical kits. The entire container could then be picked up and taken in the event of evacuation.

We never know what awaits us in the future and proper planning can save us a lot of headaches and pain. Most of the time we do not think of having emergency items stored away until it is too late to do so.

What other tips could you share for disaster preparedness? Share your thoughts. 


Sunday, September 9, 2018

Remembering 9/11

By Barbara Latta

Seventeen years ago our nation was paralyzed in a day like no other since December 7, 1941.  We watched in horror as Islamic terrorists flew planes into buildings murdering thousands of people.
Remembering 9/11

Because of heroic actions by some passengers on another plane, more tragedy was avoided as that man-driven airborne missile crashed into the ground.

Here are the statistics that have transpired because of that one event:

  • 2,996 killed
  • 6,000 injured
  • 1,000 died later from exposure to debris
  • 1,883 military have died in Afghanistan fighting the war
  • 3,836 military have died in Iraq

May we never forget those who lost their lives on that tragic day; and we should always remember those heroic firefighters and law enforcement members who gave their all in an attempt to save more.

Feel free to share your thoughts or post a memorial about September 11, 2001.

Sunday, September 2, 2018

God's Labor Day - Enter His Rest

by Barbara Latta
God's Labor Day - Enter His Rest

The first recognition of a day to honor the labor of American workers was in the late 1800’s. Later, a national holiday was enacted to commemorate the achievements and contributions of workers to the economy and society.

Labor Day has now become an extended weekend dedicated to shopping and barbecues—a day of rest from the labors of jobs and a time to enjoy family and friends.

Why is it so easy for us to rest from our physical work, but resting in God is an unattainable goal?

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Avoid the Comparison Trap

by Barbara Latta

Have you ever sent out invitations to a pity party and then answered them? Maybe invited a
few friends? Or brought gifts to yourself?

Why do we do this to ourselves? The source of our party springs from the fountain of comparison.

We look at the accomplishments of others through rose colored glasses, but we use a magnifying glass to look at what we think are our deficiencies.

After listening to a successful author teach a workshop the opportunity for comparison whispered in my ear.

When my kids were growing up, the voice compared me to other mothers.

Despite good grades in school and praise from employers, career and educational opportunities told me I was lacking.

The voice of comparison has no reprieve for the victim; it only brings pity to the victim’s mind. We can get so involved in the party, we blow out the candles on the cake, open the gifts and indulge in the unhealthy confection of despair.

How can we pop the balloons from this celebration of misery?

  • By rehearsing victories and blessings in our lives.
  • By reading what God says about us.  For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11).
  • By giving ourselves affirming statements.  How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! (Psalm 139:17).

We must follow the plan God has for our individual lives instead of trying to live someone else’s. We can learn from those who have gone before us, but we can’t live their plan.

Paul’s advice through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit shows us how to avoid the comparison trap. But let each one examine his own work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another. For each one shall bear his own load (Galatians 6:4-5).

How do you reply to invitations to pity parties? Share your thoughts.


Sunday, August 12, 2018

Pedophilia...Is this the next sin accepted as normal?

by Barbara Latta

A recent TED talk given by Miriam Heine in Germany has introduced the concept that pedophiles are born that way and we should all find a way to accept them.
Pedophilia.. is this the next sin accepted as normal?

I have often wondered when something like this would invade society after government policies forced acceptance of homosexuality as a “norm” and required shared restrooms in public places and legalized marriage of people of the same sex.  

When the gate is opened it leaves no boundary that would stop other sinful behavior from being accepted by society.

Monday, July 30, 2018

The Best Defense for Offensive Situations

by Barbara Latta

Have you ever found yourself listening to offensive reports on TV or radio and argued back at the electronic device? At times, I have fallen into this trap even though talking back to it doesn't change anything. Every media outlet carries offensive opinions and angry outbursts from people who are upset about something that doesn't please them.
The best defense for offense

Our ears and eyes can soak up negativity and the constant stream going into our minds can have a lasting effect if we are not careful to stop the flow. Even when we think we are not affected, a mood change can be a key we are letting poison control our emotions.

We do have the power to flip the switches on news spouting technology, but we can't turn off the opinions of others. Refusing to live in offense is a choice we make, but the power to make that choice requires discipline in the Word of God. These situations can be used as opportunities for growth when handled according to God's principles.

Here are some instructions from the Lord to help us grow:
  • Realize your worth does not come from someone else's opinion or actions. Our value comes from God not the news media, entertainment or politics.

To the praise of the glory of his grace, by which He made us accepted in the beloved (Ephesians 1:6 NKJV).

  • Anchor your personality in Christ and take possession of the inheritance He gave you. We have an inheritance that is far superior to anything this world can give. 

In him we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will (Ephesians 1:11 NKJV).

  • Realize the words are a reflection of the condition of the heart of a person who probably does not know God.

They are darkened in their understanding, alienated from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, due to the hardness of their heart (Ephesians 4:18 ESV).

For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions (2 Timothy 4:3 ESV).

  • Realize allowing offense into your life doesn't change the situation, but it can change you into an angry and bitter person.

Do not take to heart everything people say, lest you hear your servant cursing you for many times, also, your own heart has known that even you have cursed others (Ecclesiastes 7:21-22 ESV).

The best defense for offense is found in Philippians 1:11, being filled with the fruits of righteousness which are by Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.

Allowing the fruit of the Spirit to bloom when the opportunity for offense comes will stop the progression of the atmosphere of anger to thrive in our sphere of influence. We can't control other people, but we can control our response to them. When we stand strong and avoid being drawn into negativity, we are growing in maturity and spiritual strength.

How do you handle offensive situations?

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Swimming with Sharks

by Barbara Latta

A popular resort activity is diving with sharks and feeding them. People pay money to get
Swimming with Sharks
into the water with an animal that has the capacity to eat them. I am not one of those tourists. When I have been in the water I am constantly looking for anything that might want to feed on me. Once while snorkeling in the Caribbean I was enjoying the clear water and view of tropical reef below me. A school of fish rushed underneath, and I was thinking, “Wow, what a wonderful sight!” until I had another thought, “What if something is chasing them?” My wonderment changed to fear even though I didn’t see any predators around.