Letter Re: The Most Important Preparedness

Dear James,
Recently, a friend of mine just took his own life, leaving behind a wife and three young children.  He loved to talk about being prepared and would spend hours reading survival blog.  As far as “preparedness” goes, he seemed to be very prepared for TEOTWAWKI, having spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on guns, ammo, a bug out vehicle, all the medical and survival supplies you could think of, etc.  He also had military training, martial arts training, and was an excellent marksman, if anyone was prepared, he seemed to be ready.  However, in the end, he would take himself out, leaving his wife and three children, without a father, protector, or bread earner.  I believe that while he was so focused on preparing for TEOTWAWKI, that he forgot to take care of himself and his family.  I believe that instead of looking to God to be his protector and to take away his burdens, he looked to himself.  Disillusioned, he turned to alcohol and marijuana for comfort, which lead to marital problems, depression, anxiety, and ultimately he chose to take himself out, rather than face his problems.

Alcoholics have high rates of major depressive disorders, and the risk of suicide is 5 to 20 times higher.  Further, one out of every three suicides under the age of 35 is related to alcohol.  Alcohol works on the prefrontal cortex, inhibiting the areas of the brain related to self-control and judgment.   “Chronic alcohol misuse can cause psychotic type symptoms to develop, more so than with other drugs of abuse. Alcohol abuse has been shown to cause an 800% increased risk of psychotic disorders.”

Marijuana is also associated with worsening of paranoid symptoms, with its effect on the pre-frontal cortex and amygdala.  Thus, those under its influence are more likely so see patterns that don’t exist leading to schizophrenic like paranoid symptoms.

My friend often would talk about his faith in God, but trying to work out his own problems and turning to substance abuse, he forgot some of the Bible promises like Isaiah 26:3 “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”  and Isaiah 54:17 “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper.”  Thus, in preparing for TEOTWAWKI, he neglected the most important preparation, that of learning to trust in God, who will be our ultimate source of protection and salvation. –  S.I.

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