To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
“…the truth shall set you free.” These are some incredibly powerful words. They are also words that have been misused and taken out of context as much or more than any others in the Bible. It is not just any truth that will set you free or truth in general. It is the truth of Jesus Christ. If you follow Him and His teachings, if you believe in Him as your Lord and Savior, as the Son of God, sent to pay for our sins and reconcile us to God then you will be free. That is the truth that will set you free.
Dear Lord Jesus, I believe in Your truth and thank You for that truth. I thank You for the freedom and peace that comes from accepting that truth. Amen
Today I am Thankful For:
Oh Lord, thank you for all of us being on the mend and recovering. Please continue to heal up and strengthen us.
Another mostly wasted week. I did make it to physical therapy for my shoulder and walked a couple of days this week. I put a few miles on the new boots in a tactical training class today but that’s the extent of it.
I am still not making much progress here. I am still recovering from the upper respiratory infection and bronchitis. No gym time for me.
I have started walking again. I walked my normal, half mile loop several times towards the end of the week. On my first walk my watch warned me of a high heart rate but not on the next one. In either case I am maintaining a reasonable pace and not going too fast.
I went to my first session of physical therapy for my shoulder. She gave me a list of exercises and stretches to start out with and that’s where my efforts to get fit stopped.
I have been fighting a severe cold which filtered down into my lungs. I went to the doctor before it could turn into pneumonia but that means exercise beyond walking up the stairs to my office is off the table until next week.
I must say that is not an auspicious start for 2022.
But seek His kingdom, and these things will be provided for you.
God will provide for our needs if we focus on His mission for us and on Him.
Help me to keep my eyes on You and my focus on Your kingdom. Give me strength and wisdom to avoid the temptations of Babylon. Please drive the darkness from our lives. Rebuke and banish the spirits that are dragging on us. Fill us with Your holy light.
Today I am Thankful For:
You have blessed us so bountifully we can never be as grateful as You deserve but we truly are grateful.
In Part 1 we looked, at a high level, at what specific scenarios we are preparing for. In this post we will look at the plan we have put together for becoming more prepared in 2022.
We will use the same format as we use in the Preparing For the Resistance series of posts:
For 2022, I want to complete a detailed study of four books of the Bible.
Perform three additional service projects per year
I don’t know of anyway to specifically strengthen myself mentally for what is coming. Strengthening myself spiritually and physically requires and will build mental toughness. Tactical training that forces a fighting mindset strengthens mental toughness. As does a basic awareness of what is happening in our nation and our world.
An even tougher question is how to help those around me become stranger mentally without discouraging them…
First and foremost, I want to get my shoulder squared away and healed so I can work and fight more effectively.
I want to lose 15-20 pounds
I will get myself in good enough cardio condition to run half a mile and be able to pass the Marine Corps Combat Fitness test and complete a “Murph Challenge.”
I want to get Wonderful Wife into a regular workout routine.
Finally, I need to get off my duff and get a fully functional security system set up and running as well signing up for a monitoring service for the system.
Pass my exam for a Ham license
Complete a medical training class
Complete at least six tactical training classes during the year.
Be More Resilient
We are in the process of building up our stockpiles and would like to complete that in Q1 of 2022.
Fill in the holes identified in the 100 Things That Disappear In A Collapse exercise.
Our bugout bags are a mess and have been pilfered through the lock-downs of 2020 and 2021. We need to get these ready to go at a moment’s notice.
The same goes for my get home bag. It’s been so long since I really left the house that I need to get this back back in shape and restocked.
I also want to put together a get home back/crate/tub for my Hippy Dippy daughter in San Antonio.
I need to do a test run on a number of critical gear items; single room air conditioner, new propane heater, butane powered burner, propane stove, and our lanterns.
Add $24,000 to our savings/investments
Write our will
Purchase a prepaid funeral plan
Buy a backup generator
Buy a small solar charging system that can be used for charging electronic devices
Those are my goals for 2022. How about you? Do you have a prep plan for next year? Feel free to share it in the comments below.
About this time every year I try to take a little time to reflect on my general state of preparedness and make some plans for the coming year. It is easy to get caught up in things that are fun or easy and overlook critical items that are not as much fun or not as easy to accomplish. Having a plan at the beginning of the year helps make that what is most important gets taken care of.
The first thing we do is to decide what we should be preparing for. This has remained pretty consistent since Hurricane Harvey:
Death – Death is a given. We will all die at some point it is just a matter of when. We have both accepted Jesus Christ as our savior and have received His grace so while we are not exactly ready to go shuffling off we know we will be with Him in eternity. From our perspective, the most important prep of all is handled. However, neither of us wants to be burden on those we leave behind so there is still some things we need to take care of in order to feel fully prepared. Specifically, we need to get our wills done and purchase a funeral policy so those costs and arrangements are out of the way.
Retirement – Hopefully, this happens and happens before item number one. We were poor as church mice when we got married and it took everything we had to raise the kids and make sure they had what they needed so we go a late start on retirement planning. We are playing catch up on this big time. I contribute as much as possible to our 401k but we also need to build up other investment and annuities to make sure we can retire and not have to eat out of a dumpster. Based on the current state of the Social (in)Security program, we are not counting on it at all.
Hurricane – On average a major storm hits this area about every ten years so we should be good for a bit. Averages are funny things and we don’t take it for granted that we could get hit at anytime during the season and need to be ready.
Flood – This was never an issue until Hurricane Harvey but it weighs heavily on our planning at this point.
Financial Collapse – Well, this isn’t so much a possible scenario as it is one we are living through right now. Wonderful Wife was laid off twice this year and inflation is tearing into our savings and disposable income like a pig into slop. I believe we are in the early stages of a financial collapse or at least some of the hardest economic times in living memory.
Social Disruption – Have you seen the news? Again, I think we are already on that ride we are just slow part of the ride before the bottom drops out.
These are the scenarios we are trying to prepare for in Part 2 we will look at how we plan to be better prepared for them.
I am changing up the format of this series just a little bit. In my post Prepare For The Resistance I outlined how I think patriots should be preparing for the dark days ahead. To reinforce those recommendations I am formatting these posts to match up with them. We’ll run that way for a few months and see how it goes.
As a Christian, studying The Word helps strengthen my faith. This month I continued my study of the Gospel of John.
Prayer is another way to strengthen ourselves spiritually. This month I continued my regular, daily prayers and continued to pray for my 50 closest neighbors.
Fellowship with other believers and fellowship with God is a critical component to maintaining spiritual strength. This month I continued teaching Sunday School and attending church.
I am really at a loss on how to toughen up mentally. I try and keep aware of the threats around us so I am not taken off guard. I am doing my small unit tactical training which does definitely toughen me up mentally as well as building skills. Outside of that I am not sure what else I can do. Please leave comments in the suggestions area below if you have ideas.
I went back to the doctor for my shoulder. Surgery will not be required at this pointy. He gave me a cortisone shot, a course of anti-inflammatory medication and muscle relaxers and I will be starting physical therapy in January (soonest available appointment). In the meantime he also wants me to take it easy until I start with the physical therapist.
I (mostly) continued hitting the gym in my effort to get into better shape. With the medical appointments, work, the holidays and some personal matters I have missed more days that I normally would. Now, if I could just get wonderful Wife to join me…
I learned how to use Chirp to program my radios.
Attended another tactical training class on small unit tactics.
Be More Resilient
We took advantage of various holiday sales to stock up or purchase a lot of stuff that we felt we would need in the coming dark times. Hope you did too.
I keep Rite in the Rain notepads in all my packs and bags. We picked up a few spares for extra bags as well as for replacements.
9mm (300 rounds)
5.56 (120 rounds)
Restocked the primary pantry from our emergency pantry. We have started to increase the amount of food we are storing in the emergency pantry. I am working hard to find places to store is and rotate it properly. I have cleaned out a space that should work for another shelving unit and ordered it but it will be a bit before it comes in.
We purchased an additional eight mantles for our propane lanterns. If we are in need of using these lanterns we probably won’t be in a position to get extra mantles.
I purchased a pair of red dot optics. The original plans was that one would be for training/backup rifle and one for my “fighting” rifle. They are very similar optics from the same manufacturer but the one I planned to mount on the fighting rifle is built a little tougher and includes an anti-reflection device (kill flash) the other will be for my training/backup rifle where durability is not quite as important.
When I saw a really good deal from Palmetto State Armory on complete 5.56 upper receiver. I picked one up and mounted the second red dot sight and backup iron sights to it. That gives me one upper set up for longer range and one for shorter range and I can switch between them without having to go to the range and zero in the rifle.
I was able to get out to the range and zero the optic on the training/backup rifle but haven’t been able to get back out and do the same on the new upper. While I was at it I spent a few rounds just practicing with both rifles and my primary carry handgun.
I picked up another AR lower, trigger, and lower parts kits. I am thinking about filing a Form 1 and building a Short Barreled Rifle (SBR). I got rid of all my AR pistols when the Biden ATF started talking about coming after them and I miss having a nice compact self-defense weapon like that. I also hear the wait times on electronic Form 1’s is not too ridiculous.
I decided to upgrade my war belt and purchased the Blue Alpha Double Belt Rig from Warrior Poet Society. To take advantage of the new rig I also purchased a new holster to provide better retention and less bulk.
O-Light (yes, I know, made in China) ran a number o specials over the holidays and I made the most of it. I purchased a new weapon mounted light that is more powerful than the one I had on the rifle previously but with less weight. A periscope style light that can clip to my gear or be worn as a headlamp and (yet more) key chain/pen lights. All in all I was able to add a lot of lighting for relatively little cash.
I added a bolt carrier group (BCG) last month and added two more this month. They were on sale at a really good price. For the time being they will be spares for our defensive rifles. When the time comes for each of the grand kids to get their ARs I will already have BCGs for them.
Wonderful Wife surprised me with an early Christmas present. A CZ Scorpion Evo pistol equipped with all the cool add-ons; Magpul grip, pistol brace, Magpul magazine release, and extended bolt handle. Once tested and sighted in it will become my primary home defense firearm.
We added a couple of 15-round P365 magazines to the inventory. I like to have 9 mags per self-defense firearm and this puts us at that level for the P365s. We also took advantage of sales to add some AR-15 magazines to the inventory. We are now at our minimum inventory levels on magazines for all defensive firearms.
Last month we purchased a propane heater for use if we lose power in winter. This month I purchased the hose that allows the use of larger grill type propane bottles. Thanks to Prepper365 on the suggestion on which one to go with.
Added two more tourniquets. One for my chest rig and one for my plate carrier. I primarily use CAT tourniquets from North American Rescue.
Purchased two additional Baofeng radios and two extended batteries them. I programmed them with a number of channels and frequencies that would be useful in a disaster scenario.
We added money to our investment account from Wonderful Wife’s paycheck and also invested a smaller amount in crypto and precious metals (silver).
We have split the precious metals we own between a few different locations for quite some time. I was doing a little “load balancing” between the sites and as part of the inventory I found that we had an extra tenth of an ounce of gold that was not on my inventory sheet. Wonderful Wife also found a silver dime while out and about. God is good.
Continued moving money from savings to an investment account in order to try and minimize the loss of value through inflation. I can only move $150/per month without incurring penalties.
I ran the generator for 15-20 minutes to help prevent carburetor issues and make sure it will be good to go if it is ever needed. This is a recurring monthly task.
I found the small, camping style propane tanks in stock at a sporting goods store and purchased two more.
That’s it for me. That’s what I prepped this month. How about you? What did you Prep this month?