Keeping the Faith During a Disaster
People tend to ask “Where was God” when a disaster strikes. It is hard to say how any of us would react in the face of a disaster. You may have done your due diligence in emergency preparedness, but when the time comes, will you be able to hold onto your faith? It could shake your spiritual foundation. The Chilean miners trapped for over two months underground in 2010 survived because they reminded each other to stand in their faith.Whatever your spiritual beliefs are, being engulfed in a disaster is when you must stay grounded in those beliefs. You must trust that you did everything you could have to prepare for this situation. You maintained long term food storage, assembled your survival kit, practiced survival skills, and formulated an evacuation plan. The key to survival in an emergency is maintaining a positive, upbeat attitude. Take steps to help remind yourself of this during the ordeal by doing things like putting notes in your survival kit about where you place your faith. Pack literature from your particular faith. Practice a daily ritual during the ordeal to help center yourself and stay in control. Trust that because of your preparation, you will know how to handle each situation as it arises. Another way to maintain a positive outlook in the aftermath of a disaster is to remind yourself of better times. Look at family photos, play cards or other games, and tell stories of past vacations. Endorphins help us feel better and exercise, both physical and mental, is a great way to release endorphins. Come up with some simple and safe exercises to keep your body and mind fit.Find a way to help others in need. Help them by sharing supplies, or by offering guidance and knowledge, or by simply reciting words of encouragement. This will help restore your faith and build faith in those around you.Disasters can bring out the best in people. Strength is increased when communities pull together for the common good. Questions of “why” are not helpful in the moment. Approach the situation from a position of love and compassion which builds energy. Leave no room for doubt or anger, which depletes energy. Work toward emergency preparedness so that you have a stable platform to start from. An emergency will either weaken or strengthen your resolve. It’s your choice.-Gary Jenkins-Gary Jenkins is a father and husband living in Oregon who is a wildlife rehabilitation and outdoor adventure enthusiast.