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There are many times in our lives that we anticipate what is about to happen and we have time to prepare for the event.

A wedding for instance; months and months of preparation go into the actual planning for the event, which often only lasts for a short period of time. There are the decisions about the venue, the cake, the flowers, the invitations, the food, the time. By the time the wedding occurs, many brides are exhausted, yet they are prepared.

Maybe it’s the arrival of a child. Excitement over the pregnancy soon wears off, as the couple then realizes there are many decisions regarding a place for the baby to sleep, how to decorate the room, the buying of furniture and clothes, a name for the new arrival. Again, there is time to consider the choices and make the necessary preparations.

Another example is that of your children leaving the nest for school. Either kindergarten or college or off to live on their own. Emotionally maybe you were not ready for those days, but at least you had the time to prepare yourself, and hopefully the child.

I remember when I was driving the school bus and the reaction of parents when they brought their child to the bus stop for the first time. Many a tear was shed by both parties. But, both parties made it. All of these situations have allowed the individuals a time of preparation.

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This week, people in Florida and on the east coast are preparing for a hurricane. They had time to "batten down the hatches," acquire food and water, and be ready for whatever might come their way. My son and his family were some of those preparing.

Consider a different situation as a life changing event might occur. An accident, an unexpected diagnosis, a sudden death, a tornado, an explosion. These incidents happen without warning. Oh, there may be some signs of trouble and warnings, but not enough to truly prepare for the outcome.

What do you do then? I look at the condition of our world today and wonder if we are truly prepared for whatever lies ahead. Are you emotionally, physically, mentally, financially, and spiritually prepared for the future?

“The times, they are a-changing” is a phrase that we have heard in every generation. I guess as I grow older, I realize even more, how important it is for all of us to be totally prepared as best we can. In every part of our lives, we need to make certain that we are doing our best to be fully prepared. At some point and time there will be a critical decision you need to make and if you are ready, the choice will come more easily. Eternity is forever, so make certain you are prepared. Don’t be caught unaware. There are no excuses.

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Audrey B. Unruh is a local columnist, who can be reached at zwiebach@charter.net

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