The question on the table is how to prepare for the future when both the secular and religious wise men are contradicting each other massively.
I proposed that we can’t really know what is coming, so I am preparing equally for three scenarios that might play out over the next ten years. First, we could lose all our civil rights and end up in a repressive police state. Or we could continue wobbling along as a nation, flirting with catastrophe but never quite going over the edge. Or we could experience a massive move of God unlike anything we have seen before.
Preparing simultaneously for those three highly dissimilar situations is a bit of a challenge. I see my strategy as concentric circles. The highest priority is to invest in the totally portable facets of my life. The second highest is to invest in the durable spiritual imprint I can make on time and land. Third is to invest in people, since there I have the potential for extraordinarily high return on investment.
My fourth priority is caring for tangible resources that do not require much effort to protect. That would be things like money or our website. There are simple strategies we can use to keep what little surplus money we have in a nearly liquid form, and there are some ideas I have brewing to keep the products flowing to the rest of the world through some of our other distributors, even if the US office were completely shut down.
Now compare this to my fifth priority, the things that matter the least, and that is items that are high maintenance. By that I mean buildings, credit rating, reputation and other such things.
I am very concerned about nothing “owning” me in times of dramatic change. In terms of a totalitarian regime, it is a no brainer. If they can take me to prison for no cause or a trumped-up cause, then the civil rights of the citizens are long gone and there is no legal protection for the property and my credit rating or reputation are meaningless.
But think of the other equation. What if God were to move massively? Where would my building (which I lease) fit in? On the one hand, it could be an asset. A building can be a staging ground for all kinds of activities beneficial to a move of God. On the other hand, the lease payment (or a mortgage if I had my own building) is a ball and chain that will limit me from having total flexibility for the King.
I am simply not economically able to do this yet, but I would love to be in the position of being able to shut down the business overnight if I wanted to, so I could devote myself wholeheartedly to serving the King in any way needed, in the event of a major move of God. Lacking that, I do have some plans in place to put the business in the hands of someone else to run, so that I can be nearly free in that kind of situation.
The bottom line is that I have seen a lot of people over the years who wanted to do something dramatic for the King, such as to go on a missions trip or move to a new location but they could not because they were tied down with a big mortgage and a house that simply would not sell in that market.
While I would love to be a home owner again for a number of emotional reasons, I am not pursuing that at the expense of the other priorities. Should I be able to accomplish it without sacrificing something more important, then YES, I would go that direction.
So those are the five areas of my personal priority as I look at an uncertain future.
Now, you may have noticed that family is not mentioned. This is a complex problem which I will explore in the next blog in this series.
Copyright April 2011 by Arthur Burk