Three days after the eventful 9/11 we were suddenly hit directly with powerful Tropical Storm Gabrielle. The power went out and did not come back on for three days. I basically grew up in Florida and in 28 years I had never experienced anything like it. I remember howling winds and branches flying when hurricanes were nearby, but I never remember driving through town like we did that night and seeing total darkness in the middle of a normally busy city. It reminded me of a ghost town.
We had our own home-grown organic beef in the freezer, and lots of delicious homemade applesauce that we didn’t want to lose. We were caught unawares, and were certainly not prepared to live off the grid. Or were we? Thanks to the Y2K false alarm, we did have a generator and some extra fuel that saved our frozen food, and we had a little camp stove and a supply of propane that allowed us to cook as usual.
That widespread power outage caused many people a great deal of stress and loss. For us it was an adventure. My brother also had his family prepared, and that night they hosted a birthday party for one of their children in an otherwise dark neighborhood. Life was interrupted, but didn’t grind to a halt.
Was it foolish to be prepared for the worst, even when it didn’t happen? We don’t think so. We are very glad the worst (Y2K) didn’t happen. But being prepared for the worst has several benefits: it greatly reduces anxiety (notice the Proverbs 31 woman in verse below), and it gets us ready for lesser crises that may come our way.
“She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.” Prov. 31:21 KJV