If you've read much about Civil War history, you'll recall that, at the Battle of Gettysburg, in Pennsylvania, the Confederate armies were led by General Robert E. Lee. But General Ulysses S. Grant, commander of the Union forces, wasn't there. So, where was he? While General George Meade commandeered Union troops at Gettysburg, General Grant was at the Battle of Vicksburg, in Mississippi. Fought over a nearly two-month period, the battle resulted in a Union victory. One significant result was that the Union now controlled the Mississippi River, splitting the Confederacy in two. Supplies for Confederate troops, once readily available, were no longer close to those in need of food, medicine, clothing, weapons, and ammunition. Without supplies men were put at risk of starvation, sickness-even death. The Confederacy was never the same.
In life it's important to know where your supplies are, and have ready access to them. Like it or not you need certain supplies to succeed in your Christian walk, such as:
- A Bible. What natural food is to your body, the Bible is to your spirit. It's faith food.
- Time with God. It's called fellowship. You need times of worship, thanksgiving, and talking to God, your Heavenly Father, about every area of your life.
- A good Bible-believing (and practicing) local church to attend and get involved in. You need their supply, and they need yours. Mutual supply.
- Fellowship with other believers. If you work around non believers, fellowship with another Christian can be an encouragement to you, as well as to that fellow believer.
- Access to good Bible-based teaching by reputable ministers. Most of what's on the Internet is a bunch of junk, including what some ministers are teaching. There are, however, plenty of good ministries serving up spiritual food you can grow from.
Opportunities to give into the support of good organizations. This is above and beyond tithing through your local church. Giving to missions, the poor-there are qualified people and ministries out there to get involved with. Ask God to show you; ask around. One such place is The Orphans Hands, (www.theorphanshands.org), a ministry in Moldova (Eastern Europe) dedicated to rescuing girls from sex trafficking; boys from slave labor. It's one that my family supports as well.
Philippians 1:19 talks about the supply of the Holy Spirit. By the Holy Spirit, God supplies our supplies. It is up to us to use them. Be thankful for supplies. Keep them near you. Use them continually. You keep your supplies, and they will keep you.
How are your supplies? Smart phones have a Bible app, even if you don't have a Bible of your own. Spend time with God. You need the time with Him-and so does He with you. You get the picture. If you're needing some supplies, ask God for them. He's in the delivery business, so watch for His provision. Stay near your supplies; enjoy life.