Equipped for Every Good Work

2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.

2014-01-30 - Equipped for Every Good Work (IMG_8155)The key to being properly equipped for our Christian walk.

If you plan to hike in remote areas, away from civilization where cell phone service is non-existent, or sketchy, at best, it is a good idea to be equipped to handle any situation you might encounter.  In addition to food, water, and extra clothing (weather and season dependent), some of the gear I typically carry, either on my person or in my backpack includes:  a knife (or three), a fire starting kit, a map and compass (even though I carry a GPS unit, it is unreliable in deep valleys with heavy tree cover, and useless when the batteries die), a well-stocked first aid kit, a headlamp and spare batteries, 55 gallon drum liners (emergency shelter or rain cover), rope or paracord, duct tape (many uses, including fire starting), and last, but not least, my Bible.  I have a few other odds and ends in my backpack, but this gives you an idea of some things to consider.

Of course carrying all this gear does you no good if you do not know how to use it.  For example, a topographic map is just a confusing mess of squiggly lines if you do not understand how to read it, and navigating with a compass is not a trivial task if you have never used one before.  Starting a fire is not nearly as easy as you might think, especially in an emergency situation or under adverse conditions.  And, finally, having some basic first aid training and skills practice will make a big difference when you open that first aid kit to treat an injury out on the trail.

In the Bible God has provided us the means to prepare for the situations we will face in our Christian walk, so that we “may be complete, equipped for every good work.”  But, how useful will our Bibles be to us if they sit on the shelf gathering dust?  How much will we profit from the wisdom and teaching of the Almighty God of the universe if we never take the time to study and apply his word in our daily life?  How well equipped will we be if the texts from a Sunday sermon are our only exposure to God’s word?  It takes time, effort, and perseverance to gain a solid understanding of the truths of Scripture.  And, just like wilderness survival skills, you have to practice and train regularly with God’s word to be able to apply it most effectively in times of need.

Read more about my “God is Revealed…“ category of posts

© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2014.

Be Ready In Season and Out of Season

2 Timothy 4:1-4 – I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3 For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4 and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths.

2014-01-17 - Be Ready In Season and Out of Season (IMG_6809)One of our favorite scenic spots to stop for lunch, somewhere off-trail along the Rough Trail. Red River Gorge Geological Area, Daniel Boone National Forest, Kentucky.

Even though we do hike as often as possible in the winter, there are certainly less opportunities to get out hiking this time of year, especially with the extremely cold temperatures we have had recently, seven degrees Fahrenheit as I type this!  There are rare times that the skies are sunny and the temperatures get into the 70s, like January 12th, 2012, the day this photo was taken.  When these “out of season” beautiful days arise, you need to be ready to go if you want to take advantage of them!

Likewise as followers of Christ we need to “be ready in season and out of season” to share the gospel with those around us, as opportunities can present themselves at any time.  Part of the way we stay ready is to be committed in our private devotional life, going to God in prayer and studying his word daily; but, we also need to hear the word preached.  Left to our own devices it is easier to be led astray into false teachings.  As Christians we need the encouragement and reproof of fellow believers to properly grow in our knowledge and faith.  It is also our duty to hold each other accountable, including our leaders, by testing the things that are taught against the written word of God found in the Holy Scriptures.

We certainly live in a time where the teachings of the Christian faith are less and less endured by the world around us.  People are more and more inclined to listen to the false teachings of the secular world rather than the truths of the Bible.  “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” (1 Corinthians 1:18).  As redeemed followers of Christ we have “the word of the cross,” “the power of God” on our side, therefore we have no excuse, we should always “be ready in season and out of season.”

Read more about my “God is Revealed…“ category of posts

© Todd D. Nystrom and Todd the Hiker, 2014.