Most people know that Mormons store food in case of emergency. We do this so that we can always “be prepared” for whatever life might bring. Mormons have been doing it for years, but the practice goes back to biblical times. People have always been better off when they are prepared to take care of themselves.
What most people don’t know is that the Mormon church teaches self-reliance in more than just food storage. The LDS church teaches its members that they should be self-reliant in the following areas:
- Education: Mormons are told that they should get as much education as possible. This starts with the basics; reading, writing, and math. It stems to communication skills, and many other areas. We are taught that the more we can learn, the better off we’ll be in this life, and the more able we will be to take care of ourselves and others.
- Physical health: In the Mormon church we have a teaching called the “Word of Wisdom.” It was given to us in 1833, and it warns against the dangers of tobacco, smoking, drinking, and using addictive substances. It speaks about the health benefits of eating right and exercising. We try to follow these basic principles to be physically health.
- Employment: We are taught in the Mormon faith that we should prepare and train for a good job that interests us and meets our financial needs. Training and skill building is encouraged as part of self-reliance in employment. We are also taught that we should give an honest day’s work to our employer.
- Home storage: This is where the food storage comes in. You can read more about it on my food storage page.
- Resource management: Avoiding debt and saving for the future has long been a teaching in the Mormon church. We are taught to give generously to the poor, and to pay all of our obligations. We are encouraged to avoid wasting our time, talents and other resources, by budgeting and managing ourselves to the best of our ability.
- Spiritual, emotional and social strength: These areas are developed as we build relationships with our family members and friends, and as we continue to learn and grow in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
By working hard and dedicating oneself to being self-reliant in these areas, we are better prepared to help others while on this earth. On the other hand, if we don’t work hard and manage our time, talents, money and other resources, we won’t ever have the opportunity or ability to help others. Being self-reliant gives individuals, families, and nations, the ability to care for others in the way the Lord has outlined; through charity and love, springing up out of the heart.