Monday, August 29, 2005

Road Marching

Road Marching is what soldiers do. I guess its what makes us soldiers. Its not the long hours shifting your pack, picking the next point to walk to, and wishing the miles would click off a little faster that makes road marching so special. Its the people you endure it with. Suffering together builds something that can't be bought. In our training world these people happen to be brand new soldiers. Most of them have never walked more than a mile, much less walked ten in full "battle rattle". Its hot where we are too. The humidity coats you like oil in the morning. You can't get away from it. The most interesting fact is that these kids that I walk with have all volunteered to be here. They've agreed to put themsleves through this stuff, knowing that in about six months they'll get on a plane for Iraq or Afghanistan. They read the headlines. They know the risk, yet they continue to come. There's alot of talk about recruiting shortfalls. That shouldn't be the headline. The headline should be that in spite of it all they still volunteer, they still come. As you look at this picture imagine where these soldiers are going. As they walk away from you imagine all the homes they left behind, all the crying moms and proud dads, all the little boys and young wives. Be grateful today that there are 19 and 20 year olds willing to go.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

This is my little girl who isn't so little anymore! It was taken by my mom on a visit to my brother's place up in Michigan. It looks suspiciously like she's picking her nose, but I thhink its probably just a scratch!

Saturday, August 27, 2005

This my friend Chris from texas. He's "over there" right now. He keeps a fabulous journal online and I encourage all of you to check it out. As you read and hear about all the protests and other demotivating stuff try checking out his online journal. I think you'll be pleased to know what just one soldier is doing to make a difference. He's giving shoes away to children. Imagine that! A soldier giving away shoes. Sounds like there's more to being a soldier than conquest doesn't it? In Micah 6:8 we get sort of a picture of what I beleive a soldier ought to be. Read this and I'll try to explain. "He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God?"
There's three things there that I see my friend Chris doing.
  1. He's doing justly. He's righting wrongs. I hope that is not too idealistic for you, but if you had lived under the Taliban, you'd know what I'm talking about. He's also there elimnating a place for more "bad guys" to find a home to their hatred.
  2. He's loving mercy. He's taking care of those that can't take care of themselves. He's being a blessing. He's putting shoes on the feet of Afghanstan's future.
  3. He's walking humbly with his God. I know him. He loves the Lord. He's lving out his faith.

I hope as you read this you'll pray for Chris and maybe stop by his web-site and hopefully you can help him shoe the shoe-less. Its just too easy!

Ya'll have a great day!

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Tomorrow I'll be officating a gravesite service for a veteran of WWII. What an honorable tradition the military has for its fallen comrads no matter the age. This week all over our country old and young alike are being laid to rest. Some have lived full lives after having served this country, some have been cut down in their prime. No matter the circumstnace the service is always the same. The volleys will be fired, taps will be played and a flag will be given. It happens the same way every time. Its all done for a reason. It can be summed up in one word. Honor. My prayer is that we will not forget that word in these confusing days. Honor remains. It remains because honor origionates in our Creator. He is the author of all that is honorable. He showed the menaing of that word by His honorable actions. His self-less service to mankind is the most honorable of all. As you go about your day remeber that. Remember that men and women have died for this country. Remeber too that your Savior died for you.

Below is what the Officer in Charge says to every recipient of a flag at a military funeral.

“This flag is presented on behalf of a grateful nation as a token of our appreciation for the honorable and faithful service rendered by your loved one.”

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

This is me working! I know there are alot of people who go to work every day and make sure products are made, sold and delivered. Some people get to make tons of money at what they do. Some people are looking for that next great job, the greener pastures. I think I've found a piece of the back 40 that I want to stay in for a while. I love my job. I get to get up real early (by the way, I hate mornings). I get to run and do push-ups with kids half my age. I also get to throw on a big heavy ruck sack and step off on road marches. We sweat. We hurt. But thats just fine with me. There's just something irreplacable about knowing you are exactly where God wants you to be. Contentment in each day can really be priceless. So this is a picture of me being content at what I do

This fine looking fellow is my Chaplain Assistant. He's a hard charger!He's SFC (newly promoted) Dan Roberts. He makes my job so easy. He's gifted with computers and creates all kinds of cool stuff for me to use on my machine. He also keeps the Chaplain in line. He's got 13 years experience in the Army. He's got a great wife named Patty and they have a son on the way. His name is Logan. He'll be joining us to breathe air in November. They also have their niece Chelsea living with them.

Where have I been?

It has been months since I've written. I am now at FT Jackson SC working as a BTN Chaplain for basic training soldiers. I work between 12 and 15 hours every day. We have over 960 soldiers and they'll be graduating to go on to their next training environmet very soon. They come from all over the world to train with us. Their stories are amazing. We have small town kids from Tennesee to kids from the inner city of New York and Detroit. They hail from farms in the midwest, to the Nappa valley in CA. The come here from Egpty, Puerto Rico, Africa and other countries from all over the world. They come to train. They come to challenge themselves. They come fully aware that they'll be in harms way very soon. They all voluteer willingly. Its amazing to watch. I am proud to serve with them and minister to them. In the last 6 months over 60 soldiers have come to faith in Christ here in our chapel services. God is indeed moving and working in our midst. This generation is so spiritually hungry. They hunger for truth and real fellowship. They long for meaning and to be a part of something bigger than themselves. I have no idea what we'll say about these young people 20 years from now, but I imagine this group, these young volunteers will have a profound effect on history as we know it. More to follow. Hooah

The songs of life- Thanks to mom

My home was filled with music and people growing up. Mom loved music and can play an assortment of instruments but her favorites are th...