Tuesday, February 12, 2008

CAT 31

Its graduation week for the Civil Affairs Qual course! Pictured left are my team-mates from CAT-31. The civilian dude is Dale from the McKinney Lake Fish Hatchery, he happened to get in our picture. From left to right are Joe "I've never been fishing" Sotile, Csaba Lukasc "The Enforcer", Brandon "Yes I do have an appointment!" Kreitz, The Chaplain, Dean "Hillbilly" McCoy, Ty "Ranger Joe or Catfish" Short, Beau "Mastiff" Dobbs, Casey "West Point" Baldwin and Ed "no nickname" Vela.

I could not have asked for a better team to work with. Everyone worked so hard and pulled together and made our team efficient, but it also made it fun to train with them. We grew close and I now have friends for life. I thank God for allowing me to be a part of this class with these fine people. Brandon and Dean are leaving soon for downrange missions and Joe follows on later in the year, keep them in your prayers. The rest of us will soon follow as our branch is a mobile one. We say bye to Csaba as he goes back home to Slovakia. I pray that God would allow us to see him again, he is a blessing to know, a quiet hard working man with a great sense of humor. I know his family has missed him terribly. To everyone in CAT 31... thanks and I will pray for you regularly. Thank you all!
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Isaam

This is Isaam. He's a new freind of mine. We met in an unsual way at FT Bragg of all places. He's a role player in some of scenarios that we are put through in our training and Isaam played the part of the religous leader in the village we were training in. I noticed something in his eyes as I spoke through a translator. There was a kindess in them as you can see. We played roles all week long and finally at the end of training we got to meet as men, not actors. The first thing he said to me was, "He is the Savior!" and then I knew as I had suspected through those penetrating eyes, that Isaam was and is a believer. We hugged and got to spend a few very special moments together. I work in world where faith in Jesus is not something people talk openly about if at all. Only Chaplains wear it literally on their uniforms. To be able to just talk about the goodness of Jesus with this special man was worth the 20 mile road march and choking down all the MRE's of a 7 day field exercise.

Isaam informed me that he was from San Diego. I asked him where he went to church and he said that he went to Shadow Mountain Community church pastored by David Jeremiah. For those of you that don't I became a Christian 14 years ago not in a church or at a crusade or in a Bible study. I was lead to Christ by David Jeremaih over the radio as I listened in my car. It turns out that Isaam knows Dr. Jeremiah personally. Many people can point to their spiritual fathers. My son has me as the man who lead him to Christ. You may have that one person that you know that was instrumental in your faith journey. My spiritual father has no idea that I exist, that is until I met Isaam. Isaam went back to California and shared with Dr Jeremiah this week that there is a Chaplain in the Army that is engaged in ministry becasue he had been faithful 14 years ago to presnt the person of Jesus on the radio of all places. I am grateful today for men like Isaam and Dr Jeremiah. I am grateful that God ties up loose ends for us and sometimes in the randomness of life He lets us know that His plan is being accomplished in and through us. To Him who is able to do exceedingly and abundantly more than we could ever imagine be all glory and honor forever!
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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...