Editor's Note: In the May 2006 issue of COMMAND, Army First Lieutenant Carolyn Martin wrote about her experiences as a platoon leader and asked readers to suggest answers to some of the challenges she perceived in her attempt to be a Christian leader. What follows is excellent advice from a former platoon leader and company commander who is now a practicing attorney in Amarillo, Texas.
For LT Carolyn Martin:
Keep doing what you're doing, and also this:
The Word is powerful. Find an enlisted man who's a Christian, from another platoon or company, and talk him into starting a Bible study; make it available to your people, as an opportunity. If one will go, you're on your way. You can ask him/her about it from time to time, and others may join.
Also, these soldiers all have a history, and I'll bet a number of them are from Christian families; they just don't think that faith issues are important now, they have an illusion of immortality, and lots of living to do, and (like we all once were) are children of the world, and in bondage to the flesh.
But other unseen forces are working on them, not least the convicting power of the Holy Spirit, who convicts of sin and righteousness and judgment; many have parents praying for them daily, and many of their parents' Bible study partners are praying for them at least weekly.
You can't tell that when you look at these soldiers, but it's true. So take heart, a vast power is moving unseen before their faces and through their hearts.
Also, try some reading room materials of a different sort, that attack at its source the idea that the Bible is myth. I have in mind materials from ICR, the Institute for Creation Research. These items are fascinating, and are a real wakeup to someone who's just taken evolution for granted, as scientific truth. Their site is www.icr.org. Remember, you're not the one who's deceived and in denial.
Lastly, don't be discouraged. I became a Christian at age thirty-two through an OCF Bible study in Germany; but by then, I had wasted many opportunities for growth and witness. When I was a platoon leader, and later company commander, I probably had believers in my platoon who wished they knew how to approach me.
I'm sure my hardened unbelief was intimidating to them. But God was doing His work. How much better for you to know now what you should be about!