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Service Separations

[…]Don’t let them work against you; make them work for you! Marriages can grow even though husband and wife are separated by distance. If nothing else, separations force you to focus on the major good qualities of your mate, rather than his minor idiosyncrasies. When you are with a person all the time, little things like socks on the floor or newspapers scattered all over become progressively irritating. It’s easy to start taking each other for granted. Sometimes a few weeks of separation help to get perspectives back in focus as to what is really important! Once we were visiting […]

The Line Officer and the Chaplain

[…]the members of the congregation need your spiritual vision, commitment, experience, involvement, and prayers. Join them and contribute to the Christian ministry in your command. Together you will mature in Christ (Ephesians 4:16). Chapel congregations contain military people who need to know more of a personal walk with the Lord Jesus. Some have never made a faith commitment to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Others have never clarified and developed their faith so as to grow into mature disciples. In combat many will be open to the chaplains’ ministry who would otherwise be uninterested. In overseas duty stations a […]

The Role of Faith

[…]crisis. In the media coverage during recent missions, there were constant public references to prayer and looking to God for help. Faith gives people the hope and courage they need to get through trials. The realization that you have no control over your circumstances may draw you to God for the first time, or possibly back to God. “The power is in the Person to whom faith clings. . . . The great things that come about through crisis are not the result of ‘great faith’ but of faith, even a small and flickering faith, in the greatness of God’s […]

The Role of the Chaplain

[…]opposition in order to make their lot more livable. Will die with you and will not run away. Will pray for and with you as you lie dying or wounded–willingly go where needed, no matter how dangerous that place may be. Knows the different religious practices and beliefs of the people in your unit Is an enthusiastic contributor to the mission and morale of your organization, but one who will let you know when there are problems with its mission or morale. Those are some of the basic expectations that should be met by your chaplains. If they are not […]

Therefore We Will Not Fear

[…]to find in one of the buildings a room that could be blacked out enough to allow us to light a candle and catch up on our long overdue letters to home. Two of the men were new to combat and they were especially eager to write their reactions to the thick of the fight — their first combat experience. As each of us sat there, busy with thoughts and pens, distant antiaircraft fire was heard. We became alert and listened. The new men looked at me; they had not been in an air attack yet. I answered their questioning […]

Through A Glass Darkly

[…]sneakers and sticky fingers were exchanged for bubble baths and storybooks, we all got together and prayed for us and for Daddy. And then each of the girls would kiss goodnight the picture of their uniformed dad. So many nights I fell exhausted into bed. Sometimes I cried myself to sleep for want of a partner to help me raise these little ones. I refused to entertain the thought of his not coming back. There was always that chance, but I prayed for the strength for each day, and each day brought enough to be concerned about. I did get […]

Fervent Desire for Peace

[…]globe during the Second World War. Its muscular build and vicious blade elicit images of fierce hand-to-hand combat. My father served nearly three decades in the Marine Corps, enlisting in 1946 at the age of seventeen. He stood in awe of the veterans he met who were well acquainted with the kabar. In time he possessed his own, and it accompanied him to subsequent wars. Since his retirement, he gave himself over to more peaceful pursuits. In his seventies today, he still manages a sizeable garden; but when he first retired, he oversaw a veritable farm. He had rakes and […]

Man of the In-Between

[…]the shedding of blood–is necessary to the securing of peace. So it was in entering the Promised Land — and at Christ’s first coming — and so will it be at His second advent. That’s at least part of the reason why (on a lesser plane, of course) we need the military services in our country and a military science department on our campus. Depravity–and the bully syndrome–will be with us until Jesus comes back. Hence the warrior spirit must be righteously nurtured. There is a necessary place for it in a liberal arts program. A thousand years after David […]

Leadership without Coercion

[…]things up necessarily, announced, “The chaplain isn’t here yet, so Colonel, you come on up and pray.” I did. Colonels obey command sergeants major if they are smart. Although we had never discussed it, he knew I would be comfortable praying because of the testimony of my life. In each of my assignments, I followed the same script of identifying myself as a Christian as part of my introduction. I also made it a habit to let my actions demonstrate my faith rather than preach with words. It was no secret that I was involved with OCF and the chapel […]

Three Words

[…]that Jesus is Lord in your life will give you confidence to handle the weight of combat command and the courage to face death. This does not mean that you may not be killed. Jesus was Lord as much in my brother Jon’s life as he was in mine, but God allowed the North Vietnamese machine gun bullets to cut him down after only a few weeks in battle, while I survived fifteen months there with only a few scars. Nor does your faith mean you will never feel fear. It is part of our humanness–often a necessary and helpful […]
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