A Word For The Troops (#160)
A Word for the Troops
In the early sections of the Bible is the story of a soldier named David. He had not always been a soldier. When he was kid, and life was a lot less complicated, he was a shepherd who did things like write prayer songs and kill attacking bears and lions with his bare hands. When he was older, and life was lot more complicated, he became a King, and he did things like fight political battles and wrestle with his personal demons and temptations.
But in between being a shepherd and being a king, David was a soldier; and during that time he spent most of his time doing just one thing: Surviving. Enemies were everywhere--and some of those enemies were people who pretended to be David’s friends. Politics and power swirled over David’s head like storm clouds--lighting could strike at any time from the powers-that-be which were above him, or from the ranks of those serving beneath him. If you ever read David’s story (in the Bible, the books are called I Samuel and II Samuel), you will see that David was, much of the time, on the run for his life. He saw human beings at their best and at their worst. He saw violence and bloodshed and he also saw bravery. Most of the time, it was kill or be killed. And in one battle David’s best friend lost his life.
There was no way, ever, that David would live an easy, safe, paint-by-the-numbers life. He understood that, and his battle for survival pushed him to the limits of his sanity. But he did say:
For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation. Psalm 62:1
And then he called God his “refuge”:
On God rests my salvation and my glory; ?my mighty rock, my refuge is God. Psalm 62:7
So as you serve your country in the military whether you are on the front lines or fixing computers, you can bring your personal battle for survival to God like David did and find refuge and strength for your soul.
“The eternal God is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” Deuteronomy. 33:27
God didn't seem to mind that David's life was painfully complex. He watched over David, even though he had to do violent and dangerous work. You can, like David, talk to God, and trust that He will not turn you away during your time of need.
For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,? and his ears are open to their prayer.? But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil." 1 Peter 3:12
And above all remember,
Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9
I sent this leaflet to you to encourage you. We’re proud of you and honored by the sacrifices you make. We pray for you and your family.
Texts used are from the English Standard Version.