I love movies. I love the narrative that takes me to a place I've never explored. Perhaps that is why Forrest Gump makes my top ten list of favorites.
A person the world looked upon as a simpleton, played an important part in many of the iconic events in history. Remember when he was running and wiped the mud off his face with a t-shirt and came up with the "smiley face?" Have a nice day indeedee!
And while the world may not view any one of us as simpleton's, we ARE playing a historic part in His-story. We are the men and women of faith who are serving, giving, and praying to change lives for eternity. We are the soldiers in the battlefield fighting for the souls of men, women and children who need to know REAL everlasting freedom.
Not one champion of faith every lived without asking the big WHY question of God, about something. Whether it was a personal experience or injustice, or just a plain, "I don't get THIS?" moment of bewilderment. It comes to our humanity naturally. The enemy introduced and seduced with a question, "Did God really tell you that?"
In the movie, Forrest saves his lieutenant from death. He carries him out of the battlefield (along with many others wounded). The officer is convinced this was a mistake, he was supposed to die and not be left a double amputee.
Later on, we see another encounter between the two men. An embittered and drunk Loo-ten-ant Dan, meets the ever positive Forrest. He asks Forrest about his faith, unsure and angry about how God could let this happen.
And then one of my many favorite scenes occurs when Loo-ten-ant Dan comes to be Forrest's First Mate on his shrimp boat. Dan hoists himself up the mast and in an angry display rides out the hurricane, shouting up at the heavens, "Is this all you got?"
In the voice over narrative Forrest says, "And God showed up."
Lieutenant Dan was not anticipating the best from God. In fact, in his post-war experience, he felt as if he had received God's worst.
Many of the soldiers and their families arriving Thursday may be having some of those very same sentiments. At the first Wounded Warrior event in 2008, I will never forget what Chaplain Tony said to the volunteers. "The worst thing that can happen to these families is NOT that their loved one will be killed in action, but that they will be injured. These families are living their worst nightmare."
WE (the volunteers, the staff, and YOU the ammunition suppliers) are coming alongside these soldiers and their families for a few days of their long journey toward recovery. Our prayer is to strengthen the faith of those who believe, and to introduce to faith those who are screaming up at the skies in hurt, anger and pain.
God's Word says, He will show up.
"This is God's war, not yours... watch God's saving work for you to take shape. Don't be afraid, don't waver. March out boldly tomorrow - God is with you." 2 Chronicles 20:17 The Message
With the Saints marching on
With a smile too,
Pray for the families who are preparing for the weekend respite
Pray for the children to have fun and opportunities to reconnect
Pray for the staff of Joni and Friends San Antonio who are coming against a mountain of details, changes, and additional unanticipated costs
Pray for the staff of Tapatio Springs. Ownership has changed hands (again) which presents new challenges with people unfamiliar with the work of the Wounded Warrior Getaway
Pray for George Strait (yes, THE George Strait country superstar) who is one of the new owners of Tapatio Springs. Pray his staff alerts him to the project and he catches the vision - providing a place for the soldiers and their families AT NO COST to the ministry (the soldiers always come free of charge)
Pray for the volunteers who will be challenged with many injured men and women. Pray they see with the eyes of the Father, the hearts that need love and healing.
Pray for opportunities to show the love of our King in extraordinary ways
Pray for the speakers Clebe and Deanna McClary to be a "balm from Gilead"
Pray, and then pray!
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