I am still responding, emotionally, from preaching two nights ago at the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s “The Cove” retreat center, near Black Mountain, NC, where I addressed a full house of chaplains and their wives. Many of these chaplains, representing all of our armed services, will deploy to Afghanistan and other places around the world, in harm’s way, in a matter of days. Others will serve our troops and families stateside in chapels, as family life chaplains, and in so many other courageous and front-line Gospel ways. But as I spoke on John 21 and “Renewing Your Commitment to Christ’s Call on Your Life” I felt the power of the moment, the pressing reality of history in the making (if you have ever seen A Man Called Peter, and remember that moment when the actor Richard Todd so remarkably recaptured that moment when the famous chaplain of the Senate sensed the movement of the Lord to tear up his previously prepared manuscript and speak on the brevity of life and then, afterwards, learned, on that date of December 7th, 1941, that we were at war). And I believe that the Spirit of God moved powerfully from His Word to our hearts. And as usual, I came to seek to give blessing, but received so much more in return. These, chaplains and spouses, and their children, are my heros. There were many tears as when I was introduced, and the song, “Pastor’s Wife,” was played over the system, from the CD, “Follow Your Call,” a title that seemed so appropriate for this gathering.
May God bless our chaplains and their families, who sacrifice so much for our freedom. And may God give unction and power to the many faithful chaplains who will minister in the caves outside of Kandahar, or with sailors on aircraft carriers in the Gulf, or to families at Air Force chapels in distant lands. Oh may God bless them to His glory, their good, and for revival in our land, and in the Middle East.