Ah, the nature of war and communication. I apologize for the non-existent posts the past few weeks but the ability to type up anything, let alone upload it to the internet has been a trial in itself. So here is, in post form, my excuse of why I’ve been so “lazy” the last few weeks. I returned to my battalion 3 weeks ago this past Thursday and was immediately hit by two very big revelations. One I was tracking, the other I was not. I knew that I was receiving Catholic support for my Marines the next week in the form of a Catholic Chaplain. The problem is the services are very short on Catholic chaplains and roughly ¼ of all servicemen claim Catholicism as their expression of the Christian Faith. So to solve the issue once every 6 to 8 weeks I have a Catholic Chaplain fly into my AO (Area of Operations) and we travel around providing Mass and Protestant services to as many men as we can get too. It was an awesome week. I accused my Catholic counterpart of being Baptist and He accused me of not being Baptist enough. Most people hear the term Baptist and think 1950’s hellfire and brimstone preaching. Now sure I throw out the gauntlet from time to time but I rarely tend to get red in the face when I preach. All said and done the week was an awesome experience and I look forward to our next week traveling together.
The other revelation was one that I had been warned of in the back of my mind but was not prepared to spin so quickly on. I was moving – from one location to another. Now to be clear I move all the time, but I do operate out of a Chapel and am there on weekends. A chapel that has been in the same location for the past 2 years. Sure it’s a tent but you’d be surprised how permanent you can make a tent. So I’m told on Friday that I need to have my chapel packed into a box and ready to move in roughly 5 days.
I threw my assistant to the wolves and made him do it while I enjoyed traveling around being lazy and generally hanging out with my Marines. Hey it’s my job! So fast forward a week and here I sit in a small tent that is serving as my temporary tabernacle waiting for my Cathedral to show up so I can move back into my home away from home. I get to spend the next few days with a fellow chaplain who I went to school with so it’s not all bad.
I’ll leave you with this small epiphany – You know the saying War is Hell?
I’ve discovered what hell is – it is boredom.
I don’t dodge bullets I dodge long moments of waiting filled with surges of excitement as God reveals Himself through teaching and one-on-one encounters as I bring light and salt to a dark and dull world.
May He be exalted.