St John's Q&A

Monday, November 14, 2005

Heroic trust

What a game the 'Skins and Buccaneers played yesterday, huh? 36-35! Wow, does this one hurt for us "Skins fans. They get me all excited that they are this really good team, and then they lose it. Oh well...they'll probably finish 9-7, possibly 10-6. Oh, by the way, the Tampa Bay winning points yesterday shouldn't have been allowed- the runner was down before he scored. Them the breaks, I guess!
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A good friend of mine is a single, Catholic stud who is in his thirties. He fell in love with a young woman last year, and they have patiently developed their relationship. He is an Intel Officer in the Marine Corps. Just when things were getting very good between him and his girlfriend, he was sent to Iraq. As tough as it was to do, he accepted it in faith, trusting that God willed for him to go and would be with him every step of the way.

My buddy spent seven tough months in Iraq. He wasn't near any fighting, but still had a very difficult time there. Part of it was missing his girlfriend, but the other part was the awful living conditions he encountered. He was extremely happy to come home this Fall. He picked right back up with his girlfriend who missed him more than he thought she would.

Then, the USMC called him to a second tour of duty in Iraq. Another seven months starting early next year. Oof. That's a tough one. His reaction? Well, if this is what God wants, I'll do it. He's not overly psyched about it- who would be? But, he's going back. This is a serious sacrifice. He has waited so long to find the right person (and trusted God's Plan throughout). Now, he's found her. She is great and she loves him. He is a hero anyway, but it's on many levels.

He trusts God on an heroic level. He has for many years now. He has his own idea of what will make him happy, but if it's not God's idea, then he doesn't want it. In other words, he will follow God wherever He leads him, even into places "where you would rather not go" (Jn 21:18). Even to Iraq...even away from the woman he loves. God is his first and truest love. He trusts that God's Plan, even if he doesn't understand it, will ultimately be what's best for him.

I have thought that his time in Iraq will strengthen their relationship. He said that was true for the first tour, and is hopeful that it will be the case for the second tour. Years down the road, hopefully they will be married, and will look back on this time and think that it was the best thing for them. It was hard but good (usually things that are good are hard). For now, my buddy has that hope, and his heroic trust in Christ will be tested every day that he is defending our country in a place he'd rather not go.

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