Monday Musings for 3.2.20

 

Dear Friends,

If you turn off the news and talk to your neighbors, you’ll find that our country is far more harmonious than you’re being told.   

Rob Schneider

We’ve heard from Ginny Eggleston!  She has just completed two weeks of training in California and will soon be deployed to Kuwait.  She referred to the above quote in her e-mail.  Here is what she said about it:

 I happened to read it while lying in my bunk, in the dark, surrounded by 50 or so exhausted female Soldiers. The quote struck me immediately. After a lot of tough training that has been taxing both physically and mentally, the truth of the quote has never been so obvious. 

I have been working the last two weeks with a team of around 200 people. One of these people I have worked with before, and two others I have met once before. The rest? Never have met or even spoken to in my life – until I had to climb on a bus with all of them on February 16 and travel three hours to a small, austere Army post in an isolated area of Northern California.

We immediately began sharing living quarters, showers, bathrooms, laundry machines, and other limited resources.

Then we all proceeded to work 14 or so hour days either shooting live 5.56 mm, 7.62 mm, or 12.7 mm (50 caliber) weapons – or facilitating someone else firing those weapons.

After a full week of that, we all proceeded to work 14 or so hour days training to do jobs and fill leadership positions none of us have done as part time Soldiers – even the ones who have deployed several times before now.

Is there tension? Yes. Heated discussions? Misunderstandings? Personality conflicts? Yes, yes, and yes.

However, I can say with total confidence that these conflicts are 99% related to our mission and how we, as a team, accomplish our mission. Race, gender, religion, age, etc. etc. has not been an active factor in any conflict I have witnessed, or participated in. If an individual amongst us is harboring “hate” due to various group identity differences – that individual (or individuals) is doing the right thing and keeping that crap to him or herself. 

We have people from the east coast, the west coast, “fly over” country, the south, the Midwest – what have you. We have lots of people who grew up in countries outside of the US – from Polynesia, Jamaica, Africa, Puerto Rico, Latin America – and many more. 

Despite all this, we are a team. Harmonious? Not entirely – but at the end of the day, we are in this together and no one will leave anyone behind.

We are very proud of Ginny and deeply moved by her service to our country at great personal sacrifice.  She will be away for a year.  Her three children, Mina, Lily, and Robert are living with their father during this time.  If you would like to send a personal greeting to any of them, just ask us for their contact information.

In this season of Lent, I hope we are all spending extra time in prayer.  Please add to your prayer list Ginny and her children.

In Christ,

 

John