From the Foxhole to the Pulpit: The Soldier's Creed

From the Foxhole to the Pulpit
Thus far, in this blog, I have written about my Oath of Enlistment into the U.S. Army; the army slogan, Be All That You Can Be; and the common phrased used in the Army, Hurry Up and Wait. One of my goals for this particular blog is to write about my military experience and show the challenges and connections that exist between my time spent in the foxhole and the calling of God on my life to now serve in the pulpit. Let me state this another way. Jesus is the sovereign Lord and He prepared me for the pulpit, by allowing me to spend time in the foxhole. Today, I want to take a brief look the creed the American soldier that all soldiers are asked to know and apply to their lives.    

The Soldier’s Creed of the United States Army
The Soldier’s Creed of the United States Army begins and concludes with the memorable phrase, “I am an American Soldier.” It is considered to be more than just a statement, it is a commitment to the core values instilled in those who are called upon to serve this great nation. Basil Manly, Jr. wrote in the hymn, Soldiers of Christ, in Truth Arrayed:
                        Soldiers of Christ, in truth arrayed,
                        A world in ruins needs your aid:
                        A world by sin destroyed and dead;
                        A world for which the Savior bled.

Being a soldier in the U.S. Army is considered by many to be a high calling. I believe that the calling of Christ to serve in the Lord’s Army is much higher and to be called to serve as one of His under-shepherds reaches to the highest of heights.
                        His gospel to the lost proclaim,
                        Good news for all in Jesus’ name;
                        Let light upon the darkness break
                        That sinners from their death may wake.

The changes that occurs when one moves from the foxhole to the pulpit are numerous and at times difficult (Challenges). However, God uses the experiences in our lives for His glory and for our good (Connections). God’s plan is eternal and the outcome is eternal as well.
                        We meet to part, but part to meet
                        When earthly labors are complete,
                        To join in yet more blest employ,
                        In an eternal world of joy.

Having the honor to serve in the U.S. Army for a time, has help me to see His preparation in my life to continue in my service as a member of the Lord's Army. This includes the challenges of leadership, in personal communications with others, in handling the stress that often comes with the pastorate, the decision making process, and even in providing some personal examples to use as illustrations in sermons. Knowing and living out the Soldiers Creed of the United States Army did have a tremendous impact in my life; however, a greater impact has been and continues to be found in the proclamation; I am a soldier in the Lord’s Army!

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