January 5, 2010

One Year Later

It has been exactly one year since I joined the United States Marine Corps. On this day last year I was in the processing phase of recruit training at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego. I remember the fear of uncertainty as I began that journey. The biggest fear in any new situation seems to be that of uncertainty.

Many of the friends that I went to school with are now being deployed to Afghanistan. People that I work with have left for Afghanistan and more are on their way. I am not wondering if I will go but rather when I will go. I know that the day is coming; if it were today I would gladly accept my orders and begin preparation to go. Yet, that fear of uncertainty would no doubt be there. In friends that I have talked to I have detected a hint of uneasiness as well.

On the flip side, I have talked to a few people who have come back from Iraq. They enjoyed it and have often stated that they wouldn't mind going back. I'm sure there were times when things were tough, but overall the experience was good for them.

Many times in life we let fear hold us back and rob us of experiences that although are tough for awhile, ultimately mold and shape us into better people. We have nothing to fear at all if we know we are in God's will. The uncertainty that we feel is not a feeling that God is familiar with. Though we have no control over what may come our way, we can rest in knowing that there is One who is in control of it all.

Quite frankly the job is a little mundane and the hours are long. But there is a truth that I am experiencing and developing in my life. That of a self sacrificing love for others. As I work with my fellow Marines and those who are above me and I learn of them, grow with them, and labor with them. I on more then one occasion have found myself thinking as I interact with these people, "I would die for them." Not in a way of pride or arrogance and not in the plural sense of the Marine Corps as a whole, but rather the individual Marine. In my young life I have not been in a profession or job where that thought would ever enter one's mind. You don't normally have to think of dieing for your Co-worker selling life insurance. You don't envision an attack at the counter of Geek Squad as you troubleshoot computers. But in this line of work, although minute, the chances of being placed in those situations is real.

I love what I do and I love the people that I work with. I hope that this next coming year will bring new experiences that I can embrace without that fear of uncertainty, but rather a dependence on the One in control of it all. I also hope that the lessons that I am being taught continue and that I recognize God's hand in them all.

To all reading,
Good Day!