Veterans and Battle Buddies (Navigate Life with a Grateful Heart)


"I thank my God in all my remembrance of you,"
Philippians 1:3 ESV

As I think about navigating through life with a grateful heart, I must consistently praise God for the people He allows me to walk beside. Paul inspires me with his passion for Christ's bride, the church. In much of his writings, he addresses the people he has fellowshipped with, worshipped with, and proclaimed Christ with. As he makes these deliveries, his passion for God's people can be characterized by nothing less than an effervescent joy. Paul demonstrates a love and gratitude for people that I believe God desires His children display. After all, it was God who said of Adam, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make a helper fit for him." Genesis 2:18.

As we recognize Veterans Day this week, there will be appreciation shown to the men and women who have answered the call to serve our nation and make the sacrifices necessary to protect her freedoms. Amongst veterans themselves, there will be countless shout-outs and recognitions of the brothers and sisters that have walked the same path. The Army has termed our brothers and sisters in arms as "battle buddies". A battle buddy is someone who sticks close, serves, cares, aids, shares burden, and protects. While it may not be completely intentional, this is a close parallel to a biblical concept.

God has designed us for companionship, brotherhood, partnership, and friendship. The design is intended to point us closer to Him. Veteran or not, we should all know what it means to have battle buddies. Running from God's design of sharing life with people will not lead us to gratitude or contentment. Most of all, missing the accountability, wisdom, and Christ-like love found in a good companion is detrimental to our lives. We need each other! That's how God designed life.

I thank God for the people he has placed in my life. I am eternally grateful for my wife, kids, parents, siblings, and all of my family. I am so blessed to have wonderful life-long friends and battle buddies. God has introduced me to them from all walks of life---high school, college, seminary, church ministry, Army ministry, and more. God did not intend for me to be alone, but to walk and serve with many beautiful people. The gratitude extends even further when I think about the ways that I am that suitable companion or partner for others. 

If you're reading this, I want you to know that I thank my God in all my remembrance of you. I am grateful for whatever connection we have. I will always work my best to love you, serve you, and point you to Jesus. I ask that you please do the same.

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