Chaplain’s thoughts … The desire to serve the Lord


From the very first days of our Air Force careers we’ve heard of the Four Pillars of Comprehensive Fitness. All are essential to our wellbeing and that of the Airmen with whom we serve.

Although most of the pillars, like physical, mental and social fitness are truly obvious, spiritual fitness needs cultivation. However, civil society these days often pays scant attention to the need for spiritual fitness.

Within us is a spiritual irony we need to acknowledge — we frequently pray to know the Lord better, and then we, just as frequently, sabotage our near success. Why would this be?

Well, the reality for us is that, while we deeply yearn for an experience with the Lord, we fear it. We fear to experience the Lord in his fullness means that we have to change. After all, none of us want white hair like Moses when he came down from Mount Sinai. We fear we may have to abandon many of the enjoyable things that fill our time and spend the rest of our lives volunteering.

Truthfully, experiencing the Lord, having a personal epiphany, will indeed change us, but not into someone we never wanted to be. Rather, experiencing the Lord will nudge us into being what He has wanted us to be all along. Therein lies the secret of finding peace in our lives. The Scriptures often encourage us to not be afraid.

Sometimes we claim to be unworthy to experience the Lord, a notion that He rejects. For the Lord truly knows who we are and still loves us. He wants us to experience that love and not fear it.

President Franklin Roosevelt once exhorted the nation, which at the time was down-on-its-heels from the Great Depression with these words, “We have nothing to fear but fear itself.”

If we are content to work hard at overcoming the fear of doing what it takes to be physically, mentally and socially fit. Surely we can work just as hard at surrendering ourselves to the spiritual fitness that comes from experiencing the Lord.