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Reckoning with March 31, 2004

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  • Reckoning with March 31, 2004

    Reckoning with March 31, 2004
    One day on my journey for spiritual growth, I felt the need to inform my pastor that I felt that I was ready to teach in Sunday school. The idea of doing lesson plans for an adult class and discussing God's word was just tantalizing to my mind.

    The next week my Sunday school superintendent informed me that teaching God's word was a wonderful thing and I would start with the primary class ages 6-8.

    Not really being a person to deal with children other than my own. It wasn't exactly what I had envisioned.

    I love to study the bible from prophetic, archeological and historical viewpoints, how could I break this all down to children, and it remain interesting.

    Walking into my class the next Sunday morning I faced seven 6 year olds, four 7 year olds and two 8 year olds.
    13 little students, the number 13 never phased me, don't believe in such.

    These were the precious children I saw weekly at church services.
    Little Tabitha, named appropriately.
    Buddy, Bubba and Shanita, the crying ones, "Sis. Faye I can't do review with all those people looking at me".
    Lintra, the class comedian, there is always one.
    My fly, had it going on "why" girls Selene, Brandy, Jennifer, Ashley, and Megan, their constant why? Why? Whys? Kept me studying for their anticipated questions.

    Quiet and mysterious Miss Tonya, my Raquel,Sam and Cornelius and the studious, analytical and polite Mr. Curtis.

    I grew to love these children, they were my first, and I will never forget them.

    Through the years I did advanced to teaching adult classes, and most of them advanced slightly behind me, the young men going to the men's classes and so on but there was a trend, a disturbing trend that had started to unfold, that rent my heart to see.

    My babies, (they never progressed further in my mind than that) my babies, were enlisting in Armed Forces and being deployed off to war.
    The anguish that I felt, I know was surpassed only by their own parents.

    Mr. Curtis, the first okay, I could see him going there, Army bound, becoming an officer and all. This decision I knew he would have thought out very carefully and prayerfully.
    Curtis is the oldest recruit, being in 9 years. He has gone to Iraq twice. Right now he is in Ft Lewis, WA, training to go back to Iraq or Africa next year. This will be his 3rd term in battle.

    My mysteriously, quiet Miss Tonya, in the Army? I was sure she would surprise me one day, she sure did, Tonya is in New York waiting to go to Iraq. This is her 3rd term in battle. She went to Pakistan, Afghanistan, where she drove tanks and now Iraq.

    But my class comedian, in the Marines? Lintra ?
    The letters read to us on Sundays by his mother, him pleading to the church for prayers while in boot-camp,. Was not surprising to me .I of course was dying inside, what if he smarts off at the wrong person?
    But his letters started changing, sounding more upbeat and mature, I'm going to make it, but keep praying for me.

    Crying little Buddy, oh excuse me it's Jamar now. Joined the Army, Lord, where did he find the courage? He is in one of the northern states.

    But nothing could have prepared me for the enlistment of my flyest, whyest girl of all, Brandy, who reminded me of me, in the Air Force? Surely that uniform would be much too bland and the structured lifestyle, too much of a grip. Brandy is in Louisiana.

    Over ten percent of my class, they were gone, to strange lands, ones I once taught them about.
    Why? I wondered why? Until I got this.

    The Airman's Creed

    I am an American Airman,
    I am a Warrior
    I have answered my nation's call
    I am an American Airman,
    My mission is Fly, Fight, and Win
    I am faithful to a proud heritage
    A Tradition of Honor
    I am an American Airman,
    Guardian of Freedom and Justice,
    My Nation's Sword and Shield
    It's Sentry and Avenger
    I defend my Country with my Life
    I am an American Airman
    Wingman, Leader, Warrior
    I will never leave an Airman behind
    I will never falter
    And I will not fail

    Since she sent me this I reckon no more with March 31, 2004, I just send up prayers that God puts a hedge of protection around these babies that are babies no more.
    It takes love to embrace those ones who are weak, and strength to endure the weakness, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me