I have just recently reported for training in Virginia, and I soon will be deployed overseas.
Of course I'm a bit scared. I am scared of being maimed or killed, as I am sure all marines have been at one time or another. Combat will certainly provide opportunities for me to be afraid.
But there's something else besides death that I'm afraid of. I'm afraid of failing to live up to the high standards of those currently in the field and those who have gone before me.
General Patton, in his famous Normandy speech, said the following about fear:
Every man is frightened at first in battle. If he says he isn't, he's a _______ liar. Some men are cowards, yes! But they fight just the same, or get the hell shamed out of them watching men who do fight who are just as scared. The real hero is the man who fights even though he is scared. Some get over their fright in a minute under fire, some take an hour. For some it takes days. But the real man never lets fear of death overpower his honor, his sense of duty to this country and his innate manhood.
Ultimately, I have no fear of dying, because I know God cares for me and if I should be killed, He has already made it part of His plan for my life.
Here are some scriptures that have been a blessing to me lately:
from Psalm 46:
God is our refuge and strength,
an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam
and the mountains quake with their surging.
and from Psalm 55:
But I call to God,
and the LORD saves me.
Evening, morning and noon
I cry out in distress,
and he hears my voice.
He ransoms me unharmed
from the battle waged against me,
even though many oppose me.
God will be with me everywhere I go; of that I am sure. And that knowledge is what gives me strength and courage to carry on and to serve well. Knowing that He is an ever-present help in time of trouble makes me secure in any insecure situation.
Lord, Thank You that You will be with me, an Ever-Present Help in time of need. You are Always Faithful to me. Grant me the power and strength to be Always Faithful to You, to my Corps and my country. In Your Son's name, amen.