The Wingman

The Wingman

OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM (AFPN) -- Staff Sgt. Justin Sherman looks over star barricades near the flightline at a forward-deployed location. Security forces at this location added more than 3,500 barricades throughout the installation. Sherman is the noncommissioned officer in charge of force protection with the 438th Expeditionary Security Forces Squadron and deployed from the 95th SFS at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Adam Johnston)

“Be devoted to one another…” Romans 12:10

Today as I write this, it is Memorial Day. I want to honor the American Soldiers by telling a powerful lesson that I learned from their devotion to each other.

It was over 100 degrees at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio Texas. My son was one of the several hundred graduating that day after eight grueling weeks of Basic Training. The parents and friends waited for the graduation event. We were on bleachers outside, but protected from the intense Sun. The men and women, called airmen, marched in with great precision, honor and pride worthy of the uniform they wore. It was an awe-inspiring moment. They stood at attention in full uniform in the direct sunlight. Did I mention it was very hot? I was watching my son and in the path of my vision, I saw a young woman wobble a bit then fall flat on her face on the hard asphalt. Every Airman including the one right next to her did not flinch, but remained at attention. A couple of people in the back came and carried her off. Later my son told me that she would be punished for passing out and may be forced to take a couple more weeks of basic training. I was shocked! Why would she be punished for passing out in the heat? My son told me that it was her fault, she either locked her knees or didn’t drink enough fluids. Then I understood. She is somebody’s wingman. Someone depends on her. It is unacceptable for her to pass out because she didn’t take care of herself. When things are tough it is imperative that she is ready.

Jesus said that every one of His followers is part of the body that makes up His Kingdom. It is vital that each of us resolve to be holy and ready. We depend on each other more than we realize. Perhaps I will be your wingman tomorrow and I may need you to be at the top of your game when I am under fire. Be strong in the Lord today! Let’s take care of our own spiritual development out of devotion to each other.