Discount for USFRA members!! 50% off of registration for our event. Go to the registration link and type in coupon code USFRA you will receive registration for $25. Link to the registration site and the hotel special for them to attend along with a brief description of the Expo for them to review.
I recently had the displeasure of being in a bad fire. While I understand that all structure fires are bad, those of you in the fire service know what I mean when I say bad fire. I must admit, it was the first time in 17 years that I was scared BEFORE I went in. That was an interesting feeling. I was terrified of going into this fire and when we breached the front door we were met with a wall of fire. It was an intense battle to say the least that ended up putting me in the back of the ambulance and out of service for 2 days.
My helmet melted and cracked, so I had to say goodbye to my old friend. It has officially been taken out of service and is now on a plaque.
This fire really rattled me from beginning to the end. I have no idea why. About 3 weeks after the fire, I realized just how bad I was rattled. It was like a light finally went off in my head.
Here I am, pastor, counselor and chaplain, shaken to the core, trying my best to tough it out and do my job. What a hypocrite I am. I have preached on the peace that the Bible speaks about so many times it is ridiculous, but I found myself without it. I found myself reliving not having water for 7 minutes in the center of the house. I found myself reliving sucking one of my (several) tanks that night completely dry, something I haven't done since the mid-nineties. I found myself replaying all the events that led up to me in the back of an ambulance. I found all of it, but peace was nowhere to be found.
But He promised me peace. Peace that could not be taken away from me. Peace that would surpass all understanding. Where was it?
It was there, at the foot of the cross, the whole time. There it was, just waiting on me. It was the one place that I didn't look for it.
In the emergency services, we tend to be a self reliant bunch that is used to having to figure these things out for ourselves and all too often forget to seriously seek God's help in dealing with the job. I did, and I am the chaplain for Pete's sake. AAUUGGHHH!
In the Christmas season, we all too often use peace as we do any other holiday word; without any thought to the actual meaning of it. The bible says that "the chastisement of our peace was upon him". That's right... those things he endured at Calvary was for our peace. He paid too high of a price for it for us to neglect it.
Do you have peace? If not, you will find it in the same exact place that I found mine. A place that I am ashamed to admit that I neglected to look.
Here's to wishing all of my fellow Fire/Police/EMS/Soldiers and Civilian Support a truly peaceful and wonderful Christmas Season!