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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Volunteer (11/23/06)

TITLE: I'll Go
By Lucy Cain
11/27/06


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Isaiah 6:8
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, "Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?" And I said, "Here am I. Send me!"


Let your mind wander back for a moment to the year 2001. The month is September. It’s the 11th day at 9:30 a.m. I don’t need to say anymore, do I?

There are very few people in this world that don’t have that exact moment etched in their thinking forever. The country changed at precisely that hour.

Do you remember what you were doing? I do. My husband and I were just finishing our morning coffee and watching a little television before getting into the day’s scheduled events. Shock and confusion dumbfounded both of us as we sat staring in disbelief at what unfolded for the next several….weeks.

As a result of that horrifying event, my son has volunteered to serve both God and country. 9-11 effected many lives other than those who were directly involved. We have young men/women overseas fighting terrorism. All volunteered to go. Not one of them had to sign up. Not one.

Many are returning home battered and broken, if not physically, then emotionally.
They chose to serve, and many would go back if allowed.

In my son’s case, God asked him to serve. Michael said God would not let him rest until he said “Yes, I’ll go.” He came to us at midnight one night and said he had to go. Go he did, just two weeks later.

As a result, my Christian author/military mother’s heart knew I had to write about this. “Secure the Fort” is in progress and rapidly coming together! This is more than a devotional for military families. It also has snippets of historical facts, famous quotes, interesting tid bits about each of our military branches, and testimonies from various military families.

When we were at Michael’s basic graduation ceremony, the commander said something over the loud speaker that made a complete hush take over the crowd. “Ladies and gentlemen, if you will take a moment to absorb the large group of soldiers in the field before you, I want you to pray for them. You see, these fine men and women voluntarily joined the Army during war time. The majority of those you see will be shipping out to fight this war on terror immediately following this ceremony.”

Sitting in front of me was a Marine soldier in full dress uniform. He had to be around 20 years old, and was wearing a purple heart medal on his chest. He sat beside his mother. They were there to see his younger brother graduate from Army basic training. Mom was decked out in red/white/blue, in full support of her son (s).

The events of 9-11 began a war like none we’ve ever witnessed before. This is an entirely new type of war that our young men/women in the field are learning to fight as they go. They don’t know who to “target” as the enemy. It could be the person standing next to them, or the woman crossing the street. It’s a very stressful war for these who graciously volunteered their energy, skills and time.

How often do we volunteer to put ourselves in harm’s way for someone else? The next time you see a Soldier, thank him or her. You don’t know how much that will mean to them! They’re not serving for the pay, trust me. They’re serving because they want to.

There is another group of men/women (and children) who are serving voluntarily on a different kind of battlefield. Our foreign missionaries willingly go to difficult and dangerous areas. Many cannot even tell where they are stationed due to safety precautions. Many have to take on “cover” assignments/jobs to hide the fact they are doing mission work.

Entire families go overseas and live for several years in a foreign land, having to learn another language, find new friends they can rely on, adjust to new schools and environments.

Our foreign missionaries are also trained prior to “deployment.” They are in a spiritual war zone. One that can be very hard to fight. Mental exhaustion plays a heavy role in many early returns from the field.

When God calls you, are you ready to follow? Are you ready to volunteer for His service?

Pray for our troops, and pray for our spiritual warriors overseas. Their families will thank you.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Edy T Johnson 11/30/06
Scanning the list of titles, yours is the first to jump out at me. You have some powerful writing, here. I was not disappointed as I read to the end. You touched my heart.

My only suggestion: your opening is a bit "slow." You might lose readers unless you grab them with a punchy first sentence/paragraph (you can always work the "slow" info into the body of your writing later, after you have their attention).
terri tiffany12/01/06
I too picked this one first as I was scrolling down. Good title. Very strong - powerful message here! I loved it:) It is a reminder we all need. My only thought was the part about you writing the book seemed to not really go with the flow- (though I am happy you are writing it)but for this essay it stops the message somewhat. Again - thanks for the reminder of what are soldiers do for us! ...another thought - you could almost end it with the soldiers part and the missionaries another whole story. Thnaks!
Sara Harricharan 12/05/06
Great job. The title caught my eye, and the story itself was deep.