Guards stopped us at the entrance to Forward Operating Base (FOB) Ho Chunk and checked our IDs before allowing my Command Sergeant Major (CSM) and me to walk unarmed into the camp where several units were assigned. As we inspected the premises we saw unmade beds and gear strewn haphazardly inside tents. Soldiers walked by us out of uniform. At one point I ducked inside a tent and noticed several unsecured weapons. I grabbed an M16 and slung it on my shoulder. As we continued observing, warning sirens sounded and a quick response force rushed by us to meet a notional threat. I wondered what soldier was running around trying to find what happened to his M16! The captain in charge of the FOB (known as the mayor) approached us and spoke to us for several minutes. Amazingly he completely missed the fact that I was carrying a rifle—not something generals do.
As we departed Ho Chunk, the guards failed to notice I was armed. Before we drove off, Harry opened up the snatched weapon. It was filthy and rusted in several places. This M16 had not been cleaned in a long time. Steam ascended from Harry’s head and his eyes bore the glare of disgust. He strode back inside the FOB and notified the nearest leader that they had a missing weapon and that he expected the entire chain of command to report to his office the next morning. It would be a long night for several embarrassed leaders participating in our training exercise.
A soldier failed to clean his weapon and left it unsecured. But it was first line leaders who failed to inspect and instill discipline. Irresponsible units die before a determined enemy. It is our job and duty to make sure that never happens.
2 Thessalonians 3:11—For we hear that there are some among you who walk irresponsibly, not working at all, but interfering with the work of others.
Irresponsibility is always linked to a lack of discipline. Fat feasts on excessive food without exercise. Fatigue impairs those who stay up too late. Immaturity reigns in uncontrolled emotions. If a person is backsliding spiritually you can be sure he or she: is unwilling to spend regular time digesting God’s Word; fails to converse with God; disregards the need to fellowship; and, forgoes any habit that would strengthen faith. Slackers don’t just hurt themselves, they discourage those around them.
How responsible are you? If your life is a mess, something is amiss. It is those who are strong in discipline and who master the basics that win on the battlefield. If negligence and apathy characterize those around you what are youdoing to make a difference? Sometimes we have to grab a weapon to make a soldier. Neglect only feeds irresponsibility so get engaged and make a difference! Paul did not ignore the report of irresponsible Thessalonians, he commanded them to get back to work if they expected to eat.
Discipline is not welcomed by carnality, and yet it is God’s most valued instrument in perfecting human character.—J. Oswald Sanders in The Pursuit of the Holy
©2012 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)