I Wish the Ring Had Never Come to Me…

My dad went to Vietnam in 1965because he felt like it was the right thing to do, and he’d rather volunteer than be drafted.

He spent 13 months in Vietnam, serving as a military police officer, a helicopter machine gunner, and security for convoy runs in Korea.  He fought in the jungles, in the sky, and on the streets of Saigon.

Much of what my father experienced in Vietnam he wishes he’d never experienced. Like Frodo in “The Fellowship of the Ring” he wishes that the “ring had never come.” But, it did. And he has lived with that reality every day since. 

Now, though, my dad is excited. Through attending a “Bridges to Healing Conference” sponsored by Military Ministry, a division of Campus Crusade for Christ, (www.militaryministry.org) he sees that God had a plan for the suffering he’s experienced.  As a combat vet diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, he is in a unique position to reach out to other combat vets who are also struggling.  So, that is what he is doing. It is exciting to see.

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The Latest…

Much has happened recently!  On May 4th, my grandfather, John Svoboda, graduated to Heaven.  We had the privilege of going to the funeral to say goodbye.  It was a tearful experience, and I miss Grandpa very much.  But, we are thankful our grief is not without hope.  I look forward to seeing my grandfather again.

 Since I wrote last:

  • we’ve hosted a Jump Start mentor training at a local church, with 14 people in attendance.  Of those, 13 are very interested in partnering with us to mentor others! 

  • we’re exploring the possibility of partnering with Union Gospel Mission in their Aftercare program. Please pray for the Lord to work out details if this is His plan.

  • Spokane desperately needs focused prayer.  God has called Jason and Diana Roether to start a house of prayer here in Spokane, which is very exciting!!  If you are interested in more information, please visit http://www.ihop.org/.

  • Chris went to Tacoma for the Military Ministry “Bridges to Healing” conference in early June.  The Bridges to Healing conference is designed to help churches reach out to combat veterans struggling with PTSD, a growing and pervasive issue that been unaddressed by the Church for far too long. If you are curious and want more information, please visit http://www.militaryministry.org/2010/05/18/free-tacoma-bth-seminar/.

  • I’m also really excited to have my mom and dad volunteering with Military Ministry here in Spokane. My family has survived the effects of Dad’s PTSD for years. Mom and Dad are passionate about sharing God’s hope and healing to men and women also struggling with the effects of PTSD.

  • setting up two service projects; helping with a Habitat for Humanity house in June, and doing some work on the home of an older single lady in July.

  • A young woman who was pursuing divorce has decided not to because of her exposure to the Faith Principle.  Please continue to pray for her as she learns to live as though God’s Word is true, regardless of circumstances, emotions, or cultural trends.

I’m in awe and filled with joy as I think of the opportunity God has given us to be His vessels of hope to a hopeless and dying world.  We, who were uncircumsized Gentiles, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel, without hope and without God, we have been brought near by the blood of Jesus Christ.  Now, we are citizens of Heaven, members of the very household of God (Eph 2:11, 19).  Through us, God spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of Himself everywhere (2 Cor 2:14)!  Wow.  Isn’t that amazing?