Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Cathy’s Corner


Our lesson today is God is with me when I am afraid and God helped Moses. We learn how God provided for Moses though Aaron and how God was with Moses even though he was afraid. There are many times in our lives that we are in fear and we trust God for protection and provision and to calm those fears. The summer of 2007 our son, J was in Iraq for his second tour of duty. While we think it is hot here, it is usually eight to ten degrees hotter there, and it was no different three years ago. I checked and they are looking at anywhere from 116 to 118 every day this week. In August of 2007 we received a phone call from J; he began telling us one of their men had been killed by an IED two days before. Then he began to tell us about where they were and what had been going on that week. Here is an excerpt from the notes I took from that phone call.

“We are living in a safe house and building the base around it. It has a wall of Bradley’s and trucks around it and on one side is a canal. Yesterday around 11am me and five guys were clearing some reed out of the canal by burning them with jet fuel, which is pretty powerful stuff. The canal has about a 10ft drop from where the water stops, it’s deep and steep. You can’t just walk out of it, you have to climb and crawl. The other guys were on top of the canal. Sgt Robinson was hanging on to me and I had the can of fuel and was flinging it everywhere and we had made a trail with it. Something sparked and all of a sudden you could hear this “whoosh” and the whole canal was on fire. It was a wall of fire. I started crawling to get out and the fire was just chasing me and it caught up with me. I got to the top and ran out and the guys were yelling at me to stop and drop. I was engulfed in flames. They said it was like this wall of fire and all of a sudden I came shooting out. I rolled around and put myself out. I had to throw my Kevlar off because it was on fire. I heard Sgt Robinson yelling and he was running and his legs were on fire. I jumped on him and tried to put the fire out and it wouldn’t stop. I took my shirt off and started trying to smother it and that didn’t work. Then Vega came and helped me throw dirt on him and we got it put out. I heard Scremo yelling “Jones, Jones!” I found him in the back of the truck just frozen with his legs and arms burned. I got in the truck and tore off to the house so the docs could get to him. They air lifted me, Robinson and Scremo to the ER in Baghdad. I burned my hands, oh by the way; I’m in the hospital in Baghdad. When jet fuel flares up it’s a bomb fire. Everyone said I just shot out of the flaming canal. No one knows why it went up either. They said that it just went up and everything was on fire. They knew I was down in it but they couldn’t even see me when it went up and they couldn’t believe it when I came out. No one can believe I wasn’t burned anymore than I was. You know I was holding the can, I was in the canal and I was the one engulfed in flames but I have the least amount of burns.” “You know why? Don’t you?” I asked. “Yes I know why.” J answered.  “There are all of these people praying for you over here and God is watching over you and protecting you.” I said. “I know.” J said. “You know how they cut your pants off when you are at the hospital? Well they started cutting mine and they just fell apart because they were so roasted and scorched. One second I was chunking gas and the next second there were flames everywhere.” He said. “That’s just insane.” I said. He said. “NO! What’s insane are the three holes left from those IEDs. They were huge” I just kept saying thank you God the rest of the conversation and Gary and J would say, “Yep.” 

I can’t even imagine how scared my son was nor if he even had time to be scared. I was scared for him listening to him tell us all that happened. We were so grateful to God for J’s protection. There is a song called Through the Fire and one line says, “If I trust the hand of God, I know He’ll shield the flames again and again.” Just as Moses trusted God and God provided for him, J trusted God and God shielded the flames, and we trusted God to help J and to protect him and God did.


Say a prayer today for all our military men and women and their families, after all, freedom isn’t really free.

Have a great day in the Lord


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