I was in awe as we pulled into the Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) in San Diego, California last week to watch my son, Cameron, graduate from Marine Boot Camp. The size and scope of the base was unbelievable – it was a city within a city – as nearly 5000 recruits along with drill instructors, officers, and their families all called MCRD home. We weren’t going to be able to see Cameron for another day, so we drove around the base looking at the sights and sounds he must have experienced on a daily basis for the last 13 weeks. We saw platoons marching, training, practicing, and of course, getting yelled at by the infamous Marine Corps Drill Instructors.
These drill instructors yelled, screamed, spit, and cursed out orders and instructions in a way most recruits could never have imagined. My son told us that nothing, not a movie, not a YouTube video, not the words of a former marine, could prepare him for this experience. But every single thing that was said and done had a purpose and a mission – to turn bright eyed boys into Marines. It’s hard to imagine, but the drill instructors really do care about each and every one of the recruits in their platoon. They knew that these future Marines may someday experience some of the toughest conditions known to man – war. And that they needed to be able to follow instructions to save lives – theirs and those around them. The communication techniques, as intense and fierce as they were, work well in turning recruits into Marines.
This type of communication doesn’t work well in most places. Actually, I think the only place it does work is in the military. Most of us are not soldiers or drill instructors barking our orders to each other. Our communication should be gentle, tender and kind. We are in relationships with our spouse, children, friends and co-workers. And these relationships should be a healthy, safe, two-way communications in order to grow and thrive. We should also be having a daily two-way communication with God. He communicates to us through His word, the bible, and we communicate to him through prayer. Are you in the habit of reading your bible and praying on a regular basis? If not, why not? What’s holding you back? He’s not a drill instructor screaming and yelling at us, he’s the creator of the universe that wants to be in a loving relationship with us each and every day. Our lives will be transformed, similar to that of a soldier, only we will be in God’s Army.
1 Thessalonians 5:17 ~ Pray without ceasing.
Matthew 7:7-8 ~ Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
Joshua 1:8 ~ Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do.
“Dear Lord and Heavenly Father, help us be committed to communicating with you each and every day. Forgive us for not setting aside time to do so. Help us eliminate the distractions of our lives so we can focus on you. It’s in Jesus name I pray, Amen.”