I had a business trip to DC this week and due to airline "equipment" issues, that's how the airlines refer to the airplane, as the equipment, I arrived in DC 3 hours late and missed the meeting on Tuesday. So after checking into my hotel I decided to go to another meeting I had, one I had tried to keep on several other trips to DC but could never fit into my schedule. I went to Section 60, site 8525 of Arlington Cemetery to introduce myself to Troy.
I tried one other time to go to Arlington but arrived as it was closing. I had thought about this day many times, what do you say? What can you say? I feel a connection to Troy as a fellow fighter pilot, we shared a common love of flying. It is a unique and strong bond the love of flying, and the thrill and blessing to have a dream come true and fly a fighter. To kneel at Troy's grave and know we have never met yet we share life's most personal moments. We never met yet we share the love of Ginger. We have never met yet I watch Boston play on his first club soccer team, feel the touch of Greyson as he seeks stability in his life, drive Bella to her first day of school, and hear the twins call me daddy. I needed to "meet" Troy; I need to talk to him and tell him the kids are doing good, that Ginger misses him. To promise to love and care for his family, to stand in the gap for him. It was a situation you can not prepare for and I'm not sure how to express the feelings in that moment.
Ginger had a similar experience. When I took her to Ft Sam National Cemetery, section 110 site 699, where she knelt and met Andrea for the first time. It was a very emotional moment as I left her alone and watched from the car as they "met."
Ginger's Mom read this to me yesterday morning, it is a quote from a book called "Steams in the Desert." When you find yourself in times of difficulty, especially extreme times this should be one of the first books you reach for after your Bible. This excerpt reminds me that God is sovereign, and He alone holds the eternal view of His creation, the work of His will and His desire...our lives.
And leave behind the dull routine of home,
Thinking in other fields to serve my God;
But Jesus said, "My time as not yet come."
I long to sow the seed in other soil,
To be unshackled in the work, and free,
To join other laborers in their toil,
But Jesus said, "It is not my choice for thee."
To work where souls were sunk in sin and shame,
That I might win them; but the Master said,
"I have not called you, publish here My name."
I longed to fight the battles of my King,
Lift high His standards in the thickest strife;
But my great Captain had me wait and sing
Songs of His conquest in my quite life.
Where all alone I seemed to stand and wait,
To feel I had some human helper near,
But Jesus had me guard the lonely gate.
Where no one seemed to understand me care;
But Jesus said, "I choose you for this soil,
That you might raise for me some blossoms rare."
And now I have no longing but to do
At home, or far away, His blessed will,
To work amid the many or the few;
Thus, "choosing not to choose," my heart is still.