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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

"On Alert!"

During the summer following my senior graduation, my parents and I took a trip to Michigan to visit my sister and her family.  Sue’s husband was a Captain in the US Air Force and they lived on base at Wurtsmith Air Force Base located in northeastern Michigan, a couple of miles west of Lake Huron.  The base was closed in 1993, but back in the Cold War days of 1971 it was a major instillation and home of the 94th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, Strategic Air Command bomber units and aerial refueling air groups with the mission of strategic deterrence in the event of enemy attacks over that region of the USA.
If I remember correctly, we drove through the central states on the way to Michigan and then returned via the northern route enjoying the outrageous scenery of such states as North Dakota and Montana.  Once we arrived at our destination, we spent the first few days with them on base and then moved into a cabin they had rented for us on a nearby lake.
Living on base was almost like being in a different world for me!  There was the constant roar of the fighter’s afterburners as they flew over the neighborhood during their take offs, the seas of blue uniformed Air Force personnel everywhere you went, the incredible jets, huge B52 bombers and the KC 135 tankers maneuvering around and parked on the nearby runways and the special comradery that everyone seemed to share.
My brother-in-law was a navigator on the KC 135 tankers.  His unit’s responsibilities (along with bomber and fighter wings) included operation at full readiness.  In that capacity they had air crews “On Alert” 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 364 days a year.  The various crews rotated “On Alert” status.  When on duty they slept in special quarters, drove specially marked vehicles, flew specially located, prepped and ready to go aircraft and when the sirens went off, had to be in the air in a matter of minutes.  It was a job that everyone on the base yielded their utmost attention to and took very seriously.
I thought about the airmen being “On Alert” this morning as I read from Colossians 3:1-4 in The Message Bible.  Verse one begins by giving us the admonition “So, if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it!”  Then in the third verse we are told to “Look up, and Be Alert to what is going on around Christ --- that’s where the action is.”
While staying on that Air Force Base many years ago, I found myself constantly looking up as the booming sound and vibration of the low flying fighter jets naturally drew my attention to the skies.  I get the idea from Paul’s words in Colossians that this is exactly how we should be drawn to Christ as the sound, vibration and excitement of His love, His miraculous power and His undeserved grace causes us to want to look up and be where the action is!
Do you find yourself right smack in the middle of His action?  As an active Christian, I believe it is the place that we should all aspire to be… 24/7!  I believe that being active in His supernatural action should be a normal part of our daily responsibilities.  Is it for you?  Are you actively pursuing and finding yourself involved in His actions?  If not… then just maybe it is time for you to move on… To be “On Alert” and look up to where He is… and where He is, the action is not far behind!
Have a great day.  Stay in tune to His action by staying in the Word and keep asking yourself… “What or Whom am I expecting to be 'On ALERT' for today?”

PS:  One of the other fond memories I have of that trip is the day we returned home.  As soon as we got in the door I called my favorite girl (now my wife) who I had been away from for the incredible period of over two weeks… and stirred up some action!  I told her a little fib and let her think that we were still on the road and wouldn’t be returning until the following day.  Then I hoped in the family station wagon and zipped up to her house with the hopes of surprising her…
Well, it didn’t go off quite as I had imagined as her sister opened the door and in her usual blunt manner blurted out: “What are YOU doing here?”  That comment kind of surprised me and as I stood there trying to come up with a clever reply, I was saved as my adorable girlfriend peeked around from the hallway looking toward the front door with the cutest grin on her face and instantly brought peace and joy to the awkward situation!  To be honest, I don’t remember anything after that… but I am sure it was a wonderful reunion!
By the way, we have another early appointment with another Physical Therapist tomorrow, so I’ll be taking the day off.  But I’ll have a fresh new blog post on Thursday - See Ya then!

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