(Hey, Church) Support the Troops

If you were following along with us last week, you saw Josh's Veterans Day all-call video. The ugly statistic the military often uses is that more veterans have died by suicide between 2005 and 2017 than troops that died in Vietnam, Iraq, and Afghanistan combined. Since 2020 began, active duty veterans alone have seen a 30% increase in suicides. Josh asked HOW WILL THE CHURCH RESPOND?

If your church has serve opportunities for music, kids, single moms, nursing homes, and substance abuse programs, then what is keeping your church from having a structured veteran ministry?

Usually, the issue is wedged between never really thinking about it and not knowing what to do. This is often an overwhelming place to start, but it's how every harvest field begins. As with most kingdom work, we have to look at the soul before we look at the stuff on a to-do list. Getting to know the needs of the people will always answer the question of "what do we do?"

So before we let our imaginations create hashtags and t-shirt fundraisers, consider the lives of these real-life situations first:

  • The female soldier that deploys every 18 months with three children at home.

  • The National Guard veteran that is going to school between drill weekends and deployments.

  • The mother who has a son in Afghanistan.

  • The former marine with post-traumatic stress struggling to find a job.

  • The Vietnam vet that is too old to mow his own grass.

If we took a minute to imagine a day in the life of any of these scenarios, we'd probably be able to think of a dozen wa