In the theater of my mind, memories of Iraq play out in high definition. Here recently, my memories have been of friends who did not die but were gruesomely injured. My friend Antwi was wounded with his leg amputated at the hip. Brown was permanently disfigured in his face because of four IEDs. Kevin was blown apart by a rocket in the Humvee. Bush had both legs broken in the same explosion. My Lt. had his arm blown off in the same attack. Rhodes (my first roommate) was killed after driving over a tank mine. There are too many to list. There seems to be no end of it. Then there are the civilian lives that were lost because of senseless attacks. Our interpreter was kidnapped. The insurgents raped his mother, father, brothers, sisters and then beheaded them. They made him watch. Then they beheaded him. It was a land filled with violence and hatred. It is no wonder that I came home with a death wish.
That was then. Now, I seek peace. Life and memories may cause me endless heartache, but if I take it one step at a time I can overcome it. The trouble that followed me home, the mistrust that I feel when I meet someone new, and the never-ending ringing in my ears are only temporary. At some point, I will meet my Savior face-to-face. In my times of trouble, God is my refuge. When I can’t sleep, He is my comfort. If life gets to crazy, He steps on the raging sea of my life and whispers, “Peace be still.” It is never too late to find an altar and give it all to God. In the worst moments of my life, God never left me. He placed good people in my life and they helped me overcome the struggles that I faced. May God richly bless you all. Take care!