I feel a little sick to my stomach. I just learned tonight that an Army chaplain was killed in Afghanistan a few days ago by a roadside bomb. He left a wife and three kids in the States.
Chaplain Dale Goetz is the first chaplain to be killed in either Iraq or Afghanistan. I can't get him out of my mind. This man not only served his country (a secondary priority), but served God and gave his life for both.
Can you imagine dying with those you serve? Can you imagine sacrificing everything while trying to reach the men and women you serve beside? What honor! What a testimony! I have no idea what his wife is going through right now, or the loved ones of the other four Soldiers who died with him in that attack. My heart goes out to her right now and I've prayed today for her and their kids. His sacrifice is their sacrifice, and forever will be. According to what I've read, his desire was for his Soldiers to know Christ, which means this guy was a straight arrow in the Kingdom. He wasn't a watered-down counselor...he was a soldier with two citizenships. I don't know what he would think of himself, but I think he's a hero.
Alas, it is a testimony I don't have, nor will I any time soon. I'm not even able to go overseas at all right now, due to my job as an AEGIS firecontrolman and due to the fact that my daughter has cystic fibrosis. That is why I'm a little ill.
For once, I want my life on the line. I want to stick my neck out for God and see what happens. But that isn't going to happen soon. As of right now, I can't even say that I've had to pay for my faith with my career, much less my life. I've heard of missionaries being beaten and now I've read about a chaplain dying in the service of his country (and God, even if the insurgents weren't attacking him directly). Alas...what will they say about me someday?
This post is a celebration of a family. It is the celebration of Dale Goetz who gave his life in the line of duty and it is in celebration of his wife and children who will never see him alive again, until the day they meet in heaven. He fought the good fight, he finished the race, he kept the faith. That is what I want people to say about me someday, and that's what I'm saying about Dale now.
Rest easy Chaps...