To Protect and to Serve…

do not crossI grew up with both parents involved in law enforcement. My daddy was a Greenwood Police Officer and later a GPD Detective, and my mother was a State Parole Officer. My Great-grandfather was retired from the Greenwood Police Department by the time I was born. My aunt married a policeman. Most all of our family friends were also involved in law enforcement in some capacity or another. Some of them still are. My husband is involved in law enforcement. Many of our friends are too. I have been on a local board that is heavily involved with law enforcement for several years now. So, in a sense, my heart bleeds blue.

I have been so disturbed by the recent headlines of police officers being killed just for their career choice. They have been villianized to a degree that I don’t remember in my lifetime. I will say to begin that there are “bad cops” just like there are bad doctors, bad teachers, bad nurses, bad preachers, and bad elected officials, I know that and you know that. There is no profession that I know of where everyone is perfect and corruption might not arise from time to time and person to person. Likewise, because they are human and not perfect this side of heaven, there are also “good cops” who have bad days and make bad decisions occasionally. I was recently telling a friend of mine that you’d almost have to be a trained lawyer to police in today’s times and not ever mess up. You’d also need the patience of Job not to crack under the pressures of provocation and despicable treatment.

DADDY CHIEF AND JESSIE

Yet we want them to keep us safe. We want them to come when we call. We depend on them to keep the dangerous people off the streets and away from our families. We want them to be strong, authoritative, and protective of all of us “good people”. I was raised to be overly respectful of law enforcement in general. I was privy to learning from an early age WHY they ask people to do some of the things they do. I knew that little girls want their daddy’s to come home from work safe and whole. I knew that sometimes bad guys (or “mean mans” as I called them when I was little) sometimes wanted to hurt my daddy and others that I love. I have seen my daddy come home after having been shot at. I have seen him come home after having seen the violence of mankind manifest itself in leaving men, women, teenagers and children dead, broken or bleeding. I know that sometimes the officers have just left the scene of a child being abused horribly – and then answer a call for a neighbor who is playing their music too loudly. The things they see, smell and experience on a daily basis would traumatize most of us – yet they go back “10-8” and answer that next call no matter how trivial it may be in comparison. They rush towards danger, when everyone else is running away. They even comfort us until family can arrive after an emergency.

PAPA HOTEL IRVING

Many of them that I know have a real gallows sense of humor. They don’t cry. They don’t flinch. They condition themselves not to express their emotions. Most of them have true servants’ hearts though. Nobody goes into a law enforcement career expecting to become rich. They do it because as cliché as it sounds, they want to help people and make a difference. They want to protect and serve others.

When I was a little girl, I didn’t really worry about my daddy too much while he was at work. I believed him to be invincible. I knew that he would put a stop to any mean man trying to hurt someone. I was secure that he would always be the victor against any evil he crossed. It was after I was an adult – when one of our Leflore County Deputies was killed in the line of duty that I understood what a thin blue line is. That day I cried. I knew Deputy Brown a little and he had always been kind to me, but that is not the only reason I cried. I cried and sobbed for his children… for all his loved ones and friends and co-workers. And, I cried for my not knowing – or maybe not allowing myself to understand the precarious position that our officers face everyday.

I understand that now. I get a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I hear of an officer killed or wounded in the line of duty or even when they are off duty. If I’m not careful, it makes me cry still. You see, they deal with life and death situations nearly every day. Mercifully, most of us deal with emergency circumstances rarely, and certainly not on purpose. It hurts my heart to know that the thugs of the world have declared open season on law enforcement. It matters. It is deplorable. It is unconscionable. It is wicked and evil. It is a good indicator of pending chaos in our world. Please pray for our officers. Please ask the Lord to guide them in their service and to protect them from those that seek to do them harm. I know it is popular to walk up to a veteran or military member and say “Thank you for your service.” Why can’t we do that for our police, our deputies, our state troopers, and others in law enforcement? We can and we should. They have for the most part a very thankless job. We mainly hear about them when something goes wrong. Not for their fulfilling a constant and quiet duty to us.

I have seen lately that “black lives matter” and “white lives matter” and “blue lives matter.” Yes, they all do. However, I submit to you that ALL LIFE MATTERS. Our Heavenly Father made us all in His image. He loves us, and He sent His only begotten Son to take our sins onto Himself and be beaten, tortured and killed in our place and for our sakes. More wonderful still, He rose again and is at the right hand of our Father in heaven – and will receive us unto Himself again. He didn’t do all of that for us to try to shout down each other about how important WE or OUR particular click is… He did it so that we might all live eternally with Him. We need Jesus. If you haven’t received Him into your heart, please call on Him today. If you need to talk to someone about it, send me a private message. I’ll be glad to try to help you, or point you in the direction of someone who can. Only through the Lord Jesus, will we be able to understand His teachings. Only with Him will we be able to truly love each other. Only with Him will we be able to do unto others as [we] would have them do unto [us]. Only with His Love in our hearts can we love our neighbors as ourselves. Only with His guidance can we have the peace that surpasses all understanding. Only when we are held in His hand can we feel His comfort, His protection, His provision, His grace, His Mercy and His never ending love. And only with Him can we understand how very depraved the human heart is apart from Him. We are all sinners. Not one of us is righteous apart from Jesus. We do not need to get ourselves together before we ask Him into our hearts. He will make us new. He will wash us clean. He will cast our sins as far as the East is from the West. A life well lived in the service of the Lord matters more than anything in this world.

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.” Matthew 5:9

“The wicked flee when no man pursueth: but the righteous are bold as a lion.” Proverbs 28:1

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.  For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved.” John 3:16-20

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