Sunday, July 09, 2006

Tom's at OCS

Yesterday Steve and I drove Tom to a motel in Montgomery where he and seven other Marine candidates spent the night. This morning they flew to Atlanta, then to Washington, D.C., where they were met and bused to Quantico, Virginia. They will spend the next six weeks there at Officer Candidate School.

If you think of him, please pray for Tom and the other young men at OCS for this period. It's very hot and humid there in July and August. We lived there for the last 3 1/2 years, right next to the base, so Tom knows what sort of sultry mugginess to expect. And he's aware of the ticks and other bugs he's likely to encounter. But he and the other guys will be pushed to their physical limits, and I'm praying for his physical safety, his mind to be alert, and his heart to be compassionate toward his fellow candidates.

Steve said the next six weeks will fly by... for us. For Tom, he said, they will seem like forever. On Friday night Steve and my dad prayed over Tom. Last Sunday our church prayed for him during the Sunday morning worship service. I've been praying for him constantly, and will continue to do so. Steve warned Tom that he most likely will not have time for a regular Bible study, or even time to read his Bible. He encouraged Tom to pray fervently and remember what he already knows of the Word.

Steve went through OCS 26 years ago. He was 24 years old and had already been in the Marine Corps for 6 years, but he says it was harder for him than boot camp, and boot camp was tough. Tom thinks he'll be okay because he grew up as a Marine's kid. (Steve wasn't exactly like Robert Duvall in "The Great Santini," but he came pretty close for a few years before he became a Christian!) Tom knows his two older brothers "breezed through" Air Force basic training and Army basic training because, in their words, "We grew up with Steve as our dad!" (They were bragging when they said this - NOT whining about their childhood.) But Steve worries that Tom will find it a lot harder than he anticipates. For his part, Tom confessed that he's looking forward to going through the next 6 weeks with other men. Up till now his Marine journey has been quite solitary.

So if you think of Tom, please pray for him... and for his mama and daddy!



Blogger Jennie C. said...

Best wishes for Tom.

5:15 AM  
Blogger Jeannine said...

I'll be praying!

7:52 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

Jennie and Jeannine - Thank you!

5:58 PM  
Blogger Marla said...

Dearest Laura,
Hubby and I and children will remember Tom in our prayers. I believe God will be close to him and will give him strength. When he is finished, he'll look back and remember how the Lord upheld him, just like the Lord did for my husband when he was in boot camp! Hugs to you!

4:13 AM  
Blogger Amber Dawn said...

Hey Laura...Tom is looking more and more like Steve..especially with the bald head! What an amazing way to understand better about training for the race and then straining toward the finished line no matter what. I'll be praying for Tom too! Miss you!

ams :)

9:15 PM  

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