It was cold, and it was rainy. I remember being drenched in my Army Combat Uniform (ACU) while standing next to my chaplain at Camp Shelby, Mississipi. We were preparing to mobilize for deployment overseas, and Mississipi tried everything possible to make that preparation cold, wet, and miserable. There was a platoon off to our left, lining up in formation. They were soaking wet, muddy, and looked exhausted. What’s more, they hadn’t finished training yet.
That’s when I heard it for the first time: the platoon sergeant called them to attention, and the soggy soldiers yelled out a motto, as is military custom, “embrace the SUCK!” Knowing this wasn’t their actual company motto (at least I refused to believe they’d allow it), I loved it! It turns out that saying is popular among the military. And it’s something I’ve never forgotten. Embrace the suck—a comical answer to an incredibly morbid situation, a common theme in a soldier’s life. It symbolizes that things aren’t great right now. It encourages one to do hard work, face the situation head-on, and embrace the hard times.
It’s safe to say that the life of a Kingdom Responder is worse than that day at Camp Shelby right now. All of us have felt the toils of 2020. And all of us are getting close to our wit’s end…, and it’s not over. Well, as someone once told me, “You’re stuck here. You’re not going anywhere, so your only good option left is to make the best of it.” In military terms, he said, “embrace the SUCK!” So, for all of those soggy, oppressed, and exhausted people out there trying to put their best foot forward even when it’s broke, embrace the SUCK! Say it loud, say it together, and laugh it off. We can’t escape our present times, but we can unequivocally embrace it as one!
We’re tired. We’re worn out. Our bone’s are becoming brittle. You are a God who knows suffering. You are a God who knows what it is like to be tired. And You are a God who sees, a God who loves, and a God who does not forget His people. Strengthen us, encourage us, and embower us to face our exhaustion the only way we can, with a hopeful heart, a positive mind, and a strong Faith that relies on You and You alone. Deliver us from our suffering, but most importantly, move us closer to You. All things good come through Your perfect timing. Help us to see this. Amen.