In addition to serving as Pastor of our church, I also have been given the privilege to serve as chaplain to the amazing men and women of the Bradenton Police Department. This is a relatively new assignment that has quickly become a highlight for me in the ministry.
I attended the April 13 memorial service that honors those officers who have fallen in the line of duty and paid the ultimate price to serve.
This was my first time attending this significant annual event, which resulted in moving my heart to an even deeper place of honor, respect and appreciation for those who labor in this most noble position.
As this grand memorial service began to unfold, the weight of who we were remembering and the magnitude of what they and their loved ones had sacrificed began to shake my emotions; I was undone. As I stood alongside the gallant officers of the various law enforcement agencies in my police chaplain’s uniform that includes a gold shield, I thought to myself, I do not deserve to wear this.
I was speaking with Pastor Ron Stagg of Christian Family Fellowship, who serves as one of the chaplains for the Manatee County Sheriff’s Department, following the service. He said to me that he considers what these men and women do is a true calling from God; I agree.
According to Romans 13:1–5 :
“1 Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.
“2 Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.
“3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you.
“4 For he is God’s servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer.
“5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience.”
The siren and flashing lights of a police car only cause fear to those who are doing wrong, but it brings comfort to those who are in need of rescue.
Three things we can do to Honor the badge: Pray for law enforcement. Obey the laws of the land. Weigh what they put on the line each day of their lives.
That’s the Kingdom Perspective!
Kingdom Life Christian Church, meets every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. at The Renaissance on 9th located at 1816 9th Street West in Bradenton. Call (941) 776-0026 or visit www.kingdomlifechristianchurch.org for more information. Email comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org.