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Chaplain's Weekly Devotional

"True to the Corps" - A Chaplain's Thoughts on "Composure"

Week of October 27-November 1


Someone has said that COMPOSURE is the ability to calmly repeat “Nice doggie” while you’re looking for a big stick! 

When we lived in Massachusetts I was introduced to a terror that I also discovered when we were in Ireland and Italy, the TRAFFIC CIRCLE.  No light, no signs, no cops and NO ground rules, first come, first serve!  The guy with the biggest car, or best lawyer goes first.  Personally I think God put them there to teach me about composure, or at least the art of diplomacy.

I don’t know about you but sometimes life feels a whole lot like one of those traffic circles.  I know where I’m going, and I even have a plan, BUT then along comes this traffic circle filled with a hundred “gotta’s.”  You know what I mean, I “gotta” DO this now, I “gotta” GO there soon, I “gotta” GET this immediately and in the stress of the “gotta’s” I lose my focus on where I’m going and generally at that point my composure as well.  Friends become enemies, family becomes a hindrance, work becomes dissatisfying.

So how do we deal with these “opportunities to excel” in life?  Well, I found my answer in one of the most unusual answers to prayer recorded.  When the old prophet Habakkuk saw his nation on the edge of impending disaster, he asked God to intervene.  God responded that He would, but NOT as the prophet expected.  Instead, he would send the Babylonians, a ruthless people who were known to overthrow and destroy.  At this point the prophet did a “Say What?” but God knew that what the prophet and the people both needed was not necessarily a smoother trip but a greater confidence in the driver.  Reassured of God’s commitment to his people the prophet could relax and enjoy the ride.   In fact, he utters one of the most profound statements of faith ever written, “Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior.”

So as you’re traveling along on Life’s great journey, should you come upon one of life’s traffic circles, don’t lose your composure and DON’T lash out at the folks in the vehicle with you.   You don’t need a bigger car or a better lawyer, maybe just a better driver.  


 I'm Chaplain Joel Harris, hoping you have a GRACE DAY!