We Do What We Can

The picture above is a picture of the ship I served in the Navy, the USS Mt. Whitney. It is an amphibious command ship, now having the home port in Italy. I knew she had been in the shipyards over there. The Navy plans on using this ship for another 20 years. That is interesting because, at least according to an article I read sometime back, the Mt. Whitney is the third oldest ship in the fleet now. The Mt. Whitney‘s sister ship, the USS Blue Ridge is number 2. And the oldest is this really old ship, dating back to wooden hulls, the USS Constitution.

When I was in the Navy, Mt. Whitney‘s home port was Norfolk, VA. The Blue Ridge‘s home port was San Diego, and the Constitution (really only used for show and ceremonial purposes today) has her home port in Boston. That was almost 40 years ago. Today Mt. Whitney‘s home port is in Italy. The Blue Ridge is in Japan. Constitution is still in Boston.

Today in the waters off the Italian port city of Gaeta, the Mt. Whitney played the Italian national anthem. It may sound funny, an American Navy ship playing a foreign country’s national anthem. It isn’t the first time, I feel pretty certain it won’t be the last.

It wasn’t even the first time for Mt. Whitney. On my first cruise to Europe in 1978 we entered the port of Dublin. I was part of the ship’s honor guard for that cruise. We went to a national cemetery in Dublin where Vice Admiral W.L. McDonald laid a wreath at the Irish equivalent of “The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.” It was a moving ceremony and the band played the Irish National Anthem. No, we were not on the ship but it was a ship’s function. 40 years ago, it was for ceremony.

Today it was the Mt. Whitney showing solidarity with the Italian people through this Cobid19 world crisis. While the ship’s crew and a large compliment of private mariners who work on Mt. Whitney, the people around them are their friends and neighbors. It was their way of saying we are with you, this is about all of us.

A few months back, one of my old shipmates posted a Facebook meme with our old ship on it. The meme said, “When I was 20, this was my happy place.” I said then, I won’t say it was my happy place, but I sure had some happy times there.

Mt. Whitney had several loving if not complementary nicknames. She was called the “Funny Twenty,” “Building 20 (We didn’t leave Norfolk very often,” “Fat Albert.” That is just a few.

With what the captain and crew of Mt. Whitney did yesterday I am certainly proud of my old ship. Playing the Italian national anthem may seem small thing, but sometimes even small things can make a big difference.

Yesterday morning, early, Cindy and I went to Walmart to buy supplies for two friends in need who live in a local retirement home. They are under quarantine and can’t get to the story.

He is a Navy guy to but I met in ministry not in the Navy. If he was on and read this I would insert just for him, “we are both Navy guys, only he was on a ship with wooden hulls and decks.

The truth is, I have no idea if Blue Ridge after returning played the Japanese National Anthem or not. I am thinking likely not.

The Mt. Whitney could have come home and done nothing. That is nothing uncommon. We could have ignored our friends needs

What can you do? The list is endless, shopping, cooking, talking on the phone and even if you can do nothing else, you can ALWAYS pray.

Find something you can do and start telling the world you are there to help.

Let’s all do what we can’t. Be smart, but get out and help. When Cindy and I got the the retirement center, Cindy called our friend who came to the front door she could have stayed shuttered inside.

Please, be careful out there, do what you can for someone else, and I know you will be blessed.

Seeking the Genuine,

Copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

If your church could use some prayer, leave us the book

And if your church needs prayer during these difficult times, please leave your church name in the comments and I will create a list. You can come to a post on Facebook and find a church for which you want to pray.

Seeking the Genuine,

Copyright 2020, J Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission Given for non-commercial use of this material


Source http://www.military.com

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

One thought on “We Do What We Can

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: