National Training Center community urged to pray without ceasing
April 14, 2011
FORT IRWIN, Calif.-After two years as a task force unit ministry team observer controller at the Combat Maneuver Training Center in Hohenfels, Germany from 2002-2004, the last assignment Chaplain (Maj.) Addison Burgess wanted after attending the Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kan. was the Operations Group senior chaplain combat training at the National Training Center.
But that's the one he received, Chaplain Burgess told the more than 200 Soldiers, family members and civilians gathered for the National Prayer Breakfast celebration at the National Training Center and Fort Irwin.
"God has your career in His hands, your assignment," he said. "Fort Irwin was not the assignment. I was praying."
Prayer was at the heart of Chaplain Burgess' message as he illustrated the principle of praying without ceasing explained in the Bible 1 Thessalonians 5:16.
"I said, 'There are only a couple of things I can do there and I already did OC, so I must be going to installation,'" he said. "I said, 'It doesn't make sense.' God said, 'You're going back in the trenches again."
God told him he was going back into that vehicle, which makes him very uncomfortable, because of his 6'8" frame and follow troops from Forward Operations Base to Forward Operations Base, Chaplain Burgess said.
"Sometimes when He calls us to do things that make us feel very uncomfortable, He's right there in the midst," he said. "When you came on the installation here, He was in that car with you. He was encouraging you to hang in there. Good days are coming. Great days will be here."
Chaplain Burgess encouraged the audience to get out in the community, meet people and get involved.
"When I became a part of the community, I saw love. I saw people who wanted to be my extended family," he said. "Don't give up. Don't stop praying. God never sleeps. He never slumbers. He sees the beginning. He sees the end."
As he closed his message, Chaplain Burgess urged the audience to be like Jacob in the Bible, who waited seven years to marry Rachel, only to end up marrying her sister, Leah, who hid behind a veil on their wedding day.
"He didn't give up on God. He stayed with her for another seven years and God blessed him and he ended up marrying Rachel," Chaplain Burgess explained. "What are you saying, chaplain' He knows you. He knows your name. God made you. He appointed you. He chose you to be a part of history here at Fort Irwin, California, so don't stop praying. God is here."