By Pamela Kulokas, Joint Base Lewis-McChord Garrison Public AffairsJune 3, 2019
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- The duty day started May 28 a bit differently than normal with the Joint Base Lewis-McChord community coming together for the National Prayer Breakfast at the American Lake Conference Center.
Guest speaker, retired Chaplain (Col.) Jim Carter, shared a message that encouraged attendees to honor God and others with: their words, their walk, their work and through their worship.
"You represent a lot this morning," Carter said. "You represent your unit, you represent the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the Marines, the civilians. But you also represent something larger than yourself. And are you honoring that? Are you honoring our gracious God?"
Honor, Carter said, means to prize or put high value on something. He recalled a conversation with his father right before he left for college. His father told him to remember who he was and what he represented and to honor the Carter name.
"Boy, those words stuck with me on many a Friday and Saturday nights," Carter said with a laugh. "Many evenings, I could hear Richard Carter going 'remember who you are: your name, Carter.'"
Taming the tongue and blessing others with words -- this directs life, Carter said.
"Your words matter," Carter said. "We honor God and we honor others by our words, and we learn how to do that by going to His word. It teaches us how to speak and honor other people. His word is in one sense a very strong map."
Carter recalled a time in which he and his driver got lost on the autobahn in Germany because they didn't plan well and forgot to bring a map.
"We live in a world where many people don't know where they're going, because they're not studying the map. What's the map? The map is God's word. If you study it, you hide it in your heart, you digest it, you meditate on it -- it will guide you in life issues."
Carter also spoke about walking with integrity and acting rightly when others aren't watching.
He told a story of a father and son who went fishing and caught a beautiful bass. The son wasn't very happy when his father told him to put it back, because the fishing season didn't start until the following day.
"My point is every day, dear friends, we're faced with these challenges," Carter said. "But moral clarity wins the day; we honor God by our walk."
The work we do, he said, should express appreciation for God's approval of us.
"You're to work out your calling and honor God through your work," Carter said.
So many people are chasing something to fill a void in their heart, he said. They worship it as if it's going to satisfy their soul.
"Nothing but a personal relationship with almighty God can satisfy," Carter said. "He loves you; he loves this installation. Don't chase something that's not going to fill your soul. Honor Him today, and allow the Lord to transform you and your relationships that you're a part of."
Chief Master Sergeant Rob Schultz, command chief master sergeant of the 62nd Airlift Wing, said the message from Carter resonated with him.
"It was a great message, and it's got me motivated to do a little better in my own life," he said.
Captain Erich McGuffey, commander for the Headquarters Support Company, 7th Infantry Division, said he also enjoyed the message and plans to apply it.
"Spiritual readiness is a key component for the everyday walk of life, not just for the military, but to weave it into your workplace, too," he said.