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Chaplain's Corner: A cup of joe and a proverb to go

By Chaplain (Capt.) Angie Erickson | 176th Wing Staff Chaplain | Aug. 6, 2015


The "Chaplain's Corner" offers perspectives to enhance spiritual/religious resiliency in support of Air Force and Army Comprehensive Fitness programs.

Comments regarding specific beliefs, practices, or behaviors are strictly those of the author and do not convey  endorsement by the U.S. government, the Department of Defense, the Army, the Air Force, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, or the 673d Air Base Wing.

Visiting people in their workspace is exciting for me. I get a little intel into one's personal life. Pictures, knick-knacks and perhaps some creature comforts from home are what most people use to create a home away from home.

If you were to visit my office you would quickly gather I like coffee and words.

Words? Yes, words found on signs, wooden cutouts and on my chalk board. They are words that encourage, strengthen and ignite hope and joy into my life.

Many of these words can be found in the Book of Proverbs - usually situated in the center of the Bible. 

Credited to King Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, they are classified as wisdom literature and are intended to instruct the wise to become wiser and the simple-minded to avoid becoming a fool.

There are 31 proverbs - one per day, to give us insight into daily living. What sort of wisdom do they lend?

They show us how to become skillful in honoring our parents and raising our children, how to manage our money and conduct our sexual lives, how to go to work and exercise leadership, how to use words well and treat others kindly, how to eat healthy, and how to cultivate healthy emotions within ourselves so we can have a right attitude about others, and so much more.
I have found that reading a proverb a day is better than taking a vitamin - because this book mentors, equips and prepares us for not only the trials we will face, but also for the blessings from the Lord when we strive to live in obedience and put our faith into action.

I have several favorite proverbs - one on my business card is Proverbs 27:17. This verse reminds us "as iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another."

We are called to mentor and be mentored by those around us - continually maturing and becoming the best that we can be. 

Another favorite of mine, Proverbs 31, is one I use for marriage enrichment, which speaks of a wife of noble character. In verse 26 it states, "She speaks with wisdom, and faithful instruction is on her tongue."

At the end of each month, my husband reads this entire proverb to me, and he calls me his P-31 bride.

How do you think this makes me feel? I will tell you I feel loved, blessed and encouraged. It causes me to always move and serve with a pep in my step.

Having the most important person in my life pour God's precious word into my heart and mind makes me want to be the best wife, mother and good neighbor I can be. 

Having been a military spouse and a member of several chapel systems, I feel compelled to reach out to not only our service members, but also to their family members - serving as a resource and support especially during deployments.

Chaplains have been instrumental in helping my family, tour after tour, grow in our faith and love for Jesus and each other.

Indeed, I have been blessed to meet some remarkable chaplains and want to encourage you to reach out to your unit chaplain. The communication is 100-percent confidential and the wise counsel and encouragement are free.

I, like all of our chaplains, want to assist you with your spiritual maturity and resiliency. I want to help you with your struggles and offer you encouragement, so please stop by and see me and have a cup of joe and a proverb to go. My office is in Hangar 18, Room 230.