Requiem For a Warrior: A Veteran’s Quest For Truth

imageWhat are the struggles that veterans face every day? What are the lies that we have been made to believe in? What is the truth and how do we find it? This is a brief account of my observations in regard to misconceptions that most veterans have to face. Each of these observations could be an entire entry, but maybe with a bit of brevity we can begin to share with our brothers and sisters, lighten hearts, heal souls, and do our part to save each other from physical and eternal death.

The struggle vets face in the civilian world is real, yet it often times seems almost too cartoonish for us. We see people wearing absurd clothing, with disgusting attitudes, and who are hell bent on spewing garbage from their mouths.  We have felt compelled to share certain moments of anxiety, anger, fear, and loneliness, with people who have no understanding of what any of that means to us. I’ve personally been in a department store when an overwhelming feeling rushes over me and I reach for an M-4 that I no longer carry and scan for the nearest exit.  I’ve been through the despair and feelings of disgrace as if I was lost with nowhere to retreat. I remember the tears streaking down my face with a 9mm in my hand, trying to figure it all out.  I remember receiving those calls from families of my brothers who just couldn’t handle it any longer.

soldier-praying-e1333865018265The myths we hear and accept as truth are above counting. We will be heroes and every one will respect us. Having military service will ensure employment in the civilian world. If we hold our ground and tackle everything that stands in front of us with violence and aggression it will solve any problem. If we have enough intestinal fortitude and will power we do not need help and if we ask for help we are soft. We are told that if anything should happen to us that the government will have our backs.  We learned compassion is for the weak, mercy is unacceptable, and forgiveness is sin. These lies feed the monster in us. These lies told to us are created by a monster. Satan’s best lie is that he doesn’t exist and we fall victim to this lie every day. We believe we can conqueror worldly problems by ourselves, but we are so very wrong.

The truth is that our problems are all caused by deep seeded issues we can’t see, touch, or feel. These problems are caused by our actions in events that happened to us in the past. They affect our present  and threaten our future. We have to admit our struggles (John 1:8-9) because God already knows our pain and He is waiting. So begin asking God to reveal the lies you have believed in and replace them with His truth.  Breaking the lies and myths we were trained to believe in isn’t going to be easy or even possible if we do it alone.  We have to get out our hip pocket manual, the Bible, and read it every day. We must pray (James 5:16) and talk to God for in Him is truth. We have to ask for forgiveness, patience, wisdom and His grace to heal our souls. We must ask Him to guide us on the narrow path to His love.

After many years and with guidance from many mentors, I have found several verses that have helped me along the way. To this day I still search and find more and more in God’s word that guides me through each day:

wartiredNow, I haven’t begun to even scratch the surface of how God’s word can help lead us to the truth, but I do hope that by providing these few, it will encourage you to grab your Bible and start digging. My fellow warriors of faith, when you find yourself lost, admit your struggle, target and nullify the lies and myths we have been taught and destroy them with the truth. The only truth we can rely on. God’s truth.

Mike Trammel
Mike Trammel is a former combat medic with U.S. Army and two completed deployments to Iraq. Service time from 1997 to 2007. He currently lives in Jackson TN.