Mark is both delighted and highly honored to welcome Chaplain (Maj. Gen.) Steven A. Schaick, the US Air Force Chief of Chaplains, to the podcast this week. In his role, Chaplain Schaick is the senior pastor for more than 685,000 active duty, Guard, Reserve and civilian forces serving in the U.S. and overseas. He leads a Department of the Air Force Chaplain Corps of approximately 2,000 chaplains and religious affairs Airmen from the active duty and Air Reserve components. The passage he has chosen to discuss with Mark is II Samuel 9-11.
Chaplain Schaick’s summary of the passage reaches back to its roots in an earlier chapter in II Samuel that introduces listeners to the relatively little known Mephibosheth, and the similarity of his story to that of Joseph. He and Mark explore the notion of people who have been ‘dropped’, their tendency to allow themselves to be defined by their setbacks, and the Chaplain’s strategies for encouraging all to focus upon their blessings in life. He finishes up the podcast by offering a glimpse of how chaplaincy works with so many service members of different faiths, and, of course, the lessons he has learned about humankind. Brimming with wisdom and insight, Chaplain Schaick’s analysis of this fascinating passage here today reveals its direct relevance not only to his noble ministry but to society as whole, particularly during the pandemic, offering enlightening information and valuable advice for us all in the process.
· Chaplain Schaick’s summary of the passage, the character introduced in it, and why it’s important for him · The roots of the story in II Samuel 4 and Mephibosheth · This story’s similarity to Joseph’s story · People who have been ‘dropped’ · Focusing on what we can be grateful for even during the pandemic · Clinging to negative experiences · Ministering to those defining themselves by their setbacks · The value of journaling and finding blessings throughout the day · How chaplaincy works among so many people of different faiths · The lessons about humankind that Chaplain Schaick has learned
“I want to show God’s kindness to whoever remains.”
“He’s gone from a nothing to a Prince.”
“There is so much that has not changed, and, quite frankly, so much to be thankful for even in the midst of this difficult time.”
“This COVID pandemic has been renamed as ‘the thing who has taken everything away from us’, when, in fact, that simply is not true, especially for men and women of faith.”
“This was a life defining event for him, as it is for so many people in Africa today.”
“So many of us allow ourselves to be defined by what we’re not.”
“We’ve been welcomed to be Princes and Princesses and allowed to eat with the King.”
“Be a regular and disciplined rememberer of those things that are well with me.”
“Writing out five things that went well for you today.”
“Be on the hunt for things during the day that really, truly are blessings.”
“Increasingly, young people these days are really agnostic when it comes to the brand of theology.”
“Young people today are just looking for authenticity.”
“We’ll have Southern Baptists going to Muslim prayer service.”
“We’ll have Jews attending Christian service.”
“Some connect better with others…religion is largely personality informed and driven.”
“Human beings are extraordinary actors and actresses.”
“Even the most joyful among us are walking a hard road.”
“Persons who give the great religions of the world a chance, almost never come up, you know, wanting.”
“Faith, for me, is a compass.”
“Religion and the word, ligament, come from the very same root word.”
II Samuel 9-11 - https://www.sefaria.org/II_Samuel.9.1-11.27?lang=en&with=all&lang2=en
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