We Still Believe
“He did it with all his heart and prospered.”
2 Chronicles 31:21
As a member of the family of the fire service, we share a bond like none other. Our family consists of a unique group of individuals who, despite their differences or backgrounds, come together with their collective strengths and accomplish amazing things under very harsh circumstances. We are able at a moment’s notice to strategize and formulate a plan to mitigate an incident that we may have never even faced before.
We come from all walks of life. We are a diverse group of men and women who, as a whole, care about others more than ourselves. We share a common drive to better ourselves all for the sake of others. Our stations are called “fire houses” because they are our “home away from home”. We spend approximately 1/3rd of our lives with our brothers and sisters in the fire house. We come to know the good, bad, and the ugly sides of one another and work through it all. We are there for our fellow citizens in the tough times and we are there for each other in our times of difficulty.
The fire service has suffered many attacks lately due to the world’s financial crisis. Once it was unthinkable to suggest that a municipality would consider laying off firefighters. Sadly, many have lost their jobs, saw stations close, and in some cities, firefighters are duct taping their boots together to get by.
After 9/11, the fire service received support in almost epic proportions. Funding, grants, donations, and our support from the public were tremendous. As in all things, we have seen this appreciation fade. Why in the face of so much adversity would anyone want to be a firefighter these days?
Charles Spurgeon says “This is no unusual occurrence; it is the general rule of the moral universe that those men prosper who do their work with all their hearts, while those are almost certain to fail who go to their labor leaving half their hearts behind them”
The men & women of the fire service love what we do. Many perform their calling as a volunteer receiving no compensation for all of their time, effort, and sacrifice. Some of us are career firefighters, who also volunteer as well. The men & women of the fire service “work with all their hearts” and believe in something much bigger than themselves. The fire service, no matter how much it is cut back, will always be a brotherhood of those who give more than they receive. No other profession, besides our armed forces (God Bless Them!), willingly sacrifices their time, their health, and even their life for the sake of others.
Whether or not you believe in God, know that the fire service is a tradition of belief. We believe in values, traditions, and morals that are eternal. We wear a cross on our chest that symbolizes the first firefighters in Malta who died or were severely injured while they rescued their brothers who were being burned. We don’t require recognition, appreciation, or even a thank you. We do what we do out of our great love for the calling. A calling that says “We will be here, we will show up when no one else will, & we will do everything in our power to protect or save your life.” We still believe in this calling.
While the world may seem to becoming less compassionate, less appreciative, and less concerned about others. Remember there are dedicated men & women who serve together, no matter their differences or backgrounds, and will be there to help in a moment’s notices. My friends, this is the power of belief.