Brotherhood Exemplified: The Application
Each firefighter is trained to recognize the signs of many dangers. After reading this, you will be faced with a new training challenge. Applying your training to recognize the signs of danger in your fellow firefighters:
As firefighters, we are trained to recognize the signs of an impending flashover. Rapidly increasing temperatures, a non-tenable environment, thick turbulent smoke and then it happens…
Consider the imagery. A firefighter under significant stress begins to rapidly change their behavior, they become difficult to be around or remove themselves from any form of camaraderie, and any attempt to go near them is met with turbulent angry behavior.
This is a warning. This individual is lashing out at you not because of something you did. It is a desperate cry for help and it is sent the only way we know how. We will literally watch our lives burn down around us before we call for help.
Our pride can be our greatest demon. Are you going to wait till they call?
“Before they call, I will answer. While they are yet speaking, I will hear” Isaiah 65:24
Read the smoke, continually size-up your fellow firefighters, and watch for signs of impending problems. We pride ourselves in responding to others in need but often our greatest opportunity to make a save stands right next to us in our fire house.
Don’t miss this one. I share this with you because I did. A close friend of mine who was always the happiest guy you had ever met started to show signs of a problem.
One day, I asked him how he was doing and he frowned and shook his head. This guy never did that. He was the perpetual optimist.
That night, I stayed awake thinking about the look in his eyes. I couldn’t shake it. The following day, I discovered he had committed suicide.
I share my story with you in hopes that each of you will look around the room and realize this:
We are all that we have.
We are a family and families take care of each other. Look after each other and take this calling seriously.
Firefighters are in desperate need of encouragement. This journey to bringing back brotherhood begins with you. Will you be an agent of change? Will you encourage when no one else will?
Be an agent of positive change, and care enough to look outside of your own circumstances. The greatest rescue you may ever make may be standing right beside you.
Can you hear the cries of their heart?