Indivisible tells the story of U.S. Army Chaplain Darren Turner, and his 2007 deployment to Iraq. He had just finished chaplain school and been assigned to Fort Stewart when his unit deployed for 15 months as part of the “Surge.” He had been in the Army only three months. Over the course of the deployment the battalion had fifteen casualties, and multiple IED and rocket attacks — what a way for a brand new chaplain to start his ministry! He came back messed up, and that led his wife to kick him out of the house and for him to leave the Army for a job at Home Depot (a greenhouse in the movie). After a year apart, and serious marital counseling, he and his wife, Heather, got back together and he re-entered the Army, where he has served since.
This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/arts-essays/2018/movie-review-indivisible-chaplains-story
Many, especially atheists and agnostics, question God concerning war. Atheists loose all faith, agnostics hedge their bets and Christians use a very familiar term, “mystery”. And not a few turn away from Christianity altogether to embrace the pantheistic eastern spirituality, becoming vegetarian and joining the likes of Green Peace and PETA, even turning militant against their old faith.
But war is not God’s making. The devil rebelled and war ensued. It tore heaven apart and brought the Son of God down to brutal shame, separating the family into heaven and earth. In an emergency, “why” is for later. We live, since Adam, in one of constant harassment. “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.” 1 Peter 5:8.
Knowing the decisions of God in every case throughout history, why He decided what He decided, is indeed a mystery; much like a soldier or chaplain sitting quietly in the setting sun and wondering what on earth was he doing there. He is not privy to the deliberations made in the Situation Room far away, and so nothing is clear to him except that he must continue on in ever-present fear and dread, separated from his family and friends. If only He could be assured that the President cared for him like he were the only person in the world, it would be so much easier.
And that is what God provided through Jesus Christ: that assurance, the promise that there is life after death, that your endurance will not be in vain. God cares for you personally in the midst of the brutality of hatred, evil games and scheming against you. In the end, all things will be made right. From that perspective, GOD IS NOT A MYSTERY AT ALL.
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