The Warrior-Monk

Web search General (4 star) James Norman Mattis, USMC to read about the man, his many accomplishments, and among his many nicknames, you will find “The Warrior-Monk,” attributed to him. He was, and still is a living military genius who can rightfully call Napoleon Bonaparte a peer. General Mattis understood and practiced USMC doctrine, and he used it to train Marines under his command to determine how to meet the National Objective by planning, resourcing, and accomplishing an operation by leading Marines in doctrinally correct missions using innovative ways and means.

General Mattis amassed an incredible library of books on many subjects, not just previous military campaigns, military weaponry, and military technology, but politics, human behavior, agriculture, and how to get into the minds of the people whose leadership chose to constrain a U.S. core objective. He shared his books with his Marines so that they could understand better why he asked them to plan and to act. This is where the “Monk” part fits in his nickname. President Trump put the right man in the right place by naming Retired General Mattis as his Secretary of Defense, but it was folly to expect Mattis to behave like a talking parrot, which is what Trump wanted all of his advisors to be.

There have been other warrior-monks throughout human history. Web search the Gaelic (Irish) Monk, Saint Columba. You should find an admixture in Columba, the warrior son of a proud family, and a repentant Christian, willing to atone for a mistake that cost many lives. You will have to decide if he was used by a Holy See (the Pope) to turn pagans into Christians on the coastal island of Iona in 533 (533 years after the birth of Jesus, the Christ), and then sent out the new Christians as missionaries far beyond the isolated lands of Scotland and Ireland.

Isn’t it interesting how the lives of some seem to be spent as an example to others? The Christian Bible contains such a story. Web Search the Book of Job. It is an Old Testament Book, and there is a debate about who wrote it. I believe that Moses wrote it. God communicated directly with Moses during the Exodus of the Hebrew people from bondage in Egypt. His direct presence and communication with Moses, within the vicinity of the Hebrew people lasted 40 years! There was plenty of time and a reason for Moses to be used as a conduit to record God’s point of view. By the time of the Exodus, the Hebrew people had no clear idea of what they meant to God or what God expected of them, so they were taught. One of the lessons was in the Book of Job. It is a bitter lesson. I have had to read it many times to glean an understanding of what God wants.

Essentially, Job was both righteous and wealthy before a seemingly unending plague of misfortune fell upon him. He lost his family, his children, his wealth, and his health, yet throughout it all, he praised God for such grace that he could have. Most pointedly, Job’s friends relentlessly told Job that he must have done something that angered God, and they assumed that God must not be angered with them because they did not suffer such misery.

At the end of it, Job did not waver in his trust and devotion to God. The things that happened to Job were not a punishment or even a test. They were a demonstration meant for unbelievers and for those weak in faith to see. The lesson is that none of us own or even have anything that we deserve. We have what we are allowed. Even if we are grateful for what we have, it may still be taken from us. If God determines that we must suffer in order to help others to find him, brace up, endure, trust, and pray. God will notice, and he will appreciate you all the more for your faith in him during crisis in your life.

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