Just 3 days before he and 5 other Baton Rouge officers were ambushed, murdered police officer Montreal Jackson wrote “I’m tired physically and emotionally…I swear to God I love this city but I wonder if this city loves me…Please don’t let hate infect your heart. …If you see me and need a hug or want to say a prayer. I Got you.”
Montreal’s words echo a common theme in law enforcement today. Officers are physically and emotionally tired, their families live in constant fear, each day they keep leaving their families to protect ours, but they wonder, does anyone care? I Got YOU, WHO has me?
They courageously go back out on the street with both words and actions that say in the loudest possible way, “I Got YOU!” But who has them?
With the high profile events of the last several weeks its easy to get lost in the blur of events and fail to remember that every event in and of itself changes the life of a spouse, children, family, friends, squads, precincts and departments forever. Before we can honorably honor one fallen officer there is another. Before one officer can heal from their shooting, another officer is shot or is forced to shoot in defense of their life or the lives of others.
“I’m tired physically and emotionally…” I would add to these powerful words, “spiritually and relationally.” Event’s like the ones we have seen nationally and locally are an assault, not just on life, but on every part of our humanity. The threat is not just physical, but spiritual, emotional, and relational. Police officers are now in conflict as they are torn between the high calling of their profession and the calls by family members to “get off the street!”
While our communities rightfully are concerned about killing of Police Officers, we can not forget that this is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the forces out to destroy the lives of those who protect us. For approx. every 1 officer killed in the line of duty, 8 take their own life in desperation or depression, 150 injured, 500 assaulted, 80% of their marriages end in divorce.
Every day we count on being able to dial a magic number to have all our problems solved – 911. In unison they say, “I Got YOU!” This incredible human gift must be protected and served.
Through Paraclete, I have been incredibly busy (but never too busy) to come alongside our officers and their families in the line of duty death of Officer David Glasser, and as we continue to serve the many officers deeply affected by his death. Officers that have been shot or in shootings,in the last few weeks, while they did not give the ultimate sacrifice, it is no less serious to them or their families. Officers who have had loved ones die, they need the compassion of a pastor for their grief and to serve them for the funeral as their loss is no less important than the ones that make the news. Officers struggling with marriage or parenting issues. Or simply bringing donuts to a squad just to say, “You are appreciated and prayed for.”
This is how YOU, through Paraclete says to our officers and their families, I Got YOU!
Thank you to our faithful monthly supporters and to those who have joined us in the last few weeks, we really needed you! Also thank you to those supporters who helped put our truck back in service after the clutch went out, you put us back in action in just two days. Thank you to all who support us and our Law enforcement community.
Executive Director – Paraclete
Chaplain – Phoenix Police Department