Monday, January 23, 2012

We Protect the Heavies

Tuskegee Airman were an elite group of African-American pilots in the 1940s. They were pioneers in equality and integration of the Armed Forces. The term "Tuskegee Airmen" refers to all who were involved in the Army Air Corps program to train African Americans to fly and maintain combat aircraft.

The Tuskegee Airmen included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors, and all the personnel who kept the planes in the air. The primary flight training for these service members took place at the Division of Aeronautics of Tuskegee Institute. Air Corps officials built a separate facility at Tuskegee Army Air Field to train the pilots. The Tuskegee Airmen not only battled enemies during wartime but also fought against racism and segregation thus proving they were just as good as any other pilot.

Racism was common during World War II and many people did not want blacks to become pilots. They trained in overcrowded classrooms and airstrips, and suffered from the racist attitude of some military officials. The Tuskegee Airman suffered many hardships, but they proved themselves to be world class pilots.

Even though the Tuskegee Airmen proved their worth as military pilots they were still forced to operate in segregated units and did not fight alongside their white countrymen. The men earned the nickname "Red Tail Angels" since the bombers considered their escorts "angels" and the red paint on the propeller and tail of their planes.

My mind has been racing since I left this movie. I thought, "Our churches, our ministries would be so much better if we learned how to PROTECT THE HEAVIES. Instead of receiving glory for ourselves, building a name for us individually, instead of becoming known as the ACE or master Pilot, we learned to work together, fly together, and protect the assignment given to us.

Just like the Red Tails who escorted the bombers, we in the church should be protecting the angels that come in our doors every day. It is our job to protect them so that they might be able to make a rational and intelligent decision about accepting Christ as their Savior. Yes your name may not be called, Yes you may not get the chance to have an appreciation service in your honor, yes it sometimes is a thankless job, but we so need people who will sacrifice their glory for some one's else greater good.

We Protect the Heavies. People with broken hearts, people with wounded spirits, people shattered by loss of life, job and income, people who have been abandoned and discarded by life and who feel like no one cares. We protect the Heavies.

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