Son, are you really sure about this?

Published 4:25 pm Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Father and son were having another lunch together, just like many other times, but this one would be different. The son would tell his father about his future plans.

The man had spent all of his life as father holding his hands around his children. He had raised them, son and daughter, in the admonition and nurture of the Lord. Both had grown into very nice adults.

The son had just finished his university education and was on the cusp of his chosen vocation. It was that vocation that gave the dad a start.
“Dad, I want to go into law enforcement,” the son said.

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His dad thought without saying. Son, you could be anything you want to be. Your mind is good, your health also. I am proud of your faith and your future looks bright. He wasn’t expecting this choice.

“Are you sure, son?” he asked. “That is a very difficult vocation.”

He continued, “You realize the danger that faces you every time you go to work? You know that people will treat you with suspicion and, when they see you, they will try their best to go the other way? Do you realize that you may go to work a thousand days and never be appreciated? Yet, on the one day when you happen to make a mistake, like all human beings, your name will be mud all over town.”

“Are you really sure about this?” the dad asked one more time.

“I think I am called to be in law enforcement,” the son said. “I have prayed about it; just like you taught me and I think God is actually calling me into this important field.”

The Lord’s calling. That was the one thing with which the father could not argue. But, dad had something else to say.

“Son, being in law enforcement is a huge responsibility. We, the people, give you that badge and that uniform and, most importantly that weapon, and we trust you with it. All of those are symbols of our desires to have a civil society; one in which people are treated fairly and can go about their lives in security.”

“I know, dad,” the young man said; proud and even surer of his decision.

Finally, the dad accepted his son’s decision and found that he, too, was proud that this young man was actually exhibiting the lessons that he had tried so diligently to teach him.

Still, dad’s years of experience told him that the road would be unpredictable.

Dad knew that any call to which his son responded might be his last. Dad also had seen the news on television.

There are people who, for no reason at all, except an irrational hatred, have chosen to target the brave men and women of our law enforcement agencies for their evil intentions.

Why just the other day, a husband and father, himself, had simply been filling up a car with gasoline and just because he wore the uniform of law enforcement…that seemed to be the only reason…a criminal whose only accomplishment in life was a substantial rap sheet, slipped up behind him and fatally ambushed the loved husband and father. That might be his son.

I’ll end with two questions for us all. First, why would our best young men and women want to enter such an important profession when they know there is no respect or support? Secondly, if we can’t attract our best and brightest into such an important profession, just who and what will our first line defense against “wrong” look like?