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While They Serve
By Edie Melson

No Man Left Behind

Sometimes we need to go the extra mile–several times–for military families.

No Man Left Behind, the unofficial Marine Corps slogan. This phrase sums up the tight bond found in this branch of service, as well as others. No matter how bad things get, those in the Corps know they'll never be left behind.

I've also noticed that this same bond is often found between those who have a loved one serving in the armed services. I certainly found that kind of loyalty among other moms who had a son or daughter in the military. Beyond moms, my support base quickly expanded to include other family members, wives, sisters, aunts, etc.

6 Things to Remember When Military Life Gets Rough

When a loved one's deployment has you overwhelmed, here's help.

Loving someone who's serving in the military can have its challenges. The struggles we face go beyond the overwhelming fear we feel during deployments. Often it's the small things that can be the most trying.

To cope, I developed a list of reminders to help me keep things in perspective when I got overwhelmed:

The Art of Belonging and the Military Family

Guest blogger Ginger Harrington on one of the hardest, but best, parts of military life.

Today's guest blogger is Ginger Harrington, a career Marine Corps spouse and mother of three grown children.

"Belong" is a tough word for military families, frequently moving from one duty station to another. Change seems to be the constant of our lives, and it is hard to find the oasis of belonging in a desert of different. 

3 Lessons About God’s Provision from a Marine Mom

During a stressful deployment, how to see what God has given to help you cope

When the dew fell on the camp at night, the manna would fall with it. (Numbers 11:9)

One night, while I was praying for our Marine Corps son on deployment to Iraq, I came across this verse about Manna. When I dug more deeply into the verse, looking for the definition of Manna, it became abundantly clear that God was speaking to me about the burdens I was carrying with a son at war.

But All I Can Do Is Pray…

Don't refer to prayer as an afterthought, make it #1 on your to-do list.

“So here is what I say to you. Ask, and it will be given to you. Search, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you.” (Luke 11:9)

Having a loved one in the military can leave us feeling utterly helpless. Events come at us at the speed of light, and we don’t even have the ability to get out of the way.

6 Milestones on the Military Family’s Walk of Faith

Deployment is a difficult road, but not one you have to travel alone.

Be strong and courageous; don’t be terrified or afraid of them. For it is the Lord your God who goes with you; He will not leave you or forsake you.  (Deuteronomy 31:6)

As military families, we’ve been chosen to travel a difficult path. It’s one punctuated by highs and lows, twisting through long dark valleys. The road is rocky, and the going is tough. But it’s a road we never travel alone.

Celebrating the Heroes on the Home Front

Behind every service man and woman are the multitudes who love and support them.

When we think about military service, our thoughts turn immediately to those serving–the ones fighting the battles. While the sacrifices of the men and women serving in the armed forces are of the highest order, I’d like to take a minute to celebrate those who support them. I refer to them as the heroes on the home front.

I know that standing behind every service man and woman is a multitude of people who love and support them. These are just a few:

30-Day Deployment Challenge–Operation Gratitude

When it comes to prayer, how to throw away the negative laundry list and turn it into one of thanksgiving

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. (Philippians 4:12)

Deployment can throw us into the midst of chaos. If we lose our focus and dwell on that turmoil, it can seem that everywhere we turn, there’s nothing but worry and regret. 

5 Things to Remember During Deployment

How to combat the fear and stress for military families at a tough time

Deployment is tough, you don’t need anyone to remind you of that. But you may need some other reminders. To combat the fear and stress that seem to overwhelm us during these times, I’ve come up with a list of five things to remember during deployment.

1. Deployment isn’t permanent. 
So often those times apart seem to go on forever. No matter how it feels at the time, it really is a temporary situation. Think about the times ahead and try not to get bogged down in the moment.

Wars and Rumors of War

Will your loved one be deployed? How to cope with that worry.

When you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be frightened; those things must take place; but that is not yet the end. (Mark 13:7)

For those of us with close ties to the military, the immediacy of our society can be a double-edged sword. While it’s good to know what’s happening around the world, every armed conflict brings one question to mind.

Will my loved one be deployed?

Edie Melson is a leading professional in the publishing industry. She also knows what it’s like to send a loved one off to war. Her oldest son went from high school graduation, to Marine Corp boot camp, to Iraq; where he served two tours fighting on the front lines as an infantry Marine. Fighting Fear: Winning the War at Home When Your Soldier Leaves for Battle, is Edie’s heart project. Look for her two newest books for military families debuting in 2014: While My Son Serves and While My Husband Serves. You can also connect with Edie on Twitter and Facebook.

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