The first few weeks of the New Year have come and gone. Hopefully everyone has finally made the transition of labeling things with the correct date.
We finished the year 2016 with a new and special giveaway. Seven police department employees received tactical Christmas stocking overflowing with booty. Celebrating the gift of Jesus by giving generously was fantastic fun. Here are a couple of the winners:
NEW CHIEF at CVPD
Retirement of Chula Vista Police Chief Bejarano initiated a new season with Chief Roxana Kennedy. I was invited by the Chief to present the invocation at her swearing in. I was able to make more personal to her rather than for the audience, and in doing so, was able to affirm her in her faith and recognize her love or God. Since she is a woman of faith, she welcomed my invitation to meet weekly and share prayer and some encouragement from the scriptures. I am excited to work under her leadership.
2 Timothy 2:2 says: The things you have heard and seen in me, these entrust to faithful men who will teach others also.
The application of this verse is being played out in healthy doses around the departments where I serve. There are new officers wandering the halls and getting accustomed to the challenges of their new career. They are mentored by seasoned Field Training Officers (FTO) who pour into these new officers a life-giving enthusiasm that will be needed as they embark on their career. This mentoring is a healthy state for both officers. I can feel the new surge of new energy as the fresh officers become empowered.
In 2017 we anticipate presenting our 100th Code 7 new officer welcome pack. The welcome packs include a Certificate of Congratulations and a small cooler full of useful and fun items affirming our appreciation for their service, and our commitment to support and encourage them as they serve in this honorable profession.
They received the gifts and a special pair of engraved handcuffs at a presentation during the officer line up in front of their peers. The presentation and recognition has become a terrific unifying moment when new officers become a formal and official member of the squad. I am always excited to be able to stand and lead the time of celebration and inclusion for each new officer.
Regional Chaplain Training in January was a success as we were instructed in Active Listening Skills by the former SDPD Crisis Negotiations Team leader. Our objectives were to grow in our communication skills, understanding high emotions, recognizing aggression and hostility, gaining negotiation skills to influence, and de-escalation strategies.
We also learned the value of using these skills in our everyday lives and relationship; we will become better listeners and enjoy clearer communication.
I was in line up for the graveyard shift just a day ago and as we started, the training Sergeant came up to instruct the squad on the new version of body camera being issued. The new camera update included a new magnetic mounting apparatus for the officers’ uniform. As the training Sergeant described the device, he emphasized the strength of the magnet by dubbing it, “God’s grip” magnet.
When he said it again, he looked in my direction and I gave him an authorizing smile, nod and affirming thumbs up. He quickly continued, “This specific magnet system is Chaplain approved, isn’t that right Wes?” I said, “Yes, definitely, we all need God’s grip in our lives because He never lets go.” “There you have it, he continued, the Chaplain recommends we all recognize the power of God’s grip.”
That was such a fun banter of interaction with the Sergeant! Thanks, God for these spontaneous opportunities to proclaim the simple, yet profound truths of your love and grace to the officers. If you are curious as to what God’s grip looks like, it’s pictured below for you.
CODE 7 GEAR
I invite you to view theses two pictures and join me in celebrating the successful branding of Code 7. The phrase, “one picture is worth ten thousand words” comes to mind as I viewed texts attached pictures shown below. I immediately knew the significance of the photos based on my past interaction with separate cops.
Thank you, God for providing me with opportunities to share your generous love with others. As you look at the pictures they sent, please pause and give thanks for God’s unending love and the relationships He has established. It would take 20,000 words to adequately describe value of these pictures to me. Thanks, God for what you are doing through Code 7 and for letting me tag along for the ride.
Jesus said, “I am the Vine, you are the branches. When you’re joined with me and I with you, the relation intimate and organic, the harvest is sure to be abundant.” John 15:5
Thanks to you, my faithful supporters, the number of impacted lives continues to grow. With God, all things are possible. Although in some cases many miles apart, with you, we journey together in our mission of bringing hope into the lives and workplaces of our law enforcement. From the top of my heart – thank you!
Founder/Chaplain Code 7
“Though our feelings come and go, God’s love for us does not.”