Cover Story

Holding the line

"Holding the line" Continued...

Issue: "No pray zone?," July 13, 2013

Last year, Hamm, getting close to the cut-off age of 42, filled out the 57-page application and was accepted. He left the June conference with the sobering realization that some in power “oppose what we do and what we believe,” but he said he has no regrets about joining: “My faith helps me to have a really big view of God and a peaceful calming view of his sovereignty in every situation. We have Christ on our side and we have God on our side and nothing can take that away.”

Hamm is more concerned about getting into shape so he can pass the physical requirements during his 13-week chaplain training school set for this fall. A personal trainer who goes to Hamm’s church is putting him on an exercise regime that includes running on an elevated treadmill while wearing weighted vests. He will have to run two miles within 18 minutes and do 35 pushups and 35 sit-ups in two minutes each, and he also wants to gain the respect of his future soldiers by running stride for stride with them even though he will be twice their age—even if that means jumping out of airplanes with the 82nd Airborne.

“That would be awesome,” Hamm said.

Edward Lee Pitts
Edward Lee Pitts

Lee teaches journalism at Dordt College in Sioux Center, Iowa, and is the associate dean of the World Journalism Institute.


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