Today was a very special day for me. By invitation, I attended our local college at the outset of an eight-month course that serves as an employment prerequisite for local policing. I am so thankful and appreciative of the person who invited me. It is an incredible honor and privilege to have an opportunity to speak into the lives of young people who are aspiring to serve and protect communities such as Brandon, or others across Canada through the RCMP, OPP, Manitoba First Nations Police, WPS, or wherever their journey may land them. For many of the 17 students, this was their first introduction to police chaplaincy, and to listen to the challenges within the journey of a 32-year policing career - my first 17 years policing without Jesus and now 15 wonderful years with my Savior. Many years ago, I began pondering how beneficial it would have been for me if a veteran police officer would have spoken into my life at the outset of my policing career and shared snippets of their hardships and victories. Thus, I purposed over a decade ago that I would be the person to begin that conversation with the students before I exposed them to any teachings pertaining to the world of police forensics.
Policing will change you regardless of your morals, values and education; it's whether you can recognize the changes and then have the boldness, courage and humility to deal with them head on - that will be the difference maker regarding the longevity of your policing career and the quality of your life. Today, I shared many things including what I've learned about the triune being - spirit, soul, and body. We must pay close attention to all three for God our Creator placed these within our very essence according to His perfect plan and purpose for our lives. As chaplains we are caregivers, ones to bring awareness to things concealed while speaking words of life and encouragement to police officers, their families, and our civilian support staff. We need family and we need each other and for those of us who have embraced a faith life, we know we need God each and every day.
I informed them of Project Sword (through FCPO) and a few students received the specially prepared books designed for peace officers containing testimonies from officers combined with the NIV Bible translation. They were encouraged to access our CPCA website to acquire multi-faith information and resources. I concluded the presentation with prayer because I believe in the life changing power of prayer. Every moment of my time at the college today was a privilege. To answer the call to serve and protect life and property in a world filled with individuals exhibiting drug induced violent behavior and flagrant displays of hatred towards police, requires boldness and courage and incredible strength of character. Therefore, we owe it to these young men and women aspiring to become police officers to ensure that they move forward with eyes wide open, not with fear, but with peace and confidence knowing that all things are possible to those who believe. I know where my strength comes from and my prayer is that they too will lean on a strength that goes beyond human comprehension and beyond self. To God be the glory.
Constable/Chaplain Bruce Ewanyshyn