Greetings by Brent Richardson

I feel blessed to be given the opportunity to serve in this outreach ministry. I enjoy working with my leaders and the members of Sentinels. Going on our fifth month, we are still in our infancy, but we are growing and learning. We’ve already developed tighter bonds with each other that may not have happened without this ministry. We have a lot of plans going forward. One of which is to start an outreach to those that are less mobile, as well as many other opportunities to be more involved in our community. As far as outings coming up, we are planning to go up to the white-water center in Charlotte as well as a night out at Top Golf.  The future of Sentinels seems to be limitless. God has truly blessed us.

Those that are new to this group, welcome!  Our ministry is a fellowship ministry, our success is dependent on us getting to know each other, challenging and holding each other accountable. We do this two-fold. First, we hold a monthly meeting, where we learn, pray for each other, and grow closer to each other through our walk with the Lord. Second, we have social outings that range from backyard BBQ’s to, well, white-water rafting.

Just a little background on me, a condensed version of my testimony: I grew up in Virginia where I was saved at a small Southern Baptist Church. Like many of our youth I became one of those bad statistics that youth pastors read sometimes; I didn’t have a strong, nor a growing, relationship with God. I began rebelling from home, to the point that when my Senior year rolled around I was living with my high school girlfriend. I enlisted in the Marine Corps. After boot camp I was stationed at Camp Lejeune with 2/8 WPNS CO. AA PLT.  My girlfriend left me while I was in boot camp, and I slipped further away from the right path. Most people go in to the military thinking if something is going to happen to me it will be because of a bullet, IED, or something of that nature, I was never expecting a virus. The day after Hurricane Floyd flooded base, my unit decided to go on a mud run through the flood waters. The waters behind the PX were usually ankle deep, this day they were chest high. It hit me suddenly, and put me in a month-long coma. I was clinically dead a few times, but the Lord had plans for me though by all accounts I didn’t deserve His Grace. My lungs never recovered from the battering they took. This virus ultimately caused me to leave the Marines. I wish that I could’ve stayed longer, but as I said before, God has other plans for me, like creating this group. It took me ten years of backsliding before I repented of my sins, and by the Grace and patience of God I recommitted myself to Christ. I still fall short every day, but that will not stop me from striving towards Him.

When we created this group, we wanted to be centered on God’s teachings in His Word. Also, we want to be an outreach to bring the Gospel to a lost world. Unlike many veteran groups, we do not share war stories during group meetings. That means no combat related stories. We share in our struggles and successes and hold each other accountable.

I look forward to the future of Sentinels, and please continue to keep us in your prayers.

Thank you for your service to our Nation and our Community,

Brent Richardson

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