You are My Hero!
Military kids face battles most Americans don’t see. But thanks to you, Hero Squad is delivering reminders of God’s love right to their front doors.
September 25, 2021Print this article
You’ve probably experienced the warm rush of a neatly wrapped package arriving in the mail—just for you.
Maybe your parents shipped you a box of your favorite cookies during your first semester of college. Perhaps you still remember a large, mysterious gift box emblazoned with the words: Do not open until Christmas! Or maybe it was simply a recent Amazon package containing that book you’ve been dying to read.
But have you ever received a package that made you literally jump up and down for joy?
Jump for joy is exactly what James and Amy Davis, two military kids in an Air Force family, did when they received a very special package in the mail earlier this year.
The package was from you.
“It was just an ordinary homeschool day when our doorbell rang,” recalls their mom, Sara, whose husband serves in Special Operations for the U.S. Air Force. “My kids ran to the door and said, ‘There’s a big heavy box here!’ ”
But the real fun started when James and Amy noticed the names on the box.
“Mom,” they shouted, “it has our name on it!”
Your support makes military kids jump for joy.
If you can picture the astonished grins on their faces, then you are starting to experience the magic of Hero Squad—a brand new program from American Bible Society’s Armed Services Ministry. Hero Squad uses your generous monthly support to send gifts communicating God’s love and our nation’s gratitude to 4,200 military children and 3,800 military parents. (And those numbers are growing quickly!)
“They were so excited to open the box,” Sara remembers. “They started cheering!”
As with any present, it’s what’s inside the box that really counts.
The support of Hero Squad partners provides military children with quarterly care packages filled the brim with surprises. The very first box always includes a Bible for each child, equipping them with their most critical resource as they navigate the difficult terrain of military life.
Hero Squad care boxes also include devotionals targeted for boys and girls at each child’s reading level that speak to the unique challenges faced by military children every day, along with fun activities designed to draw families closer together. The boxes even contain branded Hero Squad clothing, coffee mugs with freshly roasted coffee, and other gifts to bless military parents as well as their children.
“The kids loved everything,” Sara reports, adding that she and her husband also benefited from the Hero Squad care package. “The fresh coffee for mom and dad was probably the first thing we used up,” she laughs.
But for the Davis family, the most impactful gifts in their Hero Squad box were the military-themed Scripture engagement resources that helped James and Amy discover God’s love and strength in the pages of their new Bibles. Sara says she has been blown away by the military-specific content woven into each Bible resource in their care package.
“The Following Jesus Bible, along with the Hero Squad devotions and journals, are a great way to get our kids thinking about God,” Sara says. “My daughter is an introvert, so talking through these devotions has given me a new way to bond with her.”
According to Sara, these Bible resources, along with the feeling that each package was specially designed for her family, puts Hero Squad in a league of its own.
“There are other outreach and service programs for military families, but this one was really special,” Sara says. “Hero Squad has so much more substance than other programs. It hit close to home—figuratively and literally! Someone clearly put the energy into tailoring it specifically for my kids—including their age and gender.”
Military life is unpredictable and lonely.
As a faithful supporter of American Bible Society’s ministry to the U.S. Armed Forces, you know just how desperately our brave military families need personalized, Bible-based care like this.
“The highs of military life are really high. God has used the military to take us to some wild, exciting places,” Sara says. “But the lows are really low. Over time, it has become harder and harder to stay resilient and energized.”
The intense loneliness and unpredictability of military life were on full display during the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, Sara says that this past year of lockdown was the first time her closest friends and family could begin to relate to what her military life feels like all the time.
“COVID was the first time most civilians really had to grapple with being completely isolated and out of control,” Sara explains. “That’s how life is for us in the military! We have to live each day to the fullest, but we’re ready at all times for a last-second deployment.”
On top of the normal stresses of military life, the Davis family had to relocate for a new assignment at the height of the health crisis in 2020, moving all the way from Maryland to the Nevada desert. And it wasn’t easy making new friends in a town where the casinos stayed open but the churches and schools were shuttered.
“I do not recommend moving cross-country in a pandemic. It’s a bumpy ride!” Sara says. “We were so isolated and lonely. Neighbors saw our license plate and steered clear of us. They assumed we carried out-of-state germs.”
The Davis family claims Joshua 1:9 as their family motto: “Be strong and courageous … for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” But clinging to the promise of this Scripture passage proved challenging when the reality of their new life set in.
The move was especially devastating for Sara’s 11-year-old son, James, who is on pace to attend seven different schools by the time he is in seventh grade. For the first time in his life, James started to show signs of anxiety. He expressed deep sadness to his parents about the life and friends he had to leave behind in Maryland.
For Sara and the 1.2 million military spouses like her, these heart-wrenching conversations with their kids are often the hardest part of military life.
“In a strange way, I’m always prepared for someone to show up at our door in uniform and tell me that my husband is hurt or has died,” Sara says. “But watching my kids suffer and struggle with change? That’s 100 million times harder than anything else.”
The Bible brings the love of Jesus to military families.
But Sara knows that even in the darkest and loneliest valleys of military life, God’s Word contains the precious words of healing, courage, and love that she, her husband, and her children desperately need. Your special Hero Squad Scripture delivery arrived just in time for her struggling kids.
“Regardless of your age, the Bible can gently nudge you out of your fears, anxieties, and skepticism, so that your personal walk with Jesus can develop,” Sara says. “He is calling my son and daughter to trust him through his Word.”
Thanks to you, a dark, lonely year was made a whole lot brighter through the arrival of God’s Word in their Hero Squad care package.
“Nobody joins the military to be thanked or for perks and free things. But after such an isolating year, it made my heart so happy to be able to show my kids their Hero Squad box and tell them, ‘People put time and energy into creating this box and sending it to you.’ The Hero Squad program lets my kids know that people appreciate them and the ways they serve our country and make sacrifices, too,’” Sara says.
Your message of thanks was not lost on James and Amy. In the midst of a difficult year, they want you to know: “You made us feel really special!”
You are a hero to our heroes!
You (yes, you!) are the faithful heroes who support our nation’s heroes. You hold them up in prayer and fortify their faith in the Word of God as they so selflessly lay down their lives for our freedom. And, through Hero Squad, you provide their families with the Bible resources they need to follow God with courage and faith—reminding them, as Joshua 1:9 promises, that God is indeed, “with you wherever you go.”
Sara and the growing number of Hero Squad military families send you their deepest thanks for encouraging them on their journey through the hope and strength of the Scriptures.
“It is so humbling to think that somebody like you would give so sacrificially to encourage my family,” Sara says. “Thank you! It’s very meaningful.”
Sara does, however, have one more favor to ask you:
“If you would take a minute to pray for strength, stamina, peace, and courage for military kids everywhere—as a mom, that would mean the world to me.”
You Can Bless More Military Families!
Sara’s story is just the beginning. There are literally thousands of military families getting blessed by the Hero Squad program—and thousands more yet to reach.
- “Thank you so much for all you do to help our children feel important and learn about Jesus,” says one Air Force wife.
- “My four kids were so excited to open their Hero Squad box and pull out all of their gifts. My daughter reached for her Bible and said that she was excited to read a chapter every day!” says an Army National Guard wife.
- “We are so looking forward to this! We found Hero Squad at the perfect time, as my kids have been really struggling with Daddy being deployed. Thank you for all you do!” says one grateful Navy wife.
There are even more military children who need to meet the God of the Bible and grow in his love throughout the year, but the only way that can happen is through monthly giving.
Won’t you help the children of America’s heroes experience God’s hope and peace during their darkest hours? Sign up to become a monthly Hero Squad supporter today!
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