Winter Always Turns to Spring

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. -- We have faced many challenging moments during this past winter season forcing our community to deal with very serious issues. As I watch how our community has come together it reminds me of an old Japanese proverb, "winter always turns to spring." The message behind this encouraging saying is that no matter what difficulties one may encounter, they can always be overcome through determination, strength and faith.

Determination is a key ingredient necessary for overcoming our obstacles. Especially with the high operations tempo we face today. Units are constantly deploying their work force while being tasked to produce at higher levels. All the while training requirements, personal affairs and emerging issues compound the levels of stress and anxiety felt by everyone involved. Having the courage and will to face these dilemmas and continuing with a positive and focused attitude allows us to maintain the morale of the unit and ultimately accomplish the mission. However, in order to sustain this level of determination, we must possess a high degree of strength.

Strength is the fuel that feeds our determination. It is defined as "the power to resist strain or stress." Strength gives us the ability to stand up when we have fallen; the courage to decide when we are unsure; and the vigor to continue the fight when we are exhausted. This is the same strength that permeated our community as we grappled with recent tragedies; in effect, allowing us to heal together and begin anew - together. Our community exhibits strength every day as we to do our part in the greater scope of deterrence and national security. This is possible because we are true to our cause.

Faith is the moral aspect that keeps us believing when we are ready to give up. It is easy to become overwhelmed by a bad situation, but faith rejuvenates our resolve thus providing us the ability to apply our wisdom and experience towards correcting a situation and producing a positive outcome. Also, faith provides the spiritual comfort of knowing we are not alone in our efforts and permits us to trust that our intentions are indeed true and correct. Importantly, faith allows us to rely on our core values and in each other to bring together the unit and the community as a whole. Faith lays the foundation for us to engage any situation with strength and determination so we may overcome our obstacles.

As we continue with our day-to-day challenges, I encourage all of us to remain determined to overcome our obstacles and strong enough to resist the strains of stress we may encounter personally or professionally. As well, I challenge all of us to remain faithful to ourselves and to each other so we may create a unified and positive community here at Whiteman AFB. I know this is possible because winter always turns to spring!