Back in 1775, my Marine Corps came alive. That’s right, I am 241 years old! Well not me as Jai Johnston, but me as Sgt Johnston is 241 years old! The greatest celebration (second to Christmas), in my books, is the Marine Corps birthday. First of all, there’s cake! Guaranteed. Secondly, the celebration of tradition, values, brotherhood, and Marines before us shows how tight-knit the bond of Marines young and old are. This is the year of the reunion as General Neller announced in his birthday message. Find a Marine and befriend him. Contact your old Marine buddy and check up on him. Marines have a knack for keeping feelings inside and doing unimaginable things. Reach out and touch somebody. Today is a day of celebration and you never know the difference you can make by reaching out and grabbing a drink to celebrate 241 years. Happy Birthday, Marines.
As far as updates go, things are busy. I started taking two more classes online through Liberty University Online. Is it bad that I already can’t wait until it’s over? These classes started October 24th (same day I left for bootcamp in 2011). We had our birthday ball in Charlotte a couple weeks ago. That birthday ball was by far the best one I have been to in five years. Our special guest was the Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps. General Amos (Retired) was there and we even had the Marine Corps Band there. An incredible evening. Shoutout to Jordan for tagging along. He’s going to bootcamp soon.
Now something, if you know me well, that I get very excited about is Christmas. Walt Disney World has started the holidays already and the Christmas decorations are coming up everywhere on property! The Magic Kingdom was decorated, in part, the day after Halloween, and it finished decorations just a few days later. The Magic Kingdom is hosting a Christmas party on select nights through the holidays and I plan to be there. Who’s coming with me?! Another really exciting thing that is happening right now is that we are currently filming the stage shows for all the holiday specials on TV. Last night I was able to go to Magic Kingdom and be in the filmed audience for Garth Brook and Trisha Yearwood. They sang incredibly! Also, apparently Garth is going to be in Greenville soon. He was taking questions from the audience and someone said they were going to see him in South Carolina and he was like, “You’ll be in Greenville? I’ll see you there!” I feel like I need a ticket to that show. There were famous people everywhere. They will be filming all around the property this year and filming the Christmas parade at Disneyland in California. You can watch the show I was in the audience for on ABC on Thanksgiving.
Last Sunday I was scheduled to work in the afternoon since I’m on deployment (working at another resort for a week), and I was able to go back to Calvary Baptist Church in Winter Garden. My friend Caleb is in Orlando on business so he and I were both able to go. It is incredible how the Lord places you in certain situations and environments and shows you His providence. I was fortunate enough to make a lot of great friends at Calvary not only through our common bond, Jesus Christ, but through mutual friends from Bob Jones and The Wilds. Please pray that the upcoming vacation bid (yes, they’re back already) will be a success and I will get Sundays off. I believe this may very be the family I will be getting plugged into. Praise the Lord!
What an incredible month it has been. I’ve done a lot of new things (primarily all the holiday stuff). This is going to be an incredible holiday season because I am in a new place, experiencing new things, and fulfilling bucket list items. Plus, my family gets to come for Christmas! Thank you to all you praying folks and your dedication to prayer for me. Please pray for the vacation bids coming up. Also please pray that I can get plugged into church and balance everything else (work, school, friendships, church, etc.). And finally, happy birthday, Marines. I love you all and am proud of our rich history. Until next time: Be strong. Love God. Love others.