September 27

Written by Bill Grandi on September 27th, 2023

I took part in an intervention yesterday.

No…not the kind that confronts a family member or church member or a friend who needs help. You know…the one who is drinking too much, or is becoming (or is) addicted to drugs, or the one who is thinking of or has tried self-harm.

Not that kind. I serve as the chaplain for the Owen County Sheriff’s Department (OCSD) and have since the new sheriff took over in January of 2023. I’m honored to do so. I’ve met some really cool men (sorry, there are no ladies at this point, although they would be welcomed). An intervention takes place after there has been a traumatic event take place involving deputies, first responders, fire personnel…public servants. Sheriff White will usually text me and say, “Bill, we need an intervention. Can we do it on such-and-such a day?”

We’ve had several-each one for a different reason. They are designed for the folks to talk, cry if they want, share their experience, vent, and allow them to heal. It allows me and others to speak life into each other, to facilitate a judgment-free space where honesty and openness are vital.

Sort of reminds me of what the church should be all about. Not necessarily a circle where people sit down and open up (although it could be that), but most definitely a judgment free zone where a person can be open and honest. It goes without saying that we all need each other and I have written about that in other devotions. But Paul’s words to the church in Corinth in I Corinthians 11 about the working of the body are so pertinent. We all need each other. When one hurts we all hurt; when one cries we all cry; when one laughs we all laugh with them.

When the church acts like the church should. we would be surprised at a difference we would make in the lives of others, and there is no telling what kind of healing, help and encouragement will come out of it.

But I’d sure like to see that!


12 Comments so far ↓

  1. Diane Ronzino says:

    Wow, Bill, that is awesome that you are a part of interventions! How very special that they have something like that. And you are so right about the church – what we are supposed to be. That is what my pastor passionately preached on Sunday. God bless you for all you do for people. To me, you are a true pastor.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Hi Diane! Good to hear from you!! I do believe the church must become a safe place for hurting people. Oh yeah…we are all hurting people. 🙂 Thanks for the kind words. And thanks for visiting.

  2. Glynn says:

    A beautiful thing to do, Bill. We forget that police officers, firefighters, and other first responders face trauma and tragedy almost every day.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      Thanks Glynn. And you are right. I never realized how much they are affected by what they experience. They truly need to be supported, encouraged and applauded.

  3. Cheryl says:

    This reminded me of the quote, “The Christian army is the only army that shoots its wounded.” It amazes me how we can be so quick to attack one another in the body of Christ & there is often more compassion & understanding shown in secular support circles, such as the one you participate in, Pastor Bill. You are an amazing soldier of the cross, and I can see by watching your online services how you handle your congregants with love and kindness—just as you handle the souls you deal with in the intervention program. The OCSD is abundantly blessed to have you on board as their chaplain.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      That is one of my favorite quotes Cheryl and I forgot to include it. I am so glad you did. I am grateful for your kind words. I have to give a shout out to the amazing people and leadership of the church I pastor though. They have “allowed” me to spread my wings to minister to the broader community, not just them. They have been a phenomenal group to work with and for. Thanks for watching online and giving your analysis.

  4. Ryan S. says:

    I imagine hearing some of the details and working through the emotion can have a toll on you as well. Praying you are able to maintain the appropriate level of interaction without requiring an intervention of your own. Thank you for serving the community Bill.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      I am spared the most gory details Ryan. I don’t even know where the latest accident was to be honest. I don’t know all the details. but I do appreciate your concern and will take note if I need a sound board. And truthfully, this is really the first time I have felt “free” to serve the community. There is a story there that I may share some day.

  5. What an honor for you, Bill, to be so closely involved with the local police department. Being God’s servant, you are perfect for this job. May everyone be blessed by your presence and helping hand.
    And yes, the church would look different, for sure!

  6. gail says:

    Sometimes the best thing you can do for someone is just to give them your undivided attention. We cannot always walk in the others person’s shoes, but we can always stop and listen to their story, and just be there for them. Thanks Bill for being there for the community.

    • Bill Grandi says:

      You are right about the importance of listening Gail. Sometimes that is all someone needs. I give a whole of credit to the leaders and the church family for “allowing” me the chance to be involved. Not every church approves of that.