With a holstered pistol, a rifle in the car, a bulletproof vest and a daily route through the mean streets of our communities, police officers have one of the most dangerous jobs in the country. And though cops work a perilous ten- to twelve-hour shift four days a week, the real peril starts when they finish.
“Their stress does not turn off when they punch the clock and go home,” says Ernie Servin, police sergeant and leader of the Rock’s Cops4Christ ministry. “They bring it home to their families and there, it usually wreaks havoc.”
Cops are the first to arrive on the scene when babies die, wives are battered, drug addicts perish in the streets or when accidents kill or maim citizens. Not even the most hardened officers get away unscathed. Nearly all cops experience some form of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Approximately 300 American cops take their own lives annually—almost twice the number who die in the line of duty. Add to that decreasing salaries and waves of temptation that would shake the most ardent rule-follower and it is easy to see why the stress-levels are almost too much to bear.
Servin reports that 90% of all the cops he knows have been divorced or havegone through serious marital problems. “With extraordinary stress levels and the misery that comes with shift work, these guys and their wives and families are hurting so badly that healthy relationships are nearly impossible,” he says. “As God’s people, we simply must reach out to our cops.”
Cops4Christ’s monthly meeting offers prayer, worship, a speaker and a time of open discussion to let guys talk about all that is heavy on their hearts. They also hold Prayer and Worship events at police facilities where they sing and offer prayer for the men and women who patrol our streets.
Adds Servin, “They’re there in our time of need. Now we need to be there for them.”
For more information about the Law Enforcement Fellowship Ministry, click here »