Broken Arrow!

By February 14, 2015Christianity

On November 14th 1965, Lt. Col. Hal Moore and his devastated air cavalry unit of less than four hundred men are surrounded in the la Drang Valley, “valley of death,” in Vietnam by four thousand North Vietnamese soldiers under the command of the legendary General, Nguyen Huu An. Bloodied, outnumbered, with no options left, and at the desperate point of being overrun by the enemy, Moore orders 1st Lt. Charlie Hastings, his Forward Air Controller, to call in “Broken Arrow.” In the 1992 movie We were Soldiers, the true story depiction of the first major battle in Vietnam by American forces, the cry over the radio captures the desperation and agony of the moment, “Broken arrow!…Broken arrow. I say again, broken arrow! Broken arrow!…Confirmed broken arrow!”[1]

Broken Arrow is a code word in the military used to request close air support from all available aircraft when a ground position is in extreme danger of being overrun by enemy troops. It means to “direct all fire on my position; I can’t sustain my position!”[2] It is a last resort cry for help from air support.

Have you ever been so desperate in your life, spiritually and emotionally? I have. Over the past eight months my whole life has become a “broken arrow.” Daily I have cried out to God for spiritual air support for my tenable desperate broken position. I recognize this cry from the sons of Korah, “My tears have been my food day and night, while they continually say to me, ‘Where is your God?’…I pour out my soul within me.” (Psalm 42:3~4)

God hears our cry, “Broken Arrow! Broken Arrow! Broken Arrow,” when we are in hopeless and despairing circumstances. The Lord hears, and even loves our cries to him in such times of deep-seated agony. We must join with the sons of Korah, in the same Psalm, who preach to their souls,

Why are you cast down, O my soul,

and why are you in turmoil within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

my salvation and my God. [3]

We cry out to God in our despair. We share our heart with God through making a choice to rejoice, an act of faith, in the midst of the worst of times. Our salvation is from him and he is ready to direct his firepower into your life and sustain your position even as you stand. Cry out “Broken Arrow,” and watch what God will do.

On the Road,


[1] We Were Soldiers is a 2002 war film that dramatizes the Battle of Ia Drang on November 14, 1965. The film was directed by Randall Wallace and stars Mel Gibson. It is based on the book We Were Soldiers Once… And Young by Lieutenant General (Ret.) Hal Moore and reporter Joseph L. Galloway, both of whom were at the battle.


[2] This word “Broken Arrow,” was last used in Operation Iraqi Freedom in April 2007.

[3] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. 2001 (Ps 42:11). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.