Surrounded on All Sides

Lt. Michael P. Murphy

Lieutenant Michael P. “Murph” Murphy graduated from Penn State with two degrees—political science and psychology. Although accepted to law school, he accepted an appointment to the Navy’s Officer Candidate School at Pensacola, Fla.

Murph began Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL training in 2001. Upon graduation, he attended the Army Jump School, SEAL Qualification Training, and SEAL Delivery Vehicle school.

“Our heart has not turned back, nor have our steps departed from your way.” —Psalm 44:18

After several deployments around the world, in 2005 Murph was sent to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

SEALs prior to Operation Red Wings (L to R): Matthew Axelson, Daniel R. Healy, James Suh, Marcus Luttrell, Eric S. Patton, Michael P. Murphy
SEALs prior to Operation Red Wings (L to R): Matthew Axelson, Daniel R. Healy, James Suh, Marcus Luttrell, Eric S. Patton, Michael P. Murphy

He was one of a four-man SEAL team called Operation Red Wings. A fierce gun battle ensued on the face of a mountain with a Taliban force. Murph moved into the open to gain a better position to transmit a distress call, exposing himself to enemy gunfire.

He provided his unit’s location and the size of the enemy force. At one point he was shot in the back, causing him to drop the transmitter. He picked it up, completed the call, and continued firing at the enemy who was now closing in.

Severely wounded, Murph returned to his cover position with his men and fought on. By the end of the two-hour battle, Murph and two others of the four were dead. An estimated 35 Taliban were also killed.  Murphy was 29.

Would Michael Murphy have ever been hailed a hero in American history had he chosen to be a lawyer? Possibly, but not likely.

We each have many sides to who we are. We must take what God has placed in us and develop it to the fullest potential. But He is always right there, guiding, helping, leading—right to the end.

HOLY FATHER, though there are so many things I want to accomplish, I have but one life. Guide me to make it the life You desired when You created me.

A daily devotion fromstrength for service

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