Don’t tell Army veteran and country music star Craig Morgan that you can’t go home again.
Late last month, the Tennessee singer-songwriter was sworn into the U.S. Army before a sold-out performance at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville.
Morgan, 59, previously served with the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions beginning at the age of 18. His first enlistment lasted nine-and-a-half years of active duty and another six-and-a-half-years in the reserves. Part of his duties included the invasion of Panama in 1989.
“I realized that there’s so much that I’ve missed — the friends, the feeling of the sense of accomplishment,” Morgan said. “I realized that I’ve missed it so much and I truly believe that I still have more to give.”
Fans of the country music performer might remember his heartbreaking song, “My Father, My Son and the Holy Ghost,” music borne out of the pain and anguish of losing his son in a drowning accident in 2016. He and his wife had adopted Jerry when he was just two.
“My wife and I are very fortunate that we have so much faith that we do believe that God did not do this,” he reflected. “We do understand and appreciate and respect that God didn’t stop it, but he didn’t do it. And there’s a reason for that.
“It doesn’t change the heartache. My pain is real,” he said. “Every day when I wake up, I still think about it, and I will forever have that scar on my life. And it will hurt until the day I get to see him again.”
Writing the music was therapeutic for Morgan, who debuted the song at the Grand Ole Opry in 2019. He told Country Music Television (CMT) that, “The song is 100 percent about my faith and confidence in Christ.”
“I cried and cried and cried,” he sang. “Until I passed out on the floor. Then I prayed and prayed and prayed, Till I thought I couldn’t pray anymore. And minute by minute, day by day, My God, He gave me hope. I know my boy ain’t here, but he ain’t gone.”
There’s good reason so many Christians resonate and appreciate country music, which so often unabashedly, unashamedly, and unapologetically professes love of both God and country.
Given the singer’s age, the Army had to make an exception, but did so out of an appreciation for Morgan’s commitment – and the hope that his example will inspire more people to join the military.
“No matter who you are or where you’re from, service in the United States Army is a unique, life-changing honor,” said Gen. Andrew Poppas, commander, U.S. Army Forces Command. “Every Soldier who enters the Army has the opportunity to become the best version of themselves, and Staff Sgt. Morgan is no exception. I look forward to seeing what he accomplishes and how he impacts other Soldiers around the Army.”
We might also add: we look forward to seeing how the Lord is going to use Craig Morgan’s new mission field to bring honor and glory to Him and minister to those whose paths he will cross.
Photo Credit: Screenshot of a livestream from the Nashville concert