SLAP PACK

This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.Psalm 34:6 

So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me.Hebrews 13:6 

 

When I was going through the corrections academy for Idaho in 1989, we were shown some of what the line officers were using for protection. Simple things like key keepers with a leather flap to keep your pants from getting pulleys in the fabric from the keys rubbing on them, to something called a “slap pack”. 

The slap pack was a piece of equipment that the state had just brought in to be used by officers in case of emergency. It was attached to the duty belt and it had a button you could push (slap – hence the name “slap pack”) which would send an alarm to central control letting them know you were in trouble. 

There was also a feature that would send out the alarm if the officer were knocked out or laid out on the floor (because the pack was laying horizontal). That sensor not only sent an alert to control but also had an ear-splitting alarm – or so the instructors told us. 

Come demonstration time, one of the instructors, telling all of us trainees, that if anything should happen to us and we were flat on the floor, then this would happen and other C.O.’s would come on the run! With a great flourish he laid down, and we waited. 

And waited (now there were some nervous smiles from the instructors). 

And waited (giggles and snorts from the crowd). 

And waited (now the trainees were beginning to laugh out loud). 

Finally, the instructor got up off of the floor, with everyone laughing and making remarks about the pack (“Oh yeah, I’m going to trust my life to that!” “Maybe it’s a silent alarm?”), and he started blaming the lack of an alarm on old batteries and, “well it worked a few minutes ago!” 

The department did use them, but, from what many of my fellow officers said, no one really trusted them to work when they were needed. Consequently, the packs were often left in the office and the officers relied on their radios for emergencies. 

Isn’t it good to know that all we have to do is cry out to the Lord and He will be there? We can trust Him to respond to His children when they cry out in despair, depression, or in pain.  

“He is always there, hearing every prayer, faithful and true. 

Walking by our side, in His love we hide, all the day through. 

When you get discouraged just remember what to do, 

Reach out to Jesus, He’s reaching out to you” 

(Ralph Carmichael “Reach Out to Jesus”) 

 

Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Isaiah 55:6 


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