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Chad Williams is a former Navy SEAL, having served his country proudly from 2004 to 2010. Now engaged in full-time ministry work, Chad uses the training and experience he gained as a SEAL to help communicate the gospel to others. Chad and his wife, Aubrey, live in Huntington Beach, California.
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I have never doubted that Navy SEAL training was hard, but reading Chad Williams's blow-by-blow account of his life as a SEAL convinces me that those guys are tough! SEAL of God follows Williams' journey from rebellious kid to dedicated recruit to exemplary SEAL, and, ultimately, to a follower of Jesus and enthusiastic evangelist.
Williams was a good candidate for not making it as a SEAL. He was more concerned with partying than sticking with anything, especially anything as difficult as SEAL training. Under the guidance of former SEAL Scott Helvenston, Williams prepared physically and mentally. He never thought of quitting. Even though only 13 of his class of 173 became SEALs, Williams made it, thinking of his training as a prison from which he could only escape by graduating as a SEAL.
Part of his motivation was to avenge Helvenston's death. Helvenston was one of the Blackwater contractors who was ambushed in Iraq, dragged through the streets, mutilated, and hung from a bridge. Seeing those images on TV gave Williams the fuel to drive his commitment. However, after graduating from SEAL training, Williams gave his life to Christ. His driving passion now was not revenge but following Jesus. He began to have doubts about whether the SEAL lifestyle was for him.
The bulk of the book, about two thirds, deals with Williams's life before and during SEAL training. I haven't read much about the SEALs, but Williams's detailed descriptions of the grueling, intense training gives a great picture of what someone has to go through to be a SEAL. The most disturbing portion was Williams's account of the persecution he endured as a result of his being a Christian.Read more ›
Seal of God--The Path Is Narrow...But the Reward Is Great A Memoir Chad Williams with David Thomas Forward by Greg Laurie 284 pages Tyndale Publishers
I'm not in the military. I didn't think I would really have much to relate to with this book. I was wrong. This is the story of a young man who is naturally gifted athletically. He achieves levels others only dream of and then gets bored--seeking the next thrill, the next bit of excitement. He frustrates his father by never sticking with anything. Here's where I began to relate.
Chad winds up making a connection with a retired Navy Seal that changes the course and shape of his life forever. The story of his determined preparation and the relationship he has with his mentor is quite encouraging to me, both from the perspective of one who only dreams of being that determined and wishing I had that kind of mentor.
The tragic loss of his mentor in a brutally horrible attack in Iraq serves to amp Chad's desire to be a Navy Seal. Reading through the grueling process of preparation made me feel like such a marshmallow, but also served to motivate me to start moving. I was about to cheer out loud when he finally completed the training.
That accomplishment, great as it was, only served as the vehicle for the real change and achievement in Chad's life. The real story within the story is how he came to faith, how he grew, how that faith was challenged while he was a Seal, and then provided the opportunity for him to take that same level of determination and turn it into full-time ministry.
I'm excited to share about this book here, but I had no sooner finished reading it when I began to think of the people in my life with whom I wanted to share a copy.Read more ›
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I love this book. I read it in less than 24 hours and I was glued to it from beginning to end. Seal of God is the story of Chad William's life. He grew up skating for Vans, surfing, sport fishing, and getting in trouble on the West Coast. He didn't want anything to do with God and he wanted to make a name for himself. So he decided he wanted to go into the Navy SEALs. Pretty big decision. Reading about all of his SEAL training was riveting. I didn't really know anything about BUD/S (Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL) before I read this book, but I feel well informed now. It is grueling and will either make or break you. The book is worth it just for this part. Chad made it through and became a part of SEAL Team 1. I thought it was interesting how he still didn't feel fulfilled when he made it there. The fulfillment that he had been pursuing couldn't even be found at the top of the ladder. He began to lead a more and more reckless life. He would party, fight, get in trouble with the law, speed, and drink. Until one night, when he went to church with his parents for completely selfish motives. His parents were about to kick him out of the house, but Chad went to church so he could stay one more night at his house and retrieve his keg from the garage. Little did he know, that God would change his life that night. Chad became saved that night and his life turned around completely. The rest of the book details his life as a Christian among the SEALs, and how he wanted to enter full-time ministry. He completed his tour of duty with the SEALs before he entered the ministry. This is a great testimony and an exciting book about the life of a SEAL. I would recommend this to anyone!
I received this book for free from Tyndale House Publishers in exchange for a fair and honest review.