Chad Robichaux, former Force Recon Marine and author, knows a thing or two about being obedient and doing what’s right. We all face tough decisions in life and wonder what to do when you can’t make a decision. Through his military career and beyond, Chad Robichaux has learned that when you aren’t sure what to do and you don’t feel equipped, do the right thing anyway.
I’ve faced a similar decision in my own life. For a couple of months, I had this burning inside of me to start my own company, leave my full-time job and become my own boss. No matter what I did, I couldn’t shake it. I prayed about it. I fought with it. I denied it. But I ended up at the same conclusion every time: This is what I am supposed to do.
It didn’t make sense, though. I had a good job with benefits, while my wife had her own company with revenue that ebbed and flowed. I had the safe job; she had the high-risk, high-reward one. Certainly, we couldn’t both run risky startups, right?
The answer is actually “right.”
Now, in the natural world, the “real” world and the smart world, the answer is “wrong.” It was too much risk. And yet, and this is the point of this entire post: A lot of times, God calls us to do things that just don’t make sense.
Obedience in the Bible often looks like following God when it doesn’t make sense. We can’t see how things will work out, how they are a good idea. But he does. It’s because God is not bound by our limitations. He sees things we don’t – things we can’t. And in the end, his plan always works out.
The same is true in Chad Robichaux’s story. You may remember Chad from his first film in 2016, where he talked about battling depression, anxiety and PTSD so badly that he nearly took his life. It was at this low point that God stepped in and rescued him in divine ways. In Chad Robichaux’s new “Second Edition” I Am Second film, he states, “There were a lot of steps in my own recovery, but probably the most profound thing was the restoration of my faith.”
With this renewed faith, Chad was able to take steps forward in obedience to the burden God had placed on his heart. He describes how God gave him an assignment that didn’t make sense. Impossible, even. Chad was called to take action as the United States was getting ready to abruptly pull all of its forces out of Afghanistan in 2021. The hasty exit meant that numerous people who had helped American forces during the war on terror were at risk of being left behind as the Taliban closed in. One of those people was Chad’s interpreter, Aziz and his family.
“I could say three tangible times that he [Aziz] saved my life. But I would say he saved my life every single day,” Chad says in the new film, before adding, “There’s probably one or two people in the world that I would cash in everything precious to me for. And Aziz, he’s one of them.”
Thus began the Chad Robichaux Afghanistan rescue mission - an act of obedience in the face of uncertainty. It had been years since Chad had gone on a mission. He wasn’t in fighting shape. He was out of practice. He was just one man. Enter God.
“I started calling some friends I knew I could really trust, and I ended up with about 12 people from the special operations community on my team,” he explains.
Chad saving Aziz started when God burdened his heart. He felt unequipped and unsure where to even begin, but by beginning with obedience, like the examples of obedience in the Bible, Chad started a rescue mission that God would miraculously finish and multiply. Sacrificing the need to know it all allowed God to accomplish his will and help people through Robichaux’s obedience.
“We kind of paused for a second and said, ‘If we’re gonna go do this, let’s get as many qualified people as we can out, let’s get as many of these interpreters, let’s get as many of their families, let’s get as many Christians that’d be persecuted,’” Robichaux described of their rescue plans.
“From that moment and that decision on, I can’t explain it any other way than that I’ve seen a miraculous work of God and in such a divine way that [he] orchestrated things that are not humanly possible,” remembers Robichaux.
What happened from there is something I like to call “God math.” In short, God math is the idea that when we can’t make sense of something, God can. When we can’t see how 2+2 = 5, he’s the unseen +1 that’s always been there.
God math can take five loaves of bread and two fish and feed 5,000 people. It’s what can take an Israeli virgin and use her to birth the savior of the world. It’s what can take a universe devoid of time and space and create life. It’s what can take a retired, 46-year-old former special forces soldier and use him to save not just an interpreter, but thousands upon thousands of others.
Chad Robichaux saving Aziz was always meant to be used for more. God is always faithful to take what we give him – our time, resources, obedience – and multiply it for the good of everyone. When God looks for biblical obedience, he’s not looking for someone who has it all together or that can do it alone; he’s looking for a willing heart that has the faith to trust him in the middle of fear and confusion.
We learned that as a family through my job situation and what God was calling me to, and it worked out for us. We’re in a much better place as a couple and as a family now because of following God's lead. In fact, it’s led us to a foundational family phrase: “Just because God’s called us to it doesn’t mean it won’t require faith.”
In other words, God can call us to some things that are confusing, and we have to trust him. We have to obey. Faith and obedience go hand-in-hand. We had to have faith that having biblical obedience to do what he told us would work out like he said and that even if it doesn’t completely add up to us, it does to him.
Friends, that’s God math.
And it always adds up.