Posts Tagged ‘Military’

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As I sit here in this Memorial Day and enjoy the sun and the peace, I am reminded of everyone who paid the ultimate price, their lives, so that I can enjoy this very moment. That commitment to country, and the knowledge that death may come as well, is recognized by our military men and women everyday and I for one thank them for what they do for all of us. They understand that being in “harm’s way” is a part of the job and the requirement of a United States soldier.

This week I fly back to Ohio and watch my own brother “pin on” as a USAF Colonel and then see him deploy for a year inside the Persian Gulf. He is going into a dangerous country, and into harms way because that is where they need him. Even though the Persian Gulf  is not his first choice, he will go there because that is where HIS duty and his country call him. Personally, I will miss him, yet I know both he and I will trust in God to bring him home safely.

As I have said many times on this blog, I do not understand why things happen the way they do in this world and if I just took things at face value, I would be bitter and confused. But instead, I choose to look at things differently. I understand that man is doing his thing on Earth while God watches intently and inserts Himself into our lives constantly. Sometimes we see His hand and sometimes we have no idea He was there. What we do know is He is continuously working because Gods word tells us that He is. If you were to ask me why some soldiers come home from battle and others don’t, I could not tell you why. But I do know this; God is not like you and me. He does not think like us, nor act like us. In fact, He tells us that specifically in Psalms 50:21:

 When you did these things and I kept silent, you thought I was exactly like you….

Instead of trying to ask the questions like “WHY” something happened, we should simply be trusting in Him completely to take care of our loved ones, even though they are in danger…God knows and God cares. He may not handle the situation exactly like we want (in fact, I can guarantee you He won’t handle it the way you would) but I do know that ultimately, He has yours, and your loved ones, best interests in His heart.

Remember the Bible tells us in Proverbs 3:5-6:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your paths.

America is a country of grit and determination and yet it was founded on the principles I have stated above…so on this day as we remember the many Patriotic Americans that have fallen in service of this great country for all of us, let us remember to trust our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who gave the ultimate sacrifice for all of us…so that we could remember and would remember…

Thank you service men and women for all the great sacrifices you have all made in order for me to enjoy where I am right here and right now…

In God we trust…

God Bless America…

Until next time guys…

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I was speaking with a good friend of mine recently who has a son in the military and he told me of an encounter his son had with one of his superior officers at their base. He told him about how this officer was “talking him up” on the phone to another high-ranking officer in the army who was looking for quality men for his Army Ranger unit. (You see, my friend’s son is one of those young men who will ultimately be the man in charge of whatever he undertakes, no matter what level.) So as he entered the office of his commander, he called my friend’s son over to speak with this man on the phone. What I found interesting was this military officer’s line of questioning…He asked him only 2 questions…


1. Have you ever cheated on your wife?


2. Have you ever been too drunk to go on a mission?

This man had never met my friend’s son but these questions were the reasons why this Ranger Commander had fired previous leaders and he wanted to gain a quick glance of the kind of man he was speaking with. As a result, rather than ask him questions like ” what are your personal goals” or “how long have you been in the army” he chose a direct approach, or as I call it, “the integrity approach”. You see, as I further spoke with my friend, he explained to me that time has proven to the men in the higher ranks of the military that real leadership starts with integrity and commitment, character traits that reside inside the man. Men that are honest, driven, hard-working, and possess the “never quit” and “never say die” attitude and yet still come home to the same wife do make better leaders in combat than ones who don’t take those characteristics seriously. Please don’t get me wrong, the military has a very comprehensive scoring system that measures many things such as how well you can shoot, how fast you run, how smart you are and even predict how you might act in a particular situation…but how do you measure integrity or honor or virtue? You really can’t, so you have to try to understand what is at the core of a person, what they believe in, are they faithful to their wife or do they cheat on her and do they have sense enough to stay sober and NOT miss an important mission…all of which live inside a man…

As I shared with my friend, I think all of us could have predicted that fact about military leadership because even in our regular, “non-military” lives, integrity, loyalty, honor and commitment are also critical and frankly, are the traits that founded this country from the beginning. Moreover, these character traits are Bible based, since the dawn of creation, men that followed their internal moral compass were more successful in more phases of life that those who went their own way. J. Oswald Sanders said ” Leadership is influence” and if you are a follower of Jesus Christ, then you recognize that you are called to influence others. What I find interesting is that it took this particular set of military leaders this long to understand that men who posses these influential qualities and have a “Christ centered core” inside of them make better leaders on the battle field or for that matter, anywhere else than ones who do not.

I have never served in the military but I have been in situations where I was required to follow both great as well as poor leadership over the years. John Maxwell, an expert on leadership, said that “the measure of a man is how he handles power” and I can say that if my life was on the line, God forbid that I had to follow someone I didn’t respect. Most assuredly, I would want to follow someone I trusted because of their core principles, who they were and what they stood for…because all of those virtues frankly, would matter the most on the battlefield …because that is leadership that can be measured when it counts the most…what do you when your life, along with the lives of your men, are in harm’s way? You trust in God, because through Him, you and me, understand who we are, what got us here and what will get us out…

Guys…it is encouraging to see our military leaders look at what’s inside the heart along with their score before they make up their minds as to who is in positions of leadership in our country’s military…

Until next time guys…

Hey Guys-

Its very easy to get caught up in this festive time of year and forget that there are people out there who are hurting and need someone to give them a kind word or simply a helping hand. Then of course, there are the men and women who serve us in the military and as policemen, highway patrol and state troopers, who find themselves stationed far away or working on Christmas Eve and other holidays when they certainly would rather be with their own families. I came across this video recently that shows Bob Welsh, a retired state trooper, recounting some of his experiences on Christmas Eve. I found his story very moving and wanted share it with you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did…

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all you guys…