Our Nation lost a great American and a National treasure when Muhammad Ali died on June 3, 2016. His fans called him “The Greatest”, usually speaking of his boxing prowess. I argue that he was also the “Greatest” when it came to his humanity and his love and concern for his fellow man. He was a role model that we should all strive to be like.
It is important to acknowledge all aspects of the man known as Muhammad Ali, and not just his ability to box. Ali started his boxing career at the age of 12 in Louisville, KY, and continued to his retirement in 1981. He had 56 winds (37 by knock out) and 5 losses. He became the heavyweight champion of the world on 3 separate occasions. He won a gold medal is the 1960 Olympics. He surely could “float like a butterfly and sting like a
On Monday, May 30 we as a Nation celebrated Memorial Day. It is a day in which some of us (but unfortunately not very many) took the time to remember the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. To date, over 1.2 Million American men and women have died protecting our freedoms and our way of life. Freedom isn’t free. I like to remind folks of the phrase “Land of the free, because of the brave.”
I am convinced that everyday should be Memorial Day. Everyday we should take the time to reflect on those who paid the ultimate sacrifice. Honor their memories, and pray for their Families. For the survivors, their loss is as painful today as it was the day of the tragedy. Don’t think they forgot. We shouldn’t either.
Do something to ensure future generations understand the cost of freedom. Take your children to visit
This past week our daughter Susan gave birth to our first granddaughter, Piper Ann. Sarah and I have now been blessed with three grandchildren. JW is 3, Rex is 9 months, and now we have Piper.
The entire week I have been thinking about the joy of being a grandparent. It has been said that if we knew being a grandparent was so much fun, we would have had the grandkids first.
It would be easy for me to postpone my joy. With all the things that I have going on right now, it would be easy to simply wait until “tomorrow” to enjoy the time with my grandkids. The problem with that is there might not be a tomorrow.
We should all make it a point to never postpone our joy. Take the time today to enjoy the moment, to cherish the experience.
Simon and Garfunkel had a song many years ago,
I am a fan of county and western music. I find that sometimes the lyrics of the songs provide “lessons in life”. Tim McGraw’s new song “Humble and Kind” really tells us how we should be living our lives. Here are some of the lyrics:
Hold the door, say please, say thank you
Don't steal, don't cheat, and don't lie
I know you got mountains to climb but
Always stay humble and kind
When the dreams you're dreamin' come to you
When the work you put in is realized
Let yourself feel the pride but
Always stay humble and kind
Every day of our lives we should strive to be humble and kind. Imagine what a wonderful world it would be if everyone would do just that. If you think about it, it really isn’t that hard. It just involves making a conscious decision to live our lives that way.
It is imperative that we teach our children to
It is amazing to me how much intellectual energy we as a Nation are spending on debating whether or not women should be in combat. They already are. They are performing mission essential functions across today’s battlefield. They are medics, intelligence analysts, logisticians and many other things. They are absolutely essential to everything the US Military does.
The idea that we should open all branches of the military to women makes no sense. They already fight side by side with infantrymen, tankers, etc. They are already merged. Why do they actually need to be part of that branch? We are a combined arms team. Each branch of the service has a specific function. They train to be able to perform that function, and then commanders synchronize their different capabilities on the field of battle.
We have seen female warriors throughout history, starting back in ancient times. The Bible is full of
Many times throughout my military career I was confronted with situations where I didn’t have adequate resources (people, time, or money) to accomplish the mission at hand. I had a choice. I could either throw up my hands and give up, or turn to God and ask him to be with me and for the strength to be able to accomplish the task with the resources available. I chose the latter option.
Gideon had the same situation as outlined in the Book of Judges. God came to Gideon and gave him the mission of leading the Israelites against the Medianites, a seemingly insurmountable task given resources available. Gideon’s first response, much like Moses, was highlighting his limitations. But Lord, Gideon asked, how can I save Israel? My clan is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least in my family. The Lord answered, I will be with you, and
We all need help. We need strength, courage to do the things that need to be done on a daily basis. There are many sources for that strength and courage. I get mine from my relationship with God. In Joshua 1:9 it is written Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go
Knowing that God is with us wherever we go is an amazing source of strength. Many times throughout my military career I was tasked to perform something that was very dangerous, but I could do it without fear knowing that God would be with me.
During Desert Shield and Desert Storm, I was the Executive Officer of a Cavalry Regiment. We were stationed in Doha, Kuwait and were the last American presence in Kuwait. Everyone else had returned
So we’ve entered another year. Some of us are anxious. Some of us are afraid. Some of us are overwhelmed with the prospect of all that needs to be done in 2016. What will 2016 have in store for us?
I believe if we turn to Scripture God has given us the insights we need to make 2016 a wonderful year. I find myself turning to four scripture verses as I think about 2016. I would like to share them with you.
I believe that God has a plan. Refer to James 4:13-15: Now listen, you who say “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money. Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say
Everyone has limitations, but we cannot let those limitations determine who we are. The key is being self-aware. I am convinced that the most important piece of furniture in our homes is our mirror. We should routinely look in the mirror and do an honest self assessment to determine what are our strengths, and what are our weaknesses and limitations. We should aggressively pursue candid feedback from our peers, our colleagues, our bosses, and our subordinates. This is termed a 360 assessment.
Once we are aware of our limitations, we have many ways to work thru those. One way is to get some additional education or experience that will allow us to improve those weaknesses. We should always be looking for ways to improve ourselves.
Another way is to surround yourself with folks who have strengths in those areas where you fall short. Allow them to compensate for your limitations.
On this Christmas Day let’s think about the true meaning of Christmas. Sure, we’ll open our presents and enjoy a wonderful meal. We will marvel at the beautiful Christmas decorations. We will have a wonderful time with Family and friends. That’s all great.
Let’s just carve out time on Christmas day to pause and reflect on the wonders of the day. John 3:16 says it best: “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”.
That is the ultimate “gift” and the ultimate sacrifice. We can rest assured knowing that God has a place for us in Heaven and we can take great comfort knowing that our sins have been forgiven.
Let’s think about that gift, and what it means to all of us. And…let’s commit to sharing that gift with folks God puts