Monday, November 10, 2008

Salute To Veterans Week - Leaders Don't Hesitate

This is a week I would like to spend some time Celebrating the Military Veterans and a big thank you!

For those of you with military experience may have had some of these experiences. I have a minister in our organization that was in the National Guard for about 15-years. She is 5' 3" and one of the "baddest Sargents" they had. She entered the military at a time when most African American women from this area did not. I love to hear the stories of her military experiences. Her medical training and driving a duce and a half fully operational medical clinic, which came in handy when deployed during the many snow blizzards in Buffalo, New York. But today, I want to take you on a journey when she had been selected for Officers Training School.

Running the obstacle course she was fast and accurate. She was competing with men much taller and stronger, but she held her own. She was coming down the wall and headed towards a 2x4 piece of wood that stretched across a deep gully. Leaders were not supposed to have any hesitation--in anything. Approaching the small board, she hesitated., a split second thought of her fear of heights. The sargent called her over and said, "Worthey, you've got great skills, leadership ability, and you hesitated. I saw it. Now go back and do it again." She did. He later explained why gettting over the 2x4 without hestiation was so important.

She further explained to me that leaders who hesitate on the battlefield sometimes end up in "friendly fire" because one person can mean the difference between everybody getting killed or making it out a extreme danger alive. It made me think of the corporate boardrooms I have been in, as well as other leadership roles and venues. And the ones that were easy to follow and those I had to move away from.

Currently she is a corporate trainer for an international corporation. And our ministry's International Director of Youth Development and Biblical Financial Literacy Programs, and board member. We have been doing ministry together for almost 15-years and I cannot tell you how valuable her experiences have been in our development. The military trained her in skills that continually serve the world for the glory of God.

As a leader in the military you cannot show any hesitation. You are responsible for the men and women under your command. If they see any weakness in you, means their life is in danger. What an imporant lesson we could all learn from that as we go throughour life experiences.

As parents, corporate leaders, and mnisters--do we flinch and show hesitation in the important decisions. Do those under us sense our fear or hesitation? How do they respond? Have you taken inventory of it until now?

Our journey and thought today is that everybody is a leader because somebody is watching you and your reactions--you lead somebody somewhere whether you know it or not. Do you hesitate or move boldly in your decisions after careful consideration? Where in your experiences do you still have a deep gully with a 2x4 as the route across?

To all the men and women who are currently serving in the military, and to all of those who have proudly worn the uniforms of their country we add our biggest THANK YOU. Without you we would not be blogging and having the right to write our hearts thoughts on the pads of cyberspace, printing them in newspapers, and speaking them on the street.

Let us never forget that those who help keep us free, are the ones allowing us to blog--many of our counterparts in other countries are killed or imprisoned for the freedom we have to speak.

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