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Three Looks

[…]yourself sharp? What would you like God to do in the lives of your new superiors, chain of command, peers, and subordinates? What do you want to trust God for in this new role? As you enter each phase of your leadership journey, I encourage you to take these three looks. Look back on where you’ve been. You’ll be reminded that God was indeed acting as you led—and that He was preparing you for the next assignment on the dream sheet He wrote for your life. Look around at what you’re about to step into—go in with your eyes wide […]

TTP – Character

[…]USAF, retired), was commissioned from the Air Force Academy in 1976. He was an F-16 Squadron Commander and served in various staff assignments in NATO, the Pentagon and Air Combat Command. He retired in 2001. He and his wife, Johanna, have four daughters: Sarah, Katie, Rebecca, Emily. They have been actively involved in OCF and other military ministries since entering the […]

TTP – Competition

[…]roles and missions, to say nothing of the fight for budget dollars. Healthy competition is good and spurs us on to heights of success and excellence we would not reach striving individually. Yet we all know competition is too often taken to its extreme. How does the Christian leader achieve and promote healthy competition while maintaining an atmosphere that fits within the boundaries of “Love thy neighbor as thyself?” I learned a very useful technique for achieving this balance in Marine Corps Officer Candidate School. Early in the course, the staff sergeant in charge, our “Sergeant Instructor,” sat us down […]

TTP – Platoon Leader

[…]with your platoon without crossing some EO line or offending someone? How do you stand up for Christ without standing on someone’s foot? It is such a fine line to walk. I started with the language issue. I simply made it clear that foul language and coarse joking were unacceptable around me. Folks still slip up, but they know to watch how they speak to others. Then I focused on being a servant leader and letting my feet do the talking. I don’t waste my soldiers’ time. I pay attention to their problems. I train them hard and make sure […]

TTP – Vision and Leadership

[…]the mission requirements we may face. Our business affairs must be in order, our families informed and prepared, and our accounts set straight so that we can focus our energies on putting forth our best effort-anytime, anywhere, on a moment’s notice. Together, we can provide exceptional service and support to all customer agencies to ensure mission success for our unit, our customers, and our nation. We will do this by focusing on training and readiness, all with our basis of performance and behaviors coming from the core values of “Integrity First,” “Service Before Self,” and “Excellence In All We […]

Unity of Command

[…]for individual commanders to make decisions. This builds trust up and down the chain of command and produces freedom and flexibility throughout all of the force structures. Let’s apply this spiritually by looking at the Trinity and the Body of Christ. In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus stated that all authority was given to Him. He also said in the Gospels that He always obeyed the Father–doing nothing on His own account. In the next step down the chain of command, Jesus said He would send the Holy Spirit, who would guide His followers in all truth. He would not speak on […]

War on Spiritual Terrorism

[…]is moral, ethical, and spiritual strength. Most soldiers don’t pray. Most young leaders don’t pray. Not until they stand up to put that snap fastener on the anchor line cable do they start to try and get serious, because when they go out the door they know it’s them, that equipment, and the Lord. Or they don’t pray until they get a contingency mission. When they get to Green Ramp, suddenly the chaplain becomes the most important officer in the unit. They all want to see and talk to him… Most soldiers who fall into this category will enter into […]

What Right Looks Like

[…]second lieutenants assuming their roles as platoon leaders should listen to their platoon sergeant and first sergeant. They should not “reject the advice” of those who have served for many years and have much to offer. See What Right Looks Like Also important is the ability to see what right looks like. I’m reminded of John 10:32 as Jesus says to the Jews, “…I have shown you many great miracles from the Father…” Jesus Christ showed the entire world what right looks like. Through his daily walk with God, the example He set constantly, He showed exactly how we should […]

You Are Commissioned

[…]for certain: there will be crises. You will have short-notice deployments, training will be demanding, and if deployed in this war on terrorism, the pressures of mounting combat operations will be intense. You can expect to deal with the casualties of war. That is a part of being a leader and part of “exercising biblical leadership.” So, how prepared will you be to deal with crisis? Will you react under your own strength or will you call upon the Lord to carry you through His plan for your life for His purposes? You were called by God for a purpose […]

Professional Excellence (Durfey)

[…]reading letters from the Apostle Paul. As Christians, we have clear directives to serve, love, obey, and worship the Lord. Notice the acrostic formed from the first letter from each of these directives, “S-L-O-W.” One can gain much more from any experience if “extra” time can be taken. Food shared at the wardroom table with friends in conversation is much more of a meal; an inspection of the spaces interspersed with small talk with those who did the cleaning is much more productive. Commuting on a bike, one will see things never seen from a car. Leaders must force themselves […]

Professional Perspectives for Senior Officers

[…]your spouse GENESIS 2:24. (also quoted by Paul in Ephesians 5:31) Upon marriage, God looks at husband and wife as one flesh. This is the next most important relationship after their relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Marriage partners should continually reflect on the dimensions of: 1) leaving, 2) cleaving, and 3) being one flesh. This relationship needs constant attention in the demanding environment of senior leadership. EPHESLANS 5:21-33. How are we to love our spouses? This Scripture sets forth some of God’s primary commands for marital relationships, as follows: Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ (vs. […]
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Six Generations: 1

[…]memorized many passages of Scripture together and spent hours and hours in studying the Word and praying over it. We grew so very close. I am the godfather of his only child, a son he never knew. Joe was killed in a car accident four years after his graduation while getting his Masters Degree in Michigan. Joe had a broad testimony, but according to his wife, Gigi, I was the only one he ever invested his life into so intently and intentionally. My life was ignited by his love and investment…and it has never stopped. You know the rest.” The […]

Six Generations: 2

[…] said, “Hi Barry, I’m Jon.” Hesitating but happy and relieved, I raised his right hand and firmly grasped Jon’s and our eyes met and a bond was formed that day that only the few who have experienced it can comprehend. But that wasn’t the end of the Special Inspection. Jon then opened and held out his left hand, which had been grasping a dulled-silver dollar, a rather old vintage coin that held some significance to Jon. He explained its significance to me. Jon had received the silver dollar from a graduating cadet when he was a Plebe, at a […]

Six Generations: 3

[…]of the clear blue he wanted Jesus in his life. We called all the men around that were there and prayed with him. I thank God every day that He can use men all around us for His glory.” Indeed He can! God began this ministry of multiplication through generations of faithful men years ago, using Jon Shine as a powerful influence on many others along the way. We don’t always know how and why He works the way He does, but we can be assured that He is in control. He took Jon Shine from this earth, at age […]

Follow Me

[…]of this recognition, he starts every day with a time of quiet meditation over the scriptures and prayer, seeking the will of God and not the desires of men. Seek Jesus as a Role Model The third aspect of Jesus’ leadership style deals with the world’s idea of leadership. The world’s view on leadership today has not changed much since the days of Jesus. Many leaders in the world seek positions of leadership in order to exercise authority and esteem themselves as better than the people they are leading. These attitudes can be seen in how they interact with others […]

Leadership and the Christian Officer

[…]obstacles as challenges rather than a cause for apprehension. The commander must be able to understand and analyze problems, make firm decisions, give clear orders and then forcefully carry out their will despite difficulties. There must be that character which is willing to accept responsibility, to reason out problems, make decisions and then push them through to success. Possessing this basic trait of character, they must then prepare themselves intellectually to face the tasks which confront them. Loyalty To achieve the best results from subordinates, the commander must have their confidence and personal loyalty. One thing must be remembered-loyalty starts […]

Leadership by Example

[…]to train and then to adapt that expertise to new situations as we are doing in Afghanistan and Iraq, and they do it well, the best in the world I might add. And, if they do not, then, it goes without saying that the Army will not contribute militarily to subduing the insurgencies in those two locations. But it takes far more than tactical competence to fulfill your obligations as an officer. It takes, secondly, moral character of the highest sort in every commissioned leader, particularly as our Army fights the dirty battles of urban warfare as initiated by terrorists, […]

Leadership Excellence

[…]it are sometimes immense. While we tend to discount the toil, leadership remains yeoman’s work and demands absolute dedication, focused effort, and most importantly, great strength of character. Leaders must understand that the profession of arms is an altogether unique endeavor, a true “calling” and, in many ways, a spiritual undertaking. They must recognize the true nature of the enterprise, acknowledge the spiritual dimension of their service, and appreciate the motives and expectations of their subordinates. Service members are generally distinguished by their deep conviction and sense of duty, and by their confidence in the integrity of the organizations to […]

Financial Responsibility for Children

[…]altogether. At one base when we were homeschooling, our three daughters babysat during the day, and they were in high demand. Our son mowed lawns and did other work for people so he had a source of income as well. In college each one held jobs which paid for the luxuries of college life, and in their last two years of college they helped with their rent and food costs with that income. The Financial Manager When our oldest was a sophomore in high school we decided to take a Big step. We delegated the management of the family finances […]

Know Your Rights!

[…] We feel that it is honoring to the Lord to be as open as we can be about our finances and programs. If you have any questions, let me know. Visit office and program sites of an organization to talk personally with the staff. Please come visit us! It’s an absolute joy when people visit the Home Office. Give without being high-pressured by the organization. We like to use the “What Would Jesus Do?” principle. Jesus didn’t use high pressure, and neither will we. Know that the organization is well managed. The Lord has blessed OCF with a wonderful […]

Predicting the Future

[…]the above as a backdrop, a commentary on mankind reveals that people have always tried to replace random chaos with some type of order. Stated another way, most people do not like to take risks, and want to envision a secure future. Security is an attempt to replace the elements of the unknown with predictable outcomes. Hence, life insurance, or any insurance, is an ordering mechanism that tries to take the possibility of something unforeseen happening, and tries to predict an outcome that will keep us whole or stable. The Bible speaks to our nature in doing this. First, God’s […]

Spiritual Success

[…]church congregation, a Bible study, or para-church organization. Read the Bible and pray daily if possible. Do it like Physical Training. Find a prayer partner to get with every week. When you are given the opportunity to talk to your platoon/unit, tell them who you are and include in a matter of fact way that you are a Christian. Do not preach to them; you are not paid to do that. Just inform them of the “stuff” that helps you make decisions. Be physically fit and try to set the standard in military bearing and professionalism. Remember God will never […]

Strong to the Finish

[…]a time when God seems out of reach. Maybe your mind has raced to the worst possible conclusion and you are overcome by worry, disappointment, and fear. You may be at a point at which people are no longer allies but enemies as you fight to faithfully fulfill your responsibilities. Remember, God is at work in the midst of your struggles, helping you learn more about the love, strength, wisdom, and peace that only He can provide. Dan is the president of Encouragement FM, a former Christian camp director, and a past chair of the CCCA Board of Directors. This […]

Test Me!

[…]stewards of what God gives us.This includes not only our money, but also our possessions, and our time, and our health, and our career. Part of spiritual warfare is looking at all aspects of your life and seeing if God is in charge of each and every aspect. Is God in charge of your finances? If not, it’s time to “Test […]


[…]all we can do during that time is to groan in response to his burden upon our hearts. God understands and answers! Therefore, if we respond properly to God, nothing is impossible, because even when we don’t know how to tackle the problem in prayer, the Spirit along with us will take hold of the problem and it will be properly taken care of. Thus we become dearly beloved workers-together with God every step of the way. Difficult but triumphant is this life in Christ. Let us continue walking in the Spirit in the train of His […]

Ways to Give

[…]out of your bank account instead of your pay account. I have a form for you to fill out and send in along with a voided check so I can verify the bank routing number and your account number. Credit CardYet another option is to have your monthly contribution charged to your credit card. I also administer this personally at the beginning of each month. If you would like to contribute using your credit card, please contact me. Thank you very much for your support of and interest in the ministries of Officers’ Christian Fellowship. It is vital to the […]

We Know This Place Too Well

[…]who has been his counselor? Who has ever given to God, that God should repay him?’ For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen” (Romans 11:33-36). We know this place too well… Living in a State of Wonder When did we stop living in a state of wonder? Remember when we first got here for BCT, how we didn’t know where anything was and we were constantly surprised and we couldn’t wait for every last bite at Mitch’s? The surprises weren’t always good.  But there was mystery, excitement, apprehension, […]

What Works for New Officers?

[…]avoid controversial issues, and focus on simple truths for effective Christian living. Include prayer and praise. TIP: You can facilitate a study with those who are of higher rank than you. Just stay disciplined, and keep it professional (2 Tim 3:16, 17). 5. Set a GOOD EXAMPLE morally. Live in a way that is right. Treat people fairly, give respect to everyone, and listen to all ranks carefully. TIP: Improper language doesn’t cut it. What we say is what we are. Jesus talked about this in Matthew 12:34-37. Unless someone holds you accountable, you will pick up words you wish […]

Returning Home

[…]expecting their children to turn to the remaining spouse for permission, and letting the rules stand until mom and dad have a chance to calmly renegotiate. If a couple has been actively and regularly communicating concern and support, they may discover they have a stronger marriage when they are brought together again. These couples may wish to renew their wedding vows–or at least re-dedicate themselves to one other–in an intentional act of commitment to each other and to God. Their home church can be a supportive part of that celebration. The adjustments families need to make can be improved by […]

Situational Awareness

[…]with information regarding your unique situation. My prayer is that this will expand your understanding and increase your effectiveness as military leaders, spouses, and ambassadors for Christ. Others may want to read along to increase their knowledge of this gap.The Gap Described Culturally you are a pivotal element in our society. By chance of birth you live in the gap between the modern and post-modern eras. The modern era existed from 1500 a.d. until about the time you were born. The industrial age reigned supreme. Truth was determined by the scientific method. Life consisted of laboratory-like certainties. Biblical laws were […]

Spiritual Battle Plans

[…]and Supplication (ACTS). Also, make your prayer list realistic: split it into multiple parts and pray over one section per day. Ask God questions about your military leadership and everything on your heart; it reminds us to listen. When He answers it enables us to see His relevance in the practical aspects of our life. Journaling Capture God’s answers to prayer and His revelations of truth (Proverbs 29:18). This is how we actively listen, pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17), grow, and demonstrate to God that we can be trusted as faithful stewards of His insights. Additional, Intentional Steps toward […]
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