Reviewing Your Day’s Marble = Self-Improvement: Part 2 (LwL #22)

Several times, I would not find a turnover folder prepared by my predecessor and thus would not know the expectations of my assigned duties, who to contact for help, what reports were required and their due dates,, etc. Thus, I was navigating blindly, hoping that I would have a “grace period” to read more…

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Reviewing Your Day’s Marble = Self-Improvement: Part 1 (LwL #21)

Yehundi Menuhin, a classical violinist, said, “Only satisfaction and lack of desire will limit your improvement and ultimate perfection.” From my perspective, this quote defines what a professional is—one who conducts an after action review (AAR) to assess how his or her day, project, or even life read more…

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Worldview Determines Leadership Style (LwL #20)

You might think that discussing the topic of worldview to be completely disconnected from that of leadership. However, I believe that if a leader describes his or her worldview, then one quickly will be able to determine what type of leader he or she is.

Chris Lowney wrote in his book Heroic Leadership, read more…

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Gain and Maintain Balance: Part 2 (LwL #19)

Another point to remember is that even though you are a key member of your organization, you are not indispensable. If you were to become sick for an extended period of time, your team very likely would discover how to get things done in your absence.

After Jenny and Danny’s deaths, the Marine Corps read more…

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Gain and Maintain Balance: Part 1 (LwL #18)

During my formative years as a young Marine Corps officer, I observed many leaders who were workaholics. Since they were successful, I assumed that I must do the same to be recognized with promotions and medals.

During my journey, I had a few—and emphasize few—leaders who cared about me as an read more…

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Remember. Remember. Remember. (LwL #17)

Remember is a powerful word. You may recall a significant date in your life by reflecting on where you were and what you were doing. A few of you may remember where you were when you heard about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. More will remember where you were on November 22, read more…

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Which Style Will You Emulate? (LwL #16)

In an ancient book of wisdom, two stories detail two different styles of leadership demonstrated by two kings. Studying these two kings, it becomes evident that each led his kingdom differently. If you go back to the first recorded details of their lives, you quickly see that each king’s style of leadership read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 7 (LwL #15)

One principle in that book (Every Man’s Marriage) revolutionized my perspective as a leader in my home: as husband and father. Arterburn and Stoeker referred to the story of Nathan confronting David about David’s sin of adultery with Bathsheba and his murder of her husband, Uriah (II Samuel 11-12). read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 6 (LwL #14)

The puzzle pieces (“Who are you?” and “What are you doing here?”) started to align for me as well, once I understood my love language: Words of Affirmation. I thrived my entire life with pats on the back: good grades and the subsequent accolades from my high school teachers; cadet rank and ribbons read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 5 (LwL #13)

I threw myself into my studies in high school and strove for academic success. I pursued that NROTC Marine-option scholarship in order to join the Marine Corps – the toughest organization I knew of – largely to prove to my father that I was a man. I pushed myself for success academically and militarily read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 4 (LwL #12)

That friend, a chaplain’s wife, hugged Nora and asked how she’d been. Nora remembered her friend sharing a time when her daughter had struggled and had been caught doing wrong. Together, she and Nora had wept over that situation. Nora remembered that honest conversation, and it gave her courage. read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 3 (LwL #11)

Remembering that Nora enjoyed handwritten notes from me, I wrote her a nine-page letter, detailing my conciliatory thoughts. I asked her to forgive me, and admitted I didn’t know how to make our marriage work. I told Nora in essence, “I don’t know what you were looking for in me as your husband. read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 2 (LwL #10)

Instead of being a human being, I had become a human doing. Throughout my life, I’d been seeking affirmation from others. Others – who can be fickle and untrustworthy, even after you give 110 percent to them.

Shortly after the RVL seminar, John Bishop, a friend and Vietnam-era Marine, forwarded read more…

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Two Life-Changing Questions: Part 1 (LwL #9)

During October 2012 at the invitation of Lieutenant Colonel Chris McGowan, I felt honored to share my story with the Fifth Engineer Battalion, located at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. LTC McGowan, having heard my story during a previous assignment when we served together, asked me to share it to encourage read more…

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Freedom in Finances: Part 4 (LwL #8)

I looked our financial advisor in the eye and said, “I don’t know when my wife or I will die or when Jesus will return. But I do not want to have to tell Jesus, ‘Lord, I was going to give money to invest in your kingdom later.’” It seemed as if I were speaking Greek to our advisor.

He reiterated read more…

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Freedom in Finances: Part 3 (LwL #7)

Another learning point involved seeing friends associated with The Citadel (my alma mater) organize and contribute to an account that provided funds to help me with funeral bills. God was living up to one of his names: Jehovah-jireh (“The LORD who provides”).

And that wasn’t the last learning read more…

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Freedom in Finances: Part 2 (LwL #6)

In mid-January, Pastor Burrows asked me to speak at Faith Temple.

“Brother Danny, I can preach about God’s faithfulness from the Bible – Paul wrote twice in I Corinthians (1:9 and 10:13) that ‘God is faithful,’” he said. “But you’re experiencing it right now. A saying I really like read more…

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Freedom in Finances: Part 1 (LwL #5)

During my transition leave from active duty in the Marine Corps to calling #2, I felt privileged to speak for the Rev. Brad Kelley, the senior pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church in West Union, South Carolina. After sharing my story that beautiful August Sunday morning, I was stunned by the generosity read more…

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He Finished Well: Part 2 (LwL #4)

During Jon’s funeral service, many attendees shared what he had meant to them. One of his cousins asked all the young people at the funeral to stand up if Jon had mentored or provided direction in their lives. I saw dozens standing and realized that Jon had truly used his “marbles” (days) wisely. read more…

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He Finished Well: Part 1 (Lwl #3)

The morning of January 6, 2013, my best male friend reached into his “jar of marbles” one last time. Jon likely didn’t realize that day – a Sunday – would be his final day on earth. Continue reading

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Last Marble (LwL #2)

November 24, 2012, a lady I knew reached into her “jar of marbles” for one last time. She likely didn’t realize that this day was her last, for, after a lingering illness, she had passed into a coma 36 hours before. On Thanksgiving morning she returned home from the hospital and saw a magnificent read more…

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Jar of Marbles (LwL #1)

Hello and welcome aboard.

Likely you’ve noticed the marbles on this website – and I hope it’s not an indicator that I’ve lost mine! A mentor, Rev. Ray Vander Laan (www.followtherabbi.com), shared a story about a jar of marbles that challenged my perspective on life, particularly after witnessing read more…

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