High 5s for Mentors

15 12 2012

Nearly eleven years ago now, God brought a young man, Bill Lewis,  into my life that little did I know then, would end up being my best friend, financial coach, and Business Mentor. Bill had been involved in a Leadership Company called TEAM and introduced us to the founder  Orrin Woodward. We are very excited to be a part of the recently launched mentorship program called LIFE.  Some would think that an “older man” would be the one to look up to for coaching and mentoring. That is certainly not the case today. Some recent past Presidents have tarnished the thought of being the older, wiser, example set for our children to follow.

So, what is the big deal about a mentor you ask…

Younger men want and need the blessing of an older man to breathe life into them and develop a noble leader that exposes the leadership abilities that God has instilled in  them at birth. At some point, sons must leave the mentorship of dad to become a man. With a greater that 50% divorce rate for first marriages, most children grow up without the mentorship of a father. How do I know that you ask, I am a father who has suffered wounds from a failed first marriage, leaving a son to be raised mostly without the coaching of his father. He and I have both paid the price for that choice.

Bill Lewis, a much younger man than myself, has helped me to mend those wounds, restore my faith, and forgive myself, just like Christ has forgiven each of us. Understand that a “mentor” does not have to be an older man.

Mentors are specialists. A mentor is one who supports rather than competing with you. A mentor is one who is primarily a cheerleader and not a critic. A mentor is one who sees what is right and good in you, and identifying your strengths. A mentor is one who encourages the development of your gifts while seeking to protect you from costly mistakes.  Bill helped me understand that paying interest on items that depreciate is a costly mistake. Buying and leasing new cars, trading them in every three years, paying for beautiful RVs that made us feel good to keep up with every other camper was very costly. Sometimes truth is alarming, but it is still the truth.

A mentor is one who admires and delights in you because he instinctively recognizes your value and untapped potential. A mentor does not have to necessarily have to be a close friend, but he will be a confidant. A mentor will teach you wisdom through experience. A mentor will have belief in you and give cheers for your achievements. A mentor in some instances is truly a proven hero.

To quote Exodus 18:19-20 Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel. and God shall be with thee. Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the cause unto God. And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt show them the way wherein they must walk, and work that they must do. Moses clearly had a gift to share with others. That is where “Iron sharpens Iron” comes from.

A mentor chooses to cultivate a relationship with you. He is willing to take a chance on you and he is respected by others. A mentor has a network of resources and is consulted by others. A mentor is as good a listener as he is a talker and is consistent in his lifestyle.

A mentor is concerned with your interests and is able to diagnose your needs. Younger mentors like Orrin Woodward and Bill Lewis give older men like myself a restored purpose that we can serve the second half our life that adds the satisfaction that is missing from an older mans life. We all need mentors…….

Do you know what the potholes in your life are?

It is a poor man that goes through life without letting a few men inside.

God Bless

Brian

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My “Inner Voice”

16 08 2012

Well over ten years ago now, we were introduced to, and confronted with truth. A program of personal development created by Orrin Woodward and Chris Brady, was introduced to us by my now great friend and mentor Bill Lewis. The personal development program is called TEAM.

Having worked for the State of Michigan nearly 20 years at the time, I was confronted with my “Inner Voice”. Yes, we all have one (some of us have more than one) that speaks to us with truth. We can deny things all we want, but we know truth when confronted with it.

The following are some truths my inner voice was shouting very clearly!

I was a poser in my walk of faith

I was a poor example of a husband and father

I had created a debt my wife did not deserve

My occupation had become my primary focus

These four are plenty for this post. When Bill contacted me on the phone, I had no idea who he was, but we had a mutual friend named Carrie Will. When Bill asked me if I had ever heard of Orrin Woodward, I honestly had not. When he explained to me that Carrie had told him I was a sharp person and he was expanding a leadership team in the area, my inner voice (ego) said yes I have been a leader of lots of people for a long time. funny heh?

I explained to Bill that I was a supervisor and really did not need to read as he asked me if I had read a book called the “Cashflow Quadrant”. I’ll bet he thought I was an idiot. Well, to help you understand, I did read the book and that is how I know I was a financial moron. I had no stinking clue what that book was talking about. Talk about a wake up call!

You see a leader takes responsibility, listens to the inner voice of integrity and character, and then makes a decision based on his or her courage to do the right thing.  A leader by definition not only does not do what is the wrong thing, but also does what is the morally right thing. My financial decisions at that point in my life were made based on what made me feel good. That was my inner voice that received the most attention no matter what the outcome was. My financial choices were made based on how it made me feel. How selfish is that?

As I began to get involved with the leadership program that Orrin and Chris were establishing, my courage improved. When management at work would ask me to do things that I knew directly violated union contracts, I had the character and the courage to make my choice based on the correct moral solution. Many times today, natural resource management decisions are based on how they may impact the state’s budget, not necessarily what is truly in the best interest of the protection of the resource. And that is what I took an Oath to do when I was hired! My inner voice has spoken very loud and clear lately, as a result of one of the states largest wildfires in history that burned nearly 25,ooo acres. Nearly 100 structures were burned, and the truth is, suppression efforts are not what stopped the forward spread of the fire, GOD did. It is known as Lake Superior!  My inner voice is wishing I would have been more vocal with the recommendations I made for forest treatments. Praise GOD, no one was hurt or killed.

Lastly, This thing called Team, has led Sherry and I both down a path to restore our Faith. And that my friends, is the decision that has improved every part of our lives. That decision affects every part of a person’s life. The Biblical principles that this great nation was founded upon have deteriorated to a point where Sponge Bob cartoons are what is looked to to entertain our youth. How sad!

Sherry and I were recently honored to host Oliver and Rachael DeMille at an International Leadership Conference in Wisconsin. What an amazing man. Oliver explained to us that no one is really looking out for our grandchildren to tell them the truth!

Well ladies and gentlemen, someone is! They are Team and they have launched and education program called LIFE that is sweeping the world with truth. We find it so easy to blame others for the situation that our lives are in today.

We certainly have a long way to go and a short time to get there, but please do this. Ask yourself and have your inner voice be truthful

How is my faith?

How is my relationship with my wide and family?

How is my financial situation?

Has my job become the most important thing?

Am I making choices based on integrity and character or what makes me feel good?

Am I making my choices based on integrity and character regardless of what others think?

What will people say about me when I’m gone?

We all have a duty to fix things. I encourage you, come join Team Leadership!

Ladies and Gentlemen, my inner voice is “The Holy Spirit”

Your inner voice may tell you this is hard, BUT…..

Your children deserve it!!

GOD Bless

Brian





They Deserve Freedom

27 12 2011

Last October, we were privileged to attend an International Leadership Conference where Orrin Woodward invited Oliver DeMille as a Keynote Speaker. Mr. DeMille is a world respected authority on most facets of our government and our Nations Constitution and a best-selling author, having written numerous books on Leadership, Politics, Education and Freedom.

It’s interesting to listen to conversations with people like Orrin Woodward, Chris Brady, and Oliver DeMille. It becomes very clear their knowledge of leadership, government, education, and finance is a result of continued learning from credible sources of information. A large billboard on I-75 south of Wolverine Michigan, shows a newborn infant wrapped in a blanket being welcomed into the world and the caption says “Welcome to the World, you owe the government $850,000.00”!! Knowing what our nations current debt is, that is no laughing matter.

Proverbs 13:22 says “A good man will leave an inheritance for his children’s children” Our current state of affairs is certainly a long ways from financial freedom. A free America can only be maintained by a culture of adults. My oldest grandson Brandon attended a recent Team Mens Leadership Meeting with me where he had the opportunity to meet many of Michigan’s Top Leadership Gurus. During the course of our conversation, Brandon learned some of the freedoms we enjoyed earlier have been severely restricted in his day.                                       

In Oliver recent book “Freedom Shift” he explains virtually every child looks forward to the freedoms and     responsibilities of being an adult. I remember driving the ole Farmall tractor on the property at the ripe old age of 8. I serviced that tractor for my dad one day thinking I was helping out. What a lesson that became. Twenty two quarts of oil out of the case in the crankcase, I figured that was enough. I learned I had the wrong plug out of the motor to see the oil level

On Thursday evening of the Leadership Conference, Oliver spoke to a very interested group of leaders and cautioned everyone in attendance that our number one concern should be to make sure we are raising our children and grandchildren to be the parents of the future FREE America. This is more difficult to achieve than first meets the eye. Chapter 7 of the “Freedom Shift” explains the impacts on today’s youth from Elementary Culture to the High School Culture to the College-Corporate Culture to the Official Culture to the Adult Culture to define the “Hidden War”

Orrin and Oliver (among many others) have become advocates of truth to keep our ancestors thinking alive. Simply said, they are among many who plan to restore our nations principles to the level that she was founded upon.

We must stop the Merry-go-Round of “Freedom Loss” long enough in our busy lives to insure our children and their children will have a FREE America.

GOD Bless your 2012

Brian








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