I wanted to let you guys know that a large portion of my booklet is complete and I am now turning my attention to a few key parts that I need to add and make edits to. I am also waiting on a story from one of my brothers.

I am pretty excited about getting this project completed! I am going to start looking for an agent and look to see about getting this published the old fashioned way or self publishing. We shall see.

iron wil

Finding Your Direction

Many years ago, I wrote a short poem called “north star“. I encapsulates the idea that we are more than a one track person. I have always valued the “jack of all trades” mentality; the ability to pick up and gather additional skills. I have generally disagreed with the “master of none”, because many of the men I knew growing up were quite capable of doing several different things. These men are professionals in their specific field.

I knew an infantryman who coded in his spare time, my father was a heavy diesel mechanic who would often spend time in the wood shop on base. My boy scout leader was great at leading scouts and he could rope a cow like nobody’s business not to mention that he was also a soldier. Many of these men were great fathers and husbands.

While I work in IT, I am also a local leader in my church and I assist in the regional business of those congregations, and I have a small business. Not to mention that I am a father and husband. I also have other interests that range from the personal to the political.

When I was 24, I came across the book “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” and I devoured it. I understood that I could envision my future and create that future with purpose! One of the reasons, I shifted from my computer and IT focus for this website is because personal growth/development has long been a personal passion of mine.

I ask you …

What do you want your future to be? How do you want to be remembered when you die? What legacy to you want to leave for your family, friends, and your community?

iron wil

Kung Fu … You

kung-fu-panda-3 2 Dads

My wife and I took some of our boys to see Kung Fu Panda 3 this weekend. We all enjoyed it and had a great time together. A clear theme of the movie was to know yourself and become the best version of yourself. As the film opens, we learn that our hero is to become a teacher and Master Shifu tells him that he must learn how to teach others. Of course, Po is freaked out and makes a mess of his first teaching attempt. He doesn’t know how to teach Kung Fu to others.

Through the course of the film we are introduced to the villain and the stage is set for Po to succeed or fail. As the climax approaches, we see that Po understands Master Shifu’s council to “become the best you”. He, of course, figures out with the help of his friends how to defeat the villain and win the day.

I realized as the credits rolled that each of the films had the same theme … to become the best version of yourself. In the first film, Po needed to learn Kung Fu so that he could defeat Tai Lung. In the second film, Po needs to learn an advanced martial art skill and gain inner peace. In the third film, Po must learn another advanced martial art skill and understand himself on a deeper level. In each film, Po must improve himself so that he can overcome the challenge placed before him.

This is exactly what happens in life, we either learn and grow so that we can over come the challenges or we shrink and become stuck behind a stone. If we grow the stone gets stepped on and we rise above the version of our self we had been. Around the age of 12 my mother gave me probably and unarguably the best gift she has even given me after life … the knowledge that I can change and become a better person. That through work, study, effort, and patience; I could make adjustments to my personality and character! I could and I have! By no means can I say that I am perfect or that I am some paragon of manhood, fatherhood, or humanity. I am a mere mortal and imperfect to boot! I am a devout follower of Christ and pray that I can be worthy of His kingdom and glory.

iron wil

MacDonald, Trusted

It is a greater compliment to be trusted than to be loved.” – George MacDonald

This concept is one thing that I have come around to after many years of personal growth, study, and contemplation. I have felt that integrity is a keystone characteristic and for many years I have worked on my own self to find a firm and strong foundation to stand upon. I have found my rock of principles to stand upon and take up my banner. I heard a story about a man who had great integrity and it was mind blowing.

“I was raised on a small farm in northern Utah. We were blessed to have enough land, not enough to make a living, but enough to make work for a young boy. My parents were good, hardworking, industrious people. In order to make ends meet, my father took outside employment. Each morning before he left for work, he would make a list of chores he wanted me to accomplish before he came home that evening.

I remember on one occasion one of the items on the list was to take a small broken part from our hay rake to the blacksmith shop to have it repaired. I was uncomfortable about going. My father hadn’t left any money, and I wondered what I should do. I put off going as long as I could. When all my other chores were finished, I knew I couldn’t avoid it any longer. Father expected the broken part to be repaired when he came home, and it was my responsibility to see that it was done.

I can still remember walking the mile or so to the blacksmith shop. I even remember how uncomfortable I was as I watched him weld the part. As he finished, I nervously told him that I had no money, but that my father would pay him later. I’m sure he sensed my anxiety. He patted me on the shoulder and said, “Son, don’t worry, your father’s word is as good as his bond.” I remember running all the way home, relieved that the part had been repaired and grateful that my father was known as a man whose word was as good as his bond.

As a boy I didn’t fully understand what that meant, but I knew it was good and something to be desired. It was years later that I recognized that a person whose word is as good as his bond is a person of honesty and integrity, a person to be trusted. In today’s world, there are some who think nothing of breaking their word, their promises, their covenants with man and with God. What a blessing it is to deal with those whom we can trust.”

Sheldon F. Child
As Good As Our Bond
General Conference April 1997

While some will count this story as quaint or nice; the truth is bold and direct. I hope that I will live to be a man of integrity like Mr. Child’s father.

iron wil