Author Archive

Having a Battle Buddy is Important

  “How have you sinned since last we met?”   This isn’t a question you want to hear from your senior chaplain or pastor—or any other person in spiritual authority over you.  But it’s a question that’s been asked in pairs and small groups during accountability sessions for almost three centuries. On Christmas day in 1738… […]

A Salvation Story

A Salvation Story For All Help couldn’t come fast enough Housing 110,000 captives—more than a quarter of them American—Stalag VII A was the largest prisoner-of-war camp in Germany during World War II.   My uncle, Lt. Col. Ray Tyrrell, was one of them. On June 21, 1944—on his 63rd combat mission from RAF East Wretham in […]

Advice For Military Dads

Looking back over my military career, I can honestly say it was easier carrying out my duties on the job than it was being a good father to my two children.  In part, this was because my professional training prepared me for the demands I’d face at work, but I learned about being a dad […]

Support Your Local Chaplain

Expectations We’ve seen it in every chapel we’ve attended.  Whether our chaplains minister in operational units or the community chapel—or both—they are constantly faced with unrealistic expectations of those they serve.  Folks on the receiving end often want the chaplain to do it all.  We expect them to give priority to meeting all our spiritual […]

Love Your Chaplain

Chaplain? Father Mulcahy! For many, the only chaplain they’ve seen is Father Mulcahy on the TV show M.A.S.H. A kind-hearted, wise and faithful priest, he was a key supporting character. In watching all the episodes that feature the father, you begin to get a sense of the breadth of duties he was responsible for. But […]

Success or Significance

Right or Wrong I led workplace Bible studies over the lunch hour during my days in the military.  I was part of the leadership team for the chapel parish council, which met monthly during the duty day.  In this capacity, I once stayed behind a meeting with the vice commander to share my spiritual views […]

Glorifying Me

Huge Egos Thinking back through my time in the military, it’s a lot easier to remember folks with huge egos than it is to recall men and women who consistently displayed a genuine sense of humility.  The ultimate example of arrogance I witnessed was a colonel who told a group of young officers that he […]

What Are We Sacrificing?

Innocent Sacrifice When I met him, Sidney was an elderly man who had served with the British army in the Far East during World War II.  Shortly after his arrival in Singapore, his battalion was defeated by the Japanese, and the survivors were assigned to various prisoner-of-war camps.  Sidney—and most of the others in his unit—were put to […]

A God’s-Eye View

Difficult Decisions We all face difficult decisions in our military careers and in our daily duties.  Years ago I was selected for an assignment to South Korea.  I had three options.  Report to Seoul for one year, and leave my family in the States.  Take my family with me for a two-year assignment in the […]

Hang In There

Press on… Hang In… Persevere After working on a major project for a couple of months, I had to convince three senior officers of the value of my proposal.  Following my presentation, my four-star commander asked a lieutenant general and a brigadier general what they recommended.  Picking up on what they saw as the commander’s […]