Self-Defense

A Facebook friend of mine posted a picture recently of defense moves that a woman could use if attacked by a man. It was sincerely intentioned, but I felt strongly that I should reply. This post is based upon the response I gave him.

I hate to be a spoil sport, but as a former Judo instructor, I do have some insight into self-defense and full contact fighting and I always worry that people think moves like these are practical for untrained people, let alone a untrained smaller woman facing down a larger male adversary.

Most people, not just women, will freeze when attacked. This is unfortunately why most attacks succeed. This is because everyone reverts to training under extreme stress and most people have no training so they do nothing.

There is also a statistic I’ve seen (verified, but don’t have a link right now) that when attacked by an attacker with a direct rush attack from even twenty feet away an armed police officer will usually fail to draw their service weapon and engage the attacker in the time it takes for the distance between them to be closed.

Defending yourself is an art. Screaming and running away as fast as possible is actually not a bad strategy. Most people can run faster scared than the assailant can angry. Concealed carry of a handgun is good, but many, many repetition drills are required for the draw and fire to be second nature enough that someone can do it in a high stress situation. Also defending yourself in some jurisdictions can bring more legal troubles than a sane human being would expect. The UK is particularly bad in this respect. Of course, better to be judged by twelve than carried by six, but many people are still mentally and physically unprepared for the aftermath of a violent confrontation.

My self-defense advice for anyone is a four-step plan and pray that you never get to step four. The worst I’ve experienced is about step 2 1/2.

1. Don’t be there.
2. Leave before trouble happens.
3. Talk your way out of the situation.
4. Fight.

Certainly a class in full-contact martial arts is useful, but diligent practice is required to make the moves and techniques second nature, because if they aren’t, you will freeze with indecision.

Quote: Churchill – Writing A Book

Why yes, I might see a little of the truth in this as I finish my own humble book!

Writing a book is an adventure. To begin with, it is a toy and an amusement; then it becomes a mistress, and then it becomes a master, and then a tyrant. The last phase is that just as you are about to be reconciled to your servitude, you kill the monster, and fling him out to the public.

- Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill (1874-1965)

How Many Blessings Do You Want?

The audio link for the main sermon from Sunday 13th April 2014 titled “How Many Blessings Do You Want?”

Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully. He shall receive the blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.

Psalm 24:3-5

2014 Wisconsin District Minister’s Conference

Written for submission to our district newsletter.

The Wisconsin District Minister’s Conference is an opportunity for the pastors and ministers of Wisconsin to gather together. It is a time of fellowship, business, spiritual refreshing and ensuring that we are all in unity and seeking the same vision for our state.

Still cold outside at the Osthoff

Still cold outside at the Osthoff

While the temperatures outside were the typical cold days of late March, the spiritual temperature inside was nice and toasty. Rev. Raymond Woodward, Executive Presbyter for Canada, was our officiant for the business meetings and the primary speaker.

Bro. Raymond Woodward

Bro. Raymond Woodward

Bro. Woodward preached all three services during the conference. He spoke on “Embracing the Vision”, “When in Trouble Plead the Blood” and “The Mantle”. There is no way to describe these messages in just a few words, so I strongly encourage you to buy the DVDs from Bro. Jacobs at Media Missions.

Bishop John E. Putnam

Bishop John E. Putnam

During the Wednesday morning business meeting, Bro. John E. Putnam was re-elected as District Superintendent. Bro. M.W. Rogers was re-elected as Global Missions Director. Bro. Geoff Albertson was elected as Sunday School Director with Bro. Dustin Owens elected as Sunday School Secretary. Bro. Tim Vik was re-elected as Youth Ministries Director. Sis. Barb Hilderbrand was re-elected as Ladies Ministry Director. Bro. Scott Jacobs was re-elected as Media Missions Director. Bro. Tony Tamel was elected as the Appeals Council representative.

Bro. Tim Vik

Bro. Tim Vik

Bro. Tony Tamel

Bro. Tony Tamel

Bro. Geoff Albertson

Bro. Geoff Albertson

Bro. Dustin Owens

Bro. Dustin Owens

Bro. M.W. Rogers

Bro. M.W. Rogers

Bro. Scott Jacobs

Bro. Scott Jacobs

Thursday morning saw the ratification of board appointed positions. The following were all ratified by the membership: Bro. Steve Rogers for Men’s Ministry. Bro. Craig Lundt for District News. Bro. Mike Hook for Revival Commission. Sis. Darlene Boyt for Music Ministry. Bro. Rich Thomas for North American Missions Secretary. Bro. John D. Putnam for Purpose Institute. Bro. Ernest Martinez for Spanish Ministry. Bro. Aaron Soto for Young Ministers Coordinator.

My favorite fact from the conference was that world wide, our organization reports for the past year an average of 299 people baptized in Jesus name and an average of 363 people receiving the Holy Ghost every single day.

Sis. Putnam and the General Manager of the Osthoff

Sis. Putnam and the General Manager of the Osthoff

My favorite report from the conference was that the General Manager of the Osthoff Resort, where we meet, was filled with the Holy Ghost during the final service.

Wash, Cook, Clean and Iron

Back when I was a lad, my mother would tell me that she would not allow me to leave home until I knew how to wash, cook, clean and iron. And she made good on her word. When I left home at the tender age of 19 to head off for Radiography school I was equipped to operate in the real world … or at least not starve to death and have clean clothes.

At the school (we lived in the upper floors and had lessons on the ground floor) I was one of only two guys and the other guy would take his laundry home every weekend for his mom to do. I washed mine on weekday evenings and cooked for myself and did my washing up afterwards. The female students were very impressed! I look back and am very thankful for my parent’s wisdom in this preparation they gave me.

In the kitchen, I could cook rice and pasta and a number of different meats. I knew a couple of sauces to go with them and knew not to overcook vegetables during preparation. One time, I even got fancy and bought fresh fish and figured out how to grill it and even remembered to season it with dill. It was good. And for a party I made cupcakes. They were very well received.

I knew how to clean because I was on the cleaning rota at home. I could clean a toilet to my mother’s satisfaction, which was a very high bar to clear. After that, cleaning the kitchen was easy and vacuuming a piece of cake. I washed windows, moped the kitchen floor and even dusted when I absolutely had to. (I still don’t like dusting.)

Laundry, for a guy, is pretty straight forward. In fact I still do most of my own laundry. Although, my wife declines to let me wash any of her delicate articles of clothing after seeing my manly laundry style with my own clothes.

Most ironing I do not enjoy, but I can do it. Thankfully with dry-cleaning and wrinkle-free shirts I don’t have that much to do these days, but I can do it. My father was in the British Royal Navy and he taught me to iron, so I can iron a pretty good dress shirt if I say so myself.

Recently I got to thinking about preparing my children to leave the nest. My daughters are 14 and 12. Peter has a while before he’s ready to leave. But the countdown is on for the girls. Not that I want them to leave, but I know that eventually they will, so my duty as a parent is to prepare them for that time. One way we do this is to include them in household activities. They accompany us to the grocery store. They help during meal preparation. They have recently begun to help their mother with laundry. No decision has yet been made on who gets to teach them how to iron!

And while these are good personal basics, perhaps there are other skills I need to make sure they have. Basic sewing is good, because it’s important to know how to sew on buttons if they come off. Driving is important, not just an automatic as most people drive in the U.S., but I believe that being able to handle a stick shift is important to bring your driving skills to the next level. Creating a budget and keeping your finances in order. Being technology savvy and knowing how to use a computer efficiently. Shooting a gun, handling knives and a little self-defense skill is good too. Reading a map.

But how else can I prepare them for life? Ensure that they have read a wide range of the classics? They’re both doing well with learning to play the piano. A good understanding of mathematics is helpful in many aspects of life. A good understanding of biblical doctrine will serve them sell and keep them saved.

Or maybe, I should just get a poster with that Heinlein quote printed on it? You know, that quote:

A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.

Robert A. Heinlein

I’d be very pleased if they could do most of that.

Chaplain Level 2 Training

Written for submission to our district newsletter.

As a follow-up from last year, the good folks at the Pentecostals of Sheboygan County in Sheboygan Falls, WI hosted another chaplaincy training class. Pastor John D. Putnam in conjunction with Purpose Institute, organized two classes: Level 1 and Level 2. I attended the Level 1 class last year, so this year I took the Level 2 training.

A chaplain is a minister or trained lay representative, attached to a secular institution for the purpose of facilitating spiritual care. Institutions that typically retain chaplains are hospitals, nursing homes, law enforcement and fire, large companies, prisons and jails. Chaplains may also be found at the state level and even at the federal level of government.

Bro. Sidney Poe

Bro. Sidney Poe

Our training this year was again provided by Bro. Sidney Poe, the Education Director of the UPCI Department of Chaplaincy. Additional training was provided by Bro. William Dillon, the founder and Division Commander of the Department of Chaplaincy. A presentation on Prison Chaplaincy was given by Bro. Dustin Owens. The format of the Level 2 class was Friday evening and Saturday daytime. Lots of time sitting on metal folding chairs, but absolutely worth it!

Bro. William Dillon

Bro. William Dillon

The Level 1 class is more of an introduction to chaplaincy and covers a wide range of subjects to enable the student to begin basic chaplaincy after the class. The Level 2 is more of a deep dive into fewer subjects, but each important for the chaplain as they advance in their duties.

Bro. Poe spent a lot of time covering the core values of a chaplain. This led into further teaching on professionalism and ethics within the chaplaincy. A panel discussion on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was very useful and led nicely into training by Bro. Dillon about Critical Incident Stress Management (CISM).

The Level 2 Class (minus the humble photographer)

The Level 2 Class (minus the humble photographer)

If you are interested in chaplaincy or are even just wondering if chaplaincy would be a good ministry for you, then I recommend attending a Level 1 class. Pastor Putnam has not yet arranged any dates for further classes, but I’m sure they’ll be advertised when finalized. While you are waiting, feel free to visit the UPCI Department of Chaplaincy website (Occupational Chaplains of America) at http://ocachaplains.com/