In 1917, during World War I, William Tyler Page wrote the American’s Creed. This statement of our beliefs was recited daily in schools and public ceremonies for many years. Almost a century later, most of us have never heard of it. However, with a decade since 9/11, this creed applies more than ever, and it goes like this:
“I believe in the United States of America as a government of the people, by the people, for the people; whose just powers are derived from the consent of the governed; a democracy in a republic; a sovereign nation of many sovereign states; a perfect union, one and inseparable; established upon those principles of freedom, equality, and humanity for which American patriots sacrificed their lives and fortunes.
I, therefore, believe it is my duty to my country to love it, to support its constitution, to obey its laws, to respect its flag, and to defend it against all enemies.”
As Scouts, we promise to do our duty to our country. So, please keep this creed in your mind, let it settle on your heart, and carry out your duty accordingly. Have a good night.
So, I was on the white water rafting trip this last weekend, and I saw a great example of leadership that kind of surprised me, and that was our guide. You see, the rafting company provides a guide in every boat to lead that team successfully down the river. Our guide trained us in how to carry our gear, paddle our raft, and even perform a rescue. But, he also had enough strength and skill that he could take over and do alone what all five of us could not do together. When it came time for lunch, he and the rest of the guides set everything up, and then, just like our JLs, they ate last. Most of all, our guide led us to work together as a team. We had to pay close attention because his commands changed often – left stoke forward, right stroke back, shift to the left, and everyone bounce! As long as we ALL did what he said then things worked out well. But, if just one of us missed it or did something different, then we’d get off course, and he’d nicely guide us back on track. What can we remember from this as leaders? Practice your skills until you can perform them better than most, put your team before you, teach them your skills, and most of all guide them to work together as a team.