Special Forces Association
Chapter XXIII - 23
Follow The Leader


One of the key characteristics cadre look for in students going through Ranger School, the Selection Phase, or Special Forces School is leadership ability.

Watching the movie “The Last Samurai” recently I was impressed by the NCO who told his C.O. to take a hike when ordered to fall to the rear while the troops he had trained went into the attack. That’s leadership. He, like his C.O. later in the movie, knew that you couldn’t lead from the rear. I think the last Commander-in-Chief to lead his troops into battle was General (President) George Washington.

In Special Forces we would say, “Lead or get out of the way!” The point man on an A-team can’t do his job from the rear or the middle of the pack. Neither can we as husbands or fathers lead our family from the rear. The main focus of Promise Keepers is to encourage men to lead, to be the example, the model for their families and that has to be done as a leader not a follower. It means setting the example for your family in your walk with God. It means being seen reading your Bible and praying. It means going into church rather than dropping the wife and kids off while you head off for a game of golf or home to watch football on TV. If you won’t lead your family someone else will and you may not be happy with the results. As husband and father you are like the leadoff man on a relay team – setting the pace for those who follow.

King David’s biggest problem was when he as commander failed to lead his troops into battle and instead, like the commander in the new TV series based on Delta Force, bedded down with the wife of one of his troops.

Jesus always led from the front just as the Good Shepard does in leading his sheep. Jesus didn’t ask anything of his disciples that he wasn’t willing to do first and that same model should apply to commanders, or team sergeants, or husbands and fathers.


Chaplain Col. Vahan Sipantzi
26972 Lower Pleasant Ridge Rd.
Wilder, ID  83676
(208) 482-7495