Welcome to the win at home first podcast. I'm your host, Cory Carlson. This podcast is where we talk about how successful business leaders win, not only at work, but also at home. On this podcast, we will go behind the scenes with great leaders to hear stories of how they win. Thank you for listening and on to today's episode.
(00:25): Hello, this is Corey. This next episode with Dan Britton, who we'll hear about in a minute is a great episode. It's one of the longest ones I've published in. Quite honestly, when I have gone back to relisten to it, there's nothing I wanted to take out to make it shorter. So I encourage you to stick through the whole thing because there's all parts of wisdom throughout the whole, far from the beginning where we talk about how we need to be open to divine encounters while we're traveling, while we're out and about. We talk about the importance of family vision at home. He's had a long career at FCA for 30 years, and I work with a lot of people who are questioning their calling or what is their calling in life. And he's got some great answers to that and to the consistency of him showing up every day, we talk about controlling the controllables and how that works out. How about the one word I booked that he wrote that is just gone on to international success? Talk about the idea of pursuing wisdom. There's so much that we cover. I hope you enjoy this episode as much as I did having this conversation, as well as relistening to it on today's episode.
(01:34): Hello, the score Carlson, you're listening to win at home first podcast. I'm excited about today's guest Dan Britton. I'll explain how I met him here in a minute, but he is an author of six books. One of which has been pretty darn instrumental in my life. Talking about the one word. And we'll discuss that today. He's also the chief field officer for FCA located in Kansas city, being from Kansas. It's a building and organization. I, I was well aware of. And then he's, you know, he's an author speaker, a, a father of three kids and married. So he is winning in all areas of life. And so wanting to have him on as a guest to, to learn and share some insights and ideas. So, Dan, thank you very much for being on the window first podcast. Amen. Glad to be here. Awesome. Well, to get us started, I think it's fun of how we met and just to give some context for the listeners and you know, even to remind yourself, cause I don't know if I shared all this with you, but I went to Kansas city in October and to see my, my, my dad and my brother and have a weekend.
(02:40): And so as I'm sitting in the air, Kansas city airport, I look up, I, you know, see you engaging with your team could tell you're the leader, the way everyone was engaging back and forth. And I just took note of that. And then I put my head down and next thing I know I'm up and you're leaning against the, a column praying on the phone. And I could tell that you were, you know, and I just like, who is this guy? He's leading his work team over here. He's over here praying for, I, I, you know, I don't know who was on the other end of that phone call those a small group. It was a family member, you know, don't know, but I was like, you know what? I want to talk to this guy, like leaders like this who are strong in their faith.
(03:22): They're not afraid to pray in public. So I got up walked over with my first book in hand, always traveled with a few and I handed you the book and you were super kind. You let me give my whole talk sales pitch. And you just, you said, Oh, this is great. And then you pointed up to John Gordon's name on the top of the book. He said, do you know him? And I was like, I kinda know him. Oh, he's one of my best friends. I was like, Oh my gosh. So anyways, wild story, we had a good little, couple more minute conversation, but man, I just thank you so much for the example that you were in the airport, as well as graciously receiving my just my conversation.
(04:04): Yeah. I T I told Corey, you got to always look for those God moments, right? Those serendipitous moments of connections that God kind of shows up. And, and I tell you, I, I travel almost 50% of my time, at least pre COVID still travel quite a bit, but I'm always fascinated to see who God brings into my path to have a divine connection. And I believe that was one, one of them that we had a chance there in the Kansas city airport, we're getting ready to head out to a leadership development program that we do with some of our top emerging leaders in Atlanta. And so we had about five or six from our office here in Kansas city, flying to Atlanta to be with about 30, 40 other young emerging leaders. And that was when you caught us getting ready to head there.
(04:50): But you know, I, I think a lot of times we don't expect that, but I'm starting to corrugate. Like I expect that I expect that when I get out and I'm traveling, I see that God's gonna bring people my way that he wants me to engage with, to connect with, to minister, to, to pray with. I can tell you a story after story of, of standing in the back of an airplane, flying around the world, talking to someone, praying with them, ministering to them because God allowed us both to get up and get a break and stand in the back and, and get, and get some peanuts in a soft drink. And here, here comes, ministry comes out of it. And I think as believers, we have to expect that, you know, and some reason we're always surprised by it. It's like, that's what God does. God loves to orchestrate that on our behalf.
(05:39): Yeah, no, that's great. I think some, it's almost a self fulfilling prophecy in the standpoint of if we leave our house and get on the plane that day, or then you have to be a plane, could just be any random travel encounter thinking I'm not going to see anybody today. I'm just going to keep my head down and get my work done. Well, of course, you're going to see anybody, your heads down, but instead of you get on there like today, I'm going to have a cool divine encounter. It's going to happen because your eyes are open to see ears to hear, and your hands are as open to, to receive whatever God has for you. So, man, it's so neat to hear you saying
(06:10): I could, I could write a book just on divine encounters while traveling, not craved with what I've prayed with flight attendants, who just there, you know, it just, they opened up and I've literally like, they've wept as they've shared, what's going on in their life. And just having a chance to pray over them and to pray with them and for their families. But you know, they, they don't probably have a pastor in their life that that's stepping in and, and just seeing those opportunities is just, has been a joy. And it's like, that's, that's not even my ministry. I work with coaches and athletes, and yet we're always ministers, right? We're always stepping into the gap and allowing God to use us. And it's just one of those joys that to have your head on a swivel. So, okay Lord. Oh, there's Corey. Look, he's came. He's coming up to me. You heard me talk, heard me pray with someone on the phone. And here's the one of those, another divine encounters. And here we are doing this podcast.
(07:06): Yeah, exactly. Yeah. So fun. I could keep talking about that. That's good. But I do want to dive into a couple of questions that I was excited to learn from you. And one is, I love asking leaders. What's that key trait that you believe people need to have in order to win at home first?
(07:23): Yeah. Wow. When at home first, I think Corey, that if you're not winning at home, you're not winning anywhere, right? You don't want me at home. Nothing else matters. If you are winning at home, nothing else matters. It all starts with winning at home. And we, we say a lot of times in the sports world, you got to win in the locker room. First in concept, win at home first. And you're winning at home first, then nothing else matters. Like everything else falls into place. If you're not winning at home, nothing else matters. Cause everything's fallen apart. And I, you know, I'm blessed now my wife and I have been married for 30 years. We dated for nine years. We've been together almost for 40 years. That's a whole nother story. The nine years of dating all the way through high school college and one year afterwards.
(08:06): But I'm only 53 and I've known her for almost 40 years of my 53 years on earth. So pretty much she knows everything about me. And we had three adult kids and all three got married, married, Eli, our youngest one back in September. And now he's got to wait for grandkids. We have three married kids and bring on the grandkids, which we're we're, we're not no pressure, but Hey, that's the next, next season. But you know, when our kids were young, I think where it starts, Cory is, is we have to know exactly what our family's all about. I remember when our kids were young, we, we gathered them in the kitchen table and we said, what's going to be our family mission statement. And I know you probably train on this and you share that, Hey, you should have a family mission statement. You should have a personal mission statement, organizational mission statement.
(08:53): And I remember as the three of them and my wife and I, we sat around the table and we came up with the simplest sticky, transferrable mission statement we could, which is simply this love. God, love, family, love others, love yourself, nothing else matters. And I'm telling you like our kids never had to write it down even today. If you actually called my three adult kids and ask them, Hey, what was the Britain family mission statement? They'd go, Oh my gosh. It's love God, love family, love others, love yourself. And nothing. They would love the last part, right? They would be like, nothing else matters a little passion. But I think really that's where it started. Corey is just knowing what our destination was, what, what, what is our we're on point to do what? And, and that really became our family, create our family mission statement.
(09:44): The guided us in here. We are now my three kids through a lot of prayer and obviously focused that here they are, they married three amazing solid Christian believers. And they're found, you know, all the families. So like their families and our family, no divorce all together. It's like unbelievable how God allowed all this to happen. But it started with, I think really around that kitchen table, just simply as a leader, first and foremost, not of a ministry reaching 2 million people around the world and 2300 staff that I have to ever see, but actually I got the three kids and a wife I have to lead. So reading for was more important than 2300. And sometimes we get that reversed around and we think, Oh, I gotta lead this 2300. And Oh, by the way the four get my leftovers. They get the table scraps versus me and I'm going to give them my very best to my family and I'm going to invest most in them. And Oh, by the way, I get a chance to, I get the opportunity to lead 2300 people and staff around the world.
(10:53): Yeah, it's so good. I'll share a lot with clients and just, you know, friends where the end of the day does not stop. When you walk through the front door, it's when you put your head down at the pillow, because so often you're right. People get the scraps, they get the fumes left in the gas tank, whatever it may be. And so to put that first, and I love the idea of a family vision and values. We to have one and for us, it was interesting how it kind of all started. We moved to Cincinnati. I remember someone on main stage. It wasn't our main pastor, someone else talking about how your family vision statement has to be greater than the, you know, six year old boy, that could be the boyfriend in a, for your daughter, because otherwise we'll be distracted. I remember hearing that.
(11:35): And my daughter at the time was only eight, but then now she is 16. And I was like, Oh my goodness, my family's gotta be spout something bigger. So we did put together that vision statement, you know, ours, isn't, you know, shortened, pithy, ours is, you know, rooted in God. We branch out to bring others, hope, love, and joy. And, and so that's been fun do, but it also helps remind our family what it's all about. And it's interesting, Dan, as you talk about that, so many people just wing it, like, Hey, we've got a vision statement for work. We've got strategy meetings at work. We've got, you know, our weekly cadence meetings with our direct reports, but yet at home, no vision statement infrequent date nights. But we hope every once in a while, we get to hang out with our kids. But those are the ones that ended up losing in the end.
(12:19): Yeah, I think I love it. I, it's not that hard, right? It's not that hard to put together. It was one night around the kitchen table for us to craft that short sweet mission statement that they remember 30 years later. Right. It's just, it just became a part of it became our core stone became a foundation of her family. And, and then again, it's like you said, people invest in us and, and there's other things that you then can bring into that. I remember one of my mentors said, Dan, every week, date, your wife. And so every Wednesday we had a date night, put it on the calendar. I'd said no to a million speaking opportunities and other great things that I had a date with Dawn. I didn't go Michael, by the way, I'm just dating my wife. So I can't come.
(13:02): I'm like, sorry, I got appointment that night. I can't come and reserve that time. And that investment meant more to her than anything. And then when the, the, the kiddos came along every Friday, we had pizza and movie night. And so pizza movie night was we only ate downstairs in the basement, never outside of the kitchen, except on Friday night, turn the ping pong table into a big, huge picnic table and put the pizza down there. The kids thought they died and went to heaven, having pizza downstairs. They normally don't have, they'd pick the movie out. And that became our time when pizza movie night on Friday nights. And so you suddenly start putting these few little anchors in like your mission statement, date night, family pizza, movie night. And again, I wasn't perfect at everything. I did a few things really well, and I did it consistently over time in with that. God blessed it through that consistency in that faithfulness God's favor came on of developing a game plan and a pattern it's kind of like this. It's like, what's the Britten way? Like, how are we going to do life? And the Britain way was, Hey, we do pizza movie night on Friday. Hey, we have a mission statement. Hey, mom and dad have a date once a week. And that became our way, the Britain way
(14:19): Here said before, where it's like, you know, the systems create, you know, security for teams. Well, it does the exact same thing for families where of a family knows, Hey, every Friday night is pizza night for you guys. You know, we've got our date nights on Saturday night. And they just, when there's that, that level of consistency brings, brings confidence. And then the kids can then be courageous out and about because they know they're loved. They know there's an anchor at home. So that's so good.
(14:46): It, it, it creates expressively fan. I think families, th th th th nuclear family that we need to have boundaries when we have guidelines that actually help create the pathway that they can predict. Like you said, there's freedom in there. There's a lot of flexibility that want to navigate and be open. God's leading, but, but still those become guard rails for us as a family to keep us on the path we want to come. And I, you know, I w I remember that then you go back and you have heart checks. I remember my oldest daughter, Cali was in seventh grade. I was traveling a lot. And I remember the day Corey, I was, I had to serve at a lot of the big sporting events like SCA would come in and we would host a big coaches, outreach or big outreach for the community.
(15:35): And so around the NCAA final four, I would go in out for 12 years in a row. I went to the final four and everyone's like, Oh, you lucky you get to go to the final four. It was like, Oh, we're working, we're working a table ministering to coaches. We're doing outreach lunches. And if you say lucky, that's great, but it was great being in that environment. But I remember being in San Antonio, she's in seventh grade and my wife called and we had some issues. And I remember talking to Kelly standing in the courtyard of this hotel. And I realized like, by me, traveling created more space for her to not be in the guard rails and into wasn't doing the Britten way. And I told her, I said, Kelly, I will quit FCA. So I can be a dad first. And if this is one of those moments, the defining moments for our family, that, that here we moved all the way to Kansas city.
(16:31): So I could take this new job and now travel. And I can't be there for you and is creating problems at home for my seventh grade daughter. Then I will quit FCA and I will get a nine to five jobs so I can be there for you. And this is up to us to figure out is that the us to figure out and I wept with her and cried sitting in San Antonio, not knowing how this was going to turn out, but, but it was a defining moment for her to know what I was willing to risk and what I was willing to give up for her. And she later told me, dad, I just wanted to know how far I could push the envelope. You know, I realized I couldn't push it. As far as I thought, I realized that, Hey, I needed to come back in line and know that you really cared about us. You really cared about me. And I'm telling you that those few things, having them in place, Corey allowed us to redefine how we were going to move forward, to make sure that we put family first. And I tell you that that was a game changing moment, a game changing moment for the Britain family.
(17:36): No, it's so neat. They sharing that story for other listeners that are having maybe those testing boundaries is the freedom and the framework they're kind of getting pushed up against there. Did you see smoke signals coming kind of along the way? You're like, I think I'm going to have to have this conversation one day. I mean, San Antonio conversation, wasn't out of the blue, I bet. In the standpoint that you may have thought, Oh, something's coming. Maybe once I get back from the final four.
(18:01): Yeah. Yeah. I went and joined the final four that year, for sure. But I, yeah, there was a couple along the way, like the idea of some French choices, which obviously for junior high is a big deal. And some of the things we found out and it kind of came more to light. So it was like, we saw a little bit, we thought again, we thought, Hey, it was in control. Was Cali just being seventh grade. She's pushing on envelope a little bit, but it, but it really manifests itself to that. And again, I think we have to be ready. That one, it, when it does show, when it is put into the light that we have to respond and how we'll respond again, it goes back to our, our family mission statement is like, Hey, we got to love God first, am I loving God first in this situation, my daughter, and Hey, I'm going to FEMA put family, even above others.
(18:51): There's a little bit of extra. Like, that's why we put that in there as like, Hey, we want to love others, but me and we put family just to Scotia above the others to know the right below God. And that was the key is like, Hey, Kelly, remember love God and love family. I think that's the most important thing to me is you guys, I'm not willing to risk it and ruin our family for the sake of my job, my calling, I mean, I'm telling you that was a wake-up call. And I think that helped us Corey kind of reset some stuff. And then may we learned from that? So when the other two kids came along, I think were able to navigate and do a better job as parents steering them through that.
(19:28): Yep. That's fantastic. Hey, another thing I want to talk about is the one word, the book, love it. Thank you for writing it. And back to a family thing. That's something that all of us as a family, we each grab a word. And so thank you for doing it. And it's, it's fun to have that. What made you just write that book, going back to when you first wrote it and you, you had a couple of coauthors with you, but what sparked the one word idea in your life?
(19:55): Yeah, I tell you, Corey, it's a, it's a fun little story to, to reflect on it. It actually goes all the way back to 1999, going into Y2K when the world was gonna all melt and the computers were going to shut down. I was living in Northern Virginia, outside the DC area in us, the local staff guy there. And one of our staff guys, Steve Fitz, you and I were invited to go speak down at ocean city, Maryland, a big youth conference with about 5,000 kids. And I think he was speaking to 5,000 kids. I'll speak into like a hundred adults. Like that was my role. That was his world. He's a former NFL player, phenomenal speaker. And we had about three and a half hours in the car and we back then we didn't have Starbucks. So we had just said, Dunkin donut coffee, and we're buzzing down the road and kind of catch up on some stuff.
(20:40): And, and I still remember it was heading into Y2K and, and we actually planned, we actually planned to get together. We actually brought the, the year 2000 together, our families, his family, and our family because of her conversation then. And it was awesome. And realizing that, Hey, the, the, the, the computers didn't melt and the world didn't explode. Yeah. And we're still around alive and kicking. But he said to me, Corey said, he goes, Hey, Dan, what's your one word, vision statement. I never heard that. And I'm probably a lot like you Corey, very driven. I had a seven page word document with all my roles, goals, targets, assignments, everything listed out. And every year I looked through it updated and I'll put it in front of me. I printed it off Nina Dan Britain's game plan. And, and the end of the year, I get like 10% accomplished and be like, great.
(21:32): I'm going to do better next year and do the exact same thing. And really out of frustration of failure, I would keep doing it like, like a dog returning to his vomit. I just continue to go back to that game plan. And so Steve asked me, Hey, what's your one word vision for, for the year 2000? Well, I thought he was asking about my seven page word document. So I went into a big, long sermon about 20 minutes. And one of the, I have these five key roles that I play. I'm a husband, I'm a father, I'm a ministry leader. I'm a friend. Here's my goals. Under each one. I had it all memorized, just, I want to put it into action. And so he let me go for about 20 minutes and Steve is patient and, and again, four minute big former NFL player strong, like crush me with one single pug.
(22:16): Steve goes, Steve goes, you're an idiot. Danny goes, I didn't ask what, what, what for a sermon. I asked for one word. And honestly, I was like, okay, I can, I'll shrink all that down into a cool phrase, pithy catchy phrase, and thought about it. And I give him the one phrase and he goes, Dan, he goes, I didn't ask for a phrase. I asked for a word while I was stumped. So I remember turning it back on Steve, I guess, Steve, what, what fine. Big boy. I go, you're pressing me about my one word. I don't have a word. I have a lot of words. What's your one. What's your one word. And I'm never forget Corey. He said harvest. While Steve lived in DC, Washington, DC, a lot of concrete, like harvest, what do you want to be a farmer? Like what the heck, what the heck is going on?
(23:04): Steve? He said, he goes, Danny goes as a speaker and communicator, young people in he's. You speak to about 150, 200,000 young people. Every year. He says, I want to plant seeds of greatness in the next generation and see a harvest of young leaders rise up. I still get chills. When I tell that story. And I, I was stunned of the clarity in the focus and the power of just one word for him for the year 2000. So he goes, what's your word? And I said, harvest, I didn't say that. I said, I go, Steve. I don't know what my word is, but I go, I need to pray about it. And for the next two weeks I journaled, I prayed. I sought the Lord. I remember one morning during my rock morning, run the Lord almost like dropped a word. It was like, not me, like trying to pull a word out of a hat, but it was like the word intimacy came and realizing I was a mile wide and inch deep in the Lord wanted me to go deep in my relationship with him to get serious about my faith is serious.
(24:12): My relationship with my family is serious about my relationship, my teammates, the coworkers that I work with in Cory, I'm telling you that year 2000 wasn't Y2K. It was the year of intimacy. And that really began a journey over the next 21 years of having a one-word vision. And then surely after that, probably about 10 years after that, we got together with Jimmy page and John Gordon, and we wrote the book and it's just been awesome to see how God has used that significantly around the world. What is your word this year? Well, so my word last year was Hart and John Gordon and I had the same word as the first time. The three of us, each of us had our, a similar word. We usually don't reveal it to each other until like January 1st. And John's like, Hey, my word's hard. I'm like, wait a minute. That's my word.
(25:02): Yeah, but it was really cool. Cause we had a chance all last year to actually encourage each other. Hey, here's a verse with the heart in and a, here's a quote. So it's really interesting with someone with the same word to really inspire each other and motivate each other in stretch each other in that word. And I think last year, Corey, last year I was born into this new year and thinking man, 2020 was a difficult year. It was a good year, but it was a difficult year. Very, very difficult. And I kept thinking there was a lot of difficult things that were planted in the year. 2000, I believe are going to manifest themselves in 2021. So as I was going into the new year, praying and thinking and meditating on my word is I think 20, 21 is going to be very complicated year. So we're going to move from difficult to complicated. And with that, what's better for complication is wisdom is man, Lord, I will have a heart of wisdom. So I, and again, so my word for 2021 is wisdom. And I love what Chuck Swindoll says. Chuck Swindoll says wisdom is seeing things the way God sees things. And I want to see things in 2021, the way God sees things. And so I'm just asking for a heart of wisdom in the year 2021.
(26:17): Thank you very much for listening to today's episode. I hope you are enjoying it so far before we go back to the rest of this episode. I want to share with you my book when at home first, some of you have read it. So thank you very much for others of you. You have not. And I encourage if you're looking for a resource to help you with these times of your work is now in your home and your home is now in your work. And what this looks like. This book is being to many leaders like you, whores magazine said it was one of seven books. Everyone on your team should read in the book is broken up into four different sections to help you versus about you. Understand who you are. The second is marriage in ideas and tips to help with your marriage. Third is parenting and the last is work. So these four different sections to help you recalibrate during this time and to help move forward. So if you are needing additional resource, I encourage you to check out my book went home first. It is available on Amazon as well as audible and so on to the rest of the episode. Thank you very much.
(27:24): Now, also, when we did talk to each other in October and we can edit this out if we need to, because it's, if it's a still confidential, but the speaking of wisdom, you, you were writing a book of that time on Proverbs, which is obviously a book of wisdom. So how's that book coming?
(27:41): Yeah. So it is out, just came out in a tire. Then this concept is great because my friend Ron forceps, so this is a cool story back in. I think it was like, I don't know. It was about at least 10 years, 10, 10, 15 years. Ron was working for organization and I was working obviously for FCA. And it was like, man, our two organizations can partner. What they do for ministries and nonprofits is phenomenal or they're huge. And so when he was working for this organization, we go, Hey, we're going to partner in, this is what we're going to do. We're going to create some resources. We're going to leverage this in Corey. We met probably 15 times and nothing came out of it. It was so frustrating. It was like, how can we not make this work? Every time we came up with something and put it before our leadership was like, no, no.
(28:33): And Hey, no over here, no here. And so we get done. After a couple years of him coming here to Kansas city, I went out there and it was like, we had nothing to show for except the relationship in a friendship. And really God put us together in a very, I would say supernatural way that now we're, we're like best friends. And so Ron called me up. It was over 10 years ago and he said, Hey, Danny goes I want, I want to do this thing called the wisdom challenge with you. I'm like, man, I love that. He says, let's read through the book of Proverbs together. You know, there's 31, Proverbs 31 days. I'm like, Ron, I've done that for years. I've read Proverbs. I know proper day keeps Satan away. Yeah. Got it. Great stuff. And he goes, no, no, no, no.
(29:20): I know I've done that too. But he says, let's do it together. And I was like, Oh, we're going to read it on the phone together. He goes, no, no, no, no, you read it. I read it. And then we text each other and let us know, Hey, what did God revealed to us in that chapter? Proverbs. And now you're sharing with me. I'm sharing with you. It's iron sharpening iron. And now we're going through Proverbs together. I was like, okay, sounds kind of cool. That's fine. I've never done that before. I'm telling you Corey like 10 days in. I couldn't wait to get in God's word. Couldn't wait to see what God was going to be able to me. Couldn't wait to text Ron what God showed me. And I couldn't wait to hear what God revealed to Ron. Was it going to be the same birth was going a different verse.
(30:10): Maybe I can learn from Ron. And it was like a double blessing. It was like I was going through Proverbs like twice a day and getting twice the value because this whole idea of partnering with, right? So the ideas pursue wisdom, partnering wisdom, and then pass it along. Because when we got done with the 31 days, he said to me, okay, you got to go find someone else. You got to pass it on. So we, we made a commitment to pursue wisdom daily. We made a commitment to partner in wisdom daily and now pass it on is now finding someone else. And so I said, man, I'm going to call my son Eli. And I'm going to do it with UI. And man, I mean, I I've done tons of Bible stays with my son. I've prayed with them. I'm having the Holy land with them. And to actually see him the way he looked at scripture and every day for us to share in that it was like a gift from heaven. And so anyways, this little concept of wisdom challenge is a neat thing on the idea of pursue partner, pass it on.
(31:12): Oh man, I love that. And be like, well, whether it was with Ron or with Eli, your son, you get to know what's going on in their life at another level, you know, just, I mean, just the other night on our Sunday night dinners, we liked to say, what are you most excited about this week? And you know, what's God calling into each of the kids and you just hear things. You're like, Oh, I didn't really know that what was going on as we got that, I'm pretty good handle yet. And so it's just neat to see. Well, that's that's fascinating. I'm going to have to do the, the pursuit partner, pass it on for the wisdom. I like that. There's just so much power in spending time in the word and then writing about it. I right now working on my second book and it's this mindset devotional basically because of 2020 was such a roller coaster.
(31:53): Before we hit record, we talked a little bit about just when I lost public speaking, it was a, Oh my goodness, what's happening. God. I thought we were build this business together. Like all these crazy negative thought, jab, the devil start to get in your head, but due to mentors or friends and just my own quiet time, there were some verses that I just kept going back to throughout the year that I just started riding on them. And the idea of, Hey, how could these verses help other business owners when they have these mindset challenges, when the devil's whispered in their ear and all that. So, so much fruit comes out, not just reading the word, but actually how does it apply them to my life right now? And instead of just a quick look at the phone, look at the app, but actually spending time thinking about it and digest. It was with some people's. Yeah.
(32:40): I love, I love that. I th the phrase I like to use on that is lingered longer, right? If we linger longer in God's word, there's some amazing things that come out, but instead we love the one minute devotional. We love to do a quick prayer here and there. And, and I'm not saying that God doesn't love us. If we have a minute, he'll use our minute and doing great things. And I think he loves quick prayers, but I tell you, I think God longs for us to go look, I'm running out of time. Let's pray real long. Hey, I don't have time. Let's linger longer in God's word. And it should be the reverse of it because Hey, things are crazy. We should be spending more time in God's word. We should be commuting more with God versus cutting them back and really shortening that time.
(33:27): We should lengthen that time. Hopefully even during the pandemic, that everyone's routines are off, like every rhythms and routines are out the window. And my hope was, Hey, are we gonna, are we gonna take advantage of these? Hey, we're not traveling as much. We're not buzzing around as much. You have a little bit more freedom with the schedule. While we filling that with times with engagement with God and getting our face in the book, that's the key. And I wanted to go, Hey, I'm going to take it. Take advantage of the pandemic of having more time with God, more opportunity to grow my faith, to come out of it stronger because of that lingering, lingering longer with God lingered longer with the Lord is going to be just a blessing and a favor.
(34:13): Yeah. Yeah. Likewise, 20, 28 spent a lot more time in the word. I know, you know, many people did, which is good stuff. And you talk about your first word of one word of intimacy. That's exactly what God wanted with, you know, from the beginning, it's about an interrelationship as he walked in the garden in the cool of the day with, with Adam and Eve, trying to find him, obviously we know the rest of that story, but, but it goes back just to that intimacy. So I it's great. Dan, another thing I wanted to hit on and talking with you is that I look at my own career, but as I work with other leaders, as things start to evolve, people want to leave their employer and go do something different. Like Oh, I got this call and I think I want to go to this job.
(34:54): Or I I've written a book and I want to leave or I want to speak. But for you, you're an anomaly. You know what I mean, 30 years at one employer. That's you know that that's wild. Unfortunately, you just don't hear about that a lot, but not only have you been loyal to FCA, but in the same time, you've, co-authored six books. Well, and now a seven and done speaking, how were you obedient to God? How did there had to be times in your career? Like, all right, I think I'm out. I think I'm going to talk about John Gord. I think I'm going to follow a path like here's where I'm going to go be a national speaker author. I've got a lot of individuals that will come to me talking about calling. And is it my time to stay or time to go explain little bit of parts in your career there, how you felt that the nudge to leave is that God is that the pizza last night? You know, what is that? And so I'd love to hear kind of your journey.
(35:48): Should I stay or should I go, right? You boy, I tell you, we didn't, we didn't even talk about this. You are, that is like my sweet spot. Like if you want to hit one thing about leadership, probably my greatest pet peeve and leadership is how much we transition, how quickly we're willing to grass is greener. On the other side, like you just went, think you just hit the button. So hopefully you can calm me down a little bit. But one of the things is FCA. We have about 2300 employees in the field in 107 countries. And we hire three to 400 staff every year. And we have new staff training. They come here in Kansas city and we train them and take a week long. We talk about spiritual leadership and talking about the heart, the spiritual heart, a heart of leadership, and kind of pulling back the layers and trying to get them spiritually strong, just not X's and O's of FCA, but more about the heart of leadership.
(36:47): And one of the things I do at the very beginning and before I started talking to them and sharing a vision about FCA ministry, I challenged them on what their definition of ministry is. So a lot of times they're like, wait a minute with sta we already have our vision, mission and values and strategy and methods and all these things. Or do we kind of back it up in one of the things I say all the time to them is if you could define ministry, how would you define it? And I'm telling you, I've in interviews, I've asked hundreds of people I've interviewed and FCA that one question, I've never gotten an answer. So here you are willing to give your whole life to this calling of going into ministry like this word ministry, and you've never even defined it. Like what's your personal definition of ministry.
(37:39): So I actually take them through an exercise before we start talking about FCA ministry. I get what your definition of ministry challenged them to be able to write stuff out. It's just awesome. So it's like a two hour workshop I do with them. And then I say, going back to the one word concept of zipping it down, I go, okay, now if you could take ministry and zip it down into one word, what would that word be? How would you define ministry? And I say to them, it can't be Jesus. We all understand Jesus is the foundation of everything. Don't do the Sunday school answer. Kay. I want, I want to, Hey, let's just assume Jesus is the foundation for all ministry, but Hey, now what is a one word for, for, for you? And I'm telling you, it is awesome to see how God works in.
(38:23): The reason why I do that is I tell them that about eight years into ministry, about 22, 23 years ago, I was, you know, young. I was trying to prove myself. I was saying yes to everything and just wanted to see how God was going to use. I want to be used by God. So of course, yes, to everything. And I remember reading a book called overload syndrome by Swenson. He wrote margin, which is a great book. And he wrote this book called overload syndrome and people write in with problems and they say, Hey, I got this problem. And he, as a, as a, is a Christian psychiatrist would actually reply back to the answer. I remember about page 80 or 90. This lady wrote in, and this is what she said, this was the game changer. She said, Dr. Swinson, I never know if I should stay or if I should go, I don't know if I should move, get a new job, change churches.
(39:24): I don't know if it's too early or too late. I just don't know how I'm able to evaluate if I should stay or if I should go. And I never forget what he wrote. He said, he said to her, go get, go get a handful of Apple seeds and go in the backyard and plant them. And he said, don't move. Don't get a new job. And don't change, change churches until he can yield a bushel of apples off that tree, which will probably be eight to 10 years. I was like, that is awesome. He says after eight to 10 years, if Hey, you're still not seeing things happen to your church. You had the freedom, the Greenlight to go find another church after, after a decade. Hey, if you don't see things working in your neighborhood and things, aren't working out, Hey, maybe it's time to start looking, Hey, job wise, Hey, after 10 years of investing and you feel like, Hey, God's closing doors.
(40:23): Then you have a chance to be able to move on. And I'm telling, I'm telling you, Corey, it was like, God spoke to me. And he said, Dan, you need to start thinking in 10 year increments, not one year, not one month, not one day, 10 years. And so my one word is consistency. Look, I haven't got it. So what made this for me? Consistent biblical definition is faithfulness, but I like the word consistent. I just want to keep showing up every day, show up and feel all the time. Go. You're still not doing FCA. When are you going to grow up and get a real job? I'm like, I don't know. I don't, I don't know what a real job is. I don't know what growing up means, but I'm still doing FCA, but I now think Corey in 10 year increments. So I'm 30 years on staff with FCA just finished up 30 years last year.
(41:12): So I'm three units three. So I count, I count my time with FCA is three. I'm like three, like check, check two. I can't wait to get the form, right? Because now every 10 years I'm coming up saying, okay, God, is this where you want me to? I make a change in my fulfilling, the calling that you've put in my wife and my pleasing you with everything I'm doing. Oh, great hand to the plow. Go down for another 10 more years. Put my hand to the plow. Don't look left. Don't look right. Keep plowing ground. Hey, 10 years later, pop up. Look around God. Am I being used by? You use this where you want me? Is this my calling? Keep going, man.
(41:47): That's fascinating. I love it. I've not honored the 10 years myself, since I've, I've done some job hopping and switching. So I'm guilty. And I know there would be other listeners guilty as well. So one, I think it's just so neat. Your consistency of showing up. How do you handle, like maybe the boredom along the way or the leadership's not doing what I want them to do or they're, you know, they seem scatterbrained at me. I'll go somewhere else. There's better leadership. There's better development. How did you stay consistent during those 10 years when there were, there were for sure. Ups and downs. It wasn't rosy every day.
(42:22): Yeah. I, it's a great point in obviously their seasons being around some leaders. Like I just, Oh my gosh. Like, I don't want this to ever change. Like the leadership dynamic is perfect. You know, other times I, I w I went through a long, a while ago, a situation I just was like, I don't even know if I'm going to be able to keep going with FCI. Like there was a situation that just, it just grew and grew and grew, and it's creating a lot of anxiety. And, and I, I think it's the idea Cory, of, of the hard part is this is you have to control the controllables. And I think where, where we get out of bounds, it's when we stop controlling the controllables, like I can control my attitude. I can control my, my, you know, fun level. Like, Hey, whether I'm going to approach it every day, I can control my disciplines of how I'm going to stay in shape and be ready and prepared and be all that I can be that God wants me to be in.
(43:18): I just realized that if I just get back to going, okay, Lord, I'm going to show up every day, doing the things that I know I need to do to have the greatest contribution for the kingdom. I want to have a kingdom impact on this earth. I want to do everything am. So that means, Hey, I know that literally, like it's not, it's not, legalistics, it's a blessing that I have a two hour morning disciplines that I do every morning. So anytime, wherever I travel around the world or these two hours that now encompasses reading God's word, studying worship music, journaling, running, listen to podcasts, listen to sermons, redeeming that time. I'd love to listen to music, but I want to deem that time and better fill it up with godly knowledge, listening to audio books. And so I have a two hour morning disciplines that, that I just don't deviate from.
(44:08): And I know that if I don't do that, then I'm not going to be the best that I can be to be used by God in the greatest capacity. So yeah, all this stuff around me can change. And I might not like leaders and I might not like the way the respondent and things, but man, if I know that, Hey God, you're allowing me to control the controllables. I'm showing up, making a difference. I'm seeing the winds personally and, and family wise, then that's all I need. That's all I need to know that, Hey, you're, you're allowing me to step into that and do that. And so for me, I just feel like that is significant. That is very significant to build a again, to have that those routines and those disciplines to keep you motivated, to keep you inspired. Like I just can't wait to get up in the morning and just know, okay, another day I get a learn and grow and become a different leader and expand my knowledge so that I can be a better leader for Jesus Christ, man. There's nothing better than that. Everything else is just icing on the cake.
(45:06): Like I do love my morning time when jurors your two hour window.
(45:09): Well, you know, it was interesting. I, I, I had a guy challenged me a long time ago in the start of this. He asked me this guy named Ken. He is a dad and one of my dad's friends and he's an older guy, very respected. He was not like me. He would pray about the clothes. He would lay out the next morning. And you laid out that night before. That is not me. He broke his day into 15 minute increments. I remember Ken had me. Who's kind of mentoring me a little bit. Cause my dad was like, Hey, can we be good for you? And I'm like, Oh my gosh, this guy is not like me. And it was early on in my FCA career. And he asked me, he goes, Hey Dan, when when's your, when do you spend time with God? And I said, well, I get in.
(45:47): And every day a ministry leader, I get it in. I tried to do in the morning, but I've got kids and dogs and cats. And if I don't get it in, then I'll make it in for the launch. Am I get it? And he says, what's the most important time of the day. I get my time with God. He goes, so you mean, you basically are just moving it all over the day and not giving God your best. And I said, I said, yeah. And he said, instead of you saying, when, when do you fit God and why don't you ask God? When does God want to meet with you? I was like, Holy cow. That's a trick question. Because if you ever asked God like, God, when do you desire to meet with me every day? Not, Hey, this is what I'm going to fit you in it everyday.
(46:23): When do I want to meet with God? Who cares when I want to meet with God? The better question is when does God want to meet with you? So he said, and I've, I've worked on a sweat when he said that, because I couldn't answer it. He goes, Dan, take a week, pray about it, come back. So he sat me on this big, huge desk. And you know, he was really proper ever, like, I don't think he had a hair out of place and I prayed. And I was like, Lord, wait, when do you want to meet with me every day? And like, God spoke to me, God said in, in, I usually don't tell people this, but he said 4:30 AM. And I don't think that's a godly hour. So I was like, Lord, are you sure? That's you that's you? And he said, I go, you're going to be up before the dogs up before the cats up before the kids. And that's the freshest quietest time of the day. And I want to meet you at four 30. So came back to him and I said, Ken, he said, when does God want to meet with you? And I said, well, I think this was God. He said 4:30 AM. And I never forget. Ken goes, now it's a question of obese.
(47:24): Yeah, consistency. There you go.
(47:28): Yeah. I say for 12 years and I'm talking about Christmas vacation for 30 double alarm. I just felt like I had to honor that for 12 years. And then God gave me a release after 12 years that man, one day the Lord goes, okay, you don't have to do four 30. I know. I know you want to meet with me every time. So it is early in the morning. So I'll, I'll wake up anywhere between four 30 to six 30, depending on the day, depending on when I get to bed. But it is early. But again, it's really dictated by carving out that two hours of start to finish before anything else happens in the day.
(48:08): And it's good. Yeah, I'm, I'm an early one as well. I like the 5:00 AM and it just, things are quiet, but my mind is also fresh and I can be focused. I also don't look at emails and any notifications before that time, you know, in the morning, otherwise I get distracted. One thing you mentioned about control the controllables and I love how you apply that to your job. And the it's so helpful. I was talking with day with a client here you know, today. And so it, it just kind of top of mind to share it, even for those listeners is, you know, part of that's at home to his control, the controllables, they all get, tend to work with a lot more men. And it's like, well, you know, my wife or my wife, it's like, no, it's you, you don't control the controllables.
(48:50): If you said you're going to be home at this time, be home at this time, you know, be slow to respond. Don't get angry, be calm with the kids. Like all of these controllables. It's like, my kids are this. My wife has asked like, hold up, start with yourself versus control the controllables in the home. And then from there, we can maybe talk about some other things, but it starts with you. And so I love just how you were talking about that with your work and the surroundings that we have at work, but it just made me think. And so for that listener, thinking maybe things aren't perfect at home it's Hey, let's just start with yourself. Let's start honoring your skin, control your schedule. Don't let it control you and start working on those disciplines in your own life. First, just so fruitful.
(49:33): Absolutely. You know, in Korea, it's something else that I think that a good mindset for us is I always thought like my family is counting on me doing this two hours. Cause like we're counting that their dad and my way my wife would go, Hey, my husband is getting a space in the book is spending time with Jesus Christ. He's growing in his walk and I'm counting on him every morning, being a better father and a better husband because he's doing the things only he can do. Okay. So it's a good responsibility. I don't look at that as a heavy yoke, like, Oh my gosh. It's like, there's this they're counting on me. And this is his responsibility. I got curious, it's a joy. It's like, Oh my gosh, no one else can do that for me. And every day I feel this great freedom, but a blessing almost like Lord, thank you for this privilege of allowing myself to be able to grow daily.
(50:35): So I can even be better as a leader to my kids into. And even my coworkers, my coworkers are counting on me as a, as a spiritual leader of growing daily, having fresh man up now pulling out a bunch of old manna every day, counting on that. They're depending on it. They're depending on me showing up every day going man, Dan has been with Jesus, not like, Oh, Dan was with Jesus a week ago. He goes with Jack is see that Dan was a Jesus today. If we could have that understanding that our kids in our, in our spouse, in our coworkers, one us to be with Jesus, they're counting on us being reduced. Then that changes everything.
(51:17): Yep, absolutely. And I know there's, you know, there's days I may miss something or I don't get to the gym or quiet time. My wife can see it saving. My wife is like, you need to get to the gym or, you know, yeah. Going out and go now, I mean, this has been and this has been a blast. So thank you so much for your time. I could keep going, but I just have to do a part two, but Dan, what's the best way for people to get ahold of you.
(51:41): So easy is, is there was a couple of websites. I mentioned wisdom, challenge.com or one word website is get one word.com one word. And then on social is at FCA. Dan. So folks who is basically FCA Dan it's easy one and you can follow me on social. And then they, even, my email is just firstname.lastname@example.org. So it's really easy, simple to be able to communicate in and get ahold of me
(52:07): And great. Well, thank you so much for your time today. And yeah. I look forward to continuing these conversations down the road.
(52:15): Yeah, of course. Thanks for your ministry. I tell you, it's just a joy that, that there's someone that's committed to, to the family, to the home and realizing that, that again, if you put family first, nothing else matters. Put family. If you don't put family first, nothing else matters because your whole life's a train wreck. So it's the most important thing. And for someone to be a champion in that, thank you.
(52:39): Oh man. Thank you very much. Appreciate it. I want to thank you for listening to my podcasts. When at home first, I am so grateful to hear from listeners like you, that this content has been helpful. So now I would love for you to pay it forward. I want to get this message in the hands of more listeners. We need leaders to be winning both at home and at work, especially during this time. So please take a minute to share this episode with somebody you think would find value in it, as well as rate and subscribe as a thank you, please visit my website at corymcarlson.com to download a free resource that people are finding value in. Thank you very much.
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