The Heart and the Fist

The Education of a Humanitarian, the Making of a Navy Sealby Eric Greitens

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Founder of The Mission Continues,

Eric Greitens was inspired to launch the organization by his experience visiting Marines and soldiers who were wounded in combat after returning home from service in Iraq. Without exception, each service member expressed an unwavering desire to continue serving their country, even if they could no longer do so in the military.

Today, The Mission Continues has operations in cities across the country. Veteran volunteers, alongside non-profit partners and community leaders, work to achieve critical objectives such as improving community education resources, eliminating food deserts, mentoring at-risk youth and more.

Special thanks to my wife for encouraging me to read a book…just to read a book! No outlines here, no string of posts with notes and questions for discussion (the Table of Contents is provided for reference only).

This is a book that should be on the required reading of everyone in the military and those who work for humanitarian support agencies. Eric Greitens takes us on a tour of humanitarian and military hotspots around the world and provides an even-tone, introspective view of how individuals affect change around the globe. It’s not an almanac that tries to cover everything, just some highlights provided in a well-written, enjoyable read.

It should be required reading for the military because the author reminds us of why we wear the uniform and he does so from a position of humility without ever waving the flag. As a Navy SEAL, he is entitled the respect of many just for wearing the badge and serving with honor, but this is not flaunted nor is it brandished about as if the badge alone demands respect–he has earned his place at the table.

Those who work for humanitarian relief organizations will gain some valuable insight into why the military is their ally and how they can be partners in the effort to help those in need around the world. We need to work together, communicate better and serve with a common purpose.

Throughout the book, Greitens demonstrates the great need for humanitarian efforts to continue and he makes the case that there is a time and place for the military to take up arms to defend those who are defenseless. The wounded warriors that read these pages will walk away with a sense of honor that they deserve, with a respect we all have for their sacrifice.

I greatly appreciate Greitens’ inspiration for The Mission Continues. These men and women are far from being done yet. They may be physically wounded, but what they have learned and the heart they have for being an effective part of the cause agent for positive change is nothing short of remarkable.

Thank you Mr. Greitens for sharing your story. Thank you for encouraging all those who have served in the Armed Forces of this great country that chooses to involved itself for humanitarian needs regardless of the motivation. My prayer is that we would all learn to appreciate those who have such a heart for people, that we would learn to look at others as brothers and sisters and not projects or numbers. Thanks for the perspective.



Table of Contents

  1. Mind and Fist
    1. Iraq
    2. China
    3. Boxing
  2. Heart and Mind
    1. Bosnia
    2. Rwanda
    3. Bolivia
    4. Oxford
  3. Heart and Fist
    1. Officer Candidate School
    2. Seal Training
    3. Hell Week
    4. Advanced Combat Training
    5. Afghanistan
    6. Southeast Asia
    7. Kenya
    8. Iraq

Epilogue: The Mission Continues




Thoughts about serving others

This link includes a list of posts about Serving the Least, the Lost, and the Lonely.

My prayer is for you to join me on this journey. Subscribe to this blog below to get an email when a new post is available.

Let the Word evoke words. May your life encourage lives.

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