Covering your Six and Asking the Right Questions


I was talking with a friend the other day and he told me about the military saying; ‘cover your six.’

It has to do with your vulnerability of not being able to see all around you. That is why the military is trained to cover each other’s back because of the lack of sight. Covering your six is explained in the following example:

Fighter pilots use the metaphor of sitting on the middle of a clock face to indicate the relative location of other aircraft. In other words, an enemy could be at 12 o'clock (straight ahead), at 3 o'clock (perpendicular to your path, on the right), etc. Add ‘high’ and ‘low’ and you get three dimensions. A famous book and movie were titled ‘12 O'clock High’ indicating the location ahead of, and above, the pilot. So, your Six is what's directly behind you, the most dangerous enemy location. Cover your six means to protect yourself, and it means someone other than yourself has to do it for you.

The other issue I want to address today is about asking the right questions. Another friend of mine just retired from Andersen Windows where he was a window engineer for the past 36 years. He told me about FEMA and the impact it had on window design. He went on to explain the once a window was designed it was put through the FEMA process to find out how successful this window would be in the various types of climates. Here is an explanation and a great example of asking the right questions:

Also called: potential failure modes and effects analysis; failure modes, effects and criticality analysis (FMECA). Begun in the 1940s by the U.S. military, failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) is a step-by-step approach for identifying all possible failures in a design, a manufacturing or assembly process, or a product or service. It is a common process analysis tool.

‘Failure mode’ means the ways, or modes, in which something might fail. Failures are any errors or defects, especially ones that affect the customer, and can be potential or actual.

‘Effects analysis’ refers to studying the consequences of those failures.

Failures are prioritized according to how serious their consequences are, how frequently they occur, and how easily they can be detected. The purpose of the FMEA is to take actions to eliminate or reduce failures, starting with the highest-priority ones. Failure modes and effects analysis also documents current knowledge and actions about the risks of failures, for use in continuous improvement.

Why am I bringing these two concepts to your attention? Because they are techniques of discernment. I believe the most important gift today is the gift of discernment. Why? Simply because of the days we live in. There was a time when deception was in its infancy, and you could live your life in a way that if you hung with a good group of people in church, listened to strong men and women of God, you would be less likely to need a constant dose of discernment. However, today with Social Media, the news media, and the incessant push of the enemy to bring destruction to this world, it is absolutely critical for us to develop discernment.

Let’s go back to our concepts today.

Cover your six. This concept is about not being able to see in all directions. Our enemy knows this and has masterful tactical skills to attack you from your blindsides. No matter how great your walk with the Lord may be, you still need others to ‘cover your six.’ This is why the church/a body of believers who take seriously the study of the scriptures is so important. In our human limitations our sight is best at 12:00 noon, and it gets less through the peripheral vision scale down to 9:00 on the left and 3:00 on the right. We are all blind beyond those points.

Reading, studying, praying and talking to other faithful believers helps you to ‘cover your six’ to those blindsides the enemy loves to attack. Let me get personal for a moment. We were blind when COVID-19 hit, most people never discerned what God was saying to us through this pandemic. We were blindsided when George Floyd was killed and the riots ensured. These issues, without getting conspiratorial, were ways God was speaking to us, but we were quick to put on the masks, distance ourselves, quarantine, and blame racism for George Floyd’s death. We have now developed a culture of fear (COVID-19) and a culture of blame (all police are bad and everyone is a racist). Our society is like a boat without a rudder … no direction and no discernment. (I will pick this up in asking the right questions)

Asking the right questions is probably as important as anything today. I always ask myself, am I asking the right questions? The short article on FMEA is probably the best tool I have come across in decades. Why? It asks the right questions. Let’s start with asking how our Republic can fail? Here’s what John Adams had to say about democracy:

Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide. ~John Adams

Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other. ~John Adams

When using a FMEA technique to ask the right questions, we would have to take into consideration that John Adams is saying:

1. People abuse democracy and will lose the will to keep it.

2. People need to have a moral base in order to keep a moral society. Law in itself will not be able to hold back the evil around us.

Those two statements will be worth their weight in gold to you if you understand them. It is what we are experiencing today in America. We are experiencing the early stages of the death of the Republic and the right questions should start at the big “WHY?”

The answer is quite simple. It is found in our complete neglect of God in the process of building a secular society without Him. Just remember the most basic understanding of life, and if you get this right, you will never live in confusion. Are you ready?

Life designed by the Creator, was never designed to be lived without Him. ~Larry Kutzler

Our current social issues are all based upon not understanding this principle. This is not an excuse or a simplistic sectarian viewpoint, it is the truth.

1. George Floyd’s death: No God, no respect for life.

2. COVID 19: No God, no peace, no safety.

In both of these cases the right questions will bring clarity and truth. “How did we fail God’s laws and precepts?” and, “What is the Almighty God trying to say to us?”

Simple answer: “Come back to Me with all your heart, mind, and soul.”

Challenging the Culture with Truth … Larry Kutzler


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