Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail

Whoever coined that little saying, got it right. Making a plan and working a plan can make all the difference on so many fronts in our lives from the physical to the relational to the spiritual.

For over a decade now I have followed a plan of one sort of another of daily Bible reading that ensures I will read through the Scripture from Genesis to Revelation in the course of the calendar year. Elsewhere in this blog I have made my case for this discipline outlining 16 reasons why it makes sense to give oneself to such a practice. You can read that post here.

Rather than repeat myself, I want to direct our readers this year to an excellent post by Justin Taylor called Bible Reading Plans for 2012. It includes motivational, practical, and multiple options on the subject. My favorite link is to The Bible Reading Plan for Shirkers and Slackers, a must for anyone who considers discipline a four-letter word. I considered inserting the link but decided I wanted to make you click through to JT’s blog to do so in hopes that you will read more than just the one option.

I am taking my New Year’s messages on January 1 & 8 from Acts 20:32 which says this:

And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

I will argue for our greatest need in 2012 and beyond to be twofold – seeking the Lord in prayer and hearing/reading His word of grace. Why not get a leg up on application for these priorities by settling now on what plan you will pursue in reading through the Bible in 2012?

In choosing a plan we are far more likely to succeed than if we don’t.

Preventing Provoking

This Saturday our Oxford Club for Men meets at 7 AM at the church office. We will continue our discussion over Richard Phillip’s book The Masculine Mandate.

Chapter ten deals with our keeping role of disciplining our children as godly men.

Here is a taste from the chapter, some excellent words relating to not provoking our children to anger as Paul prescribes in Ephesians 6:4

In order to avoid provoking our children to anger, we must be fair and judicious in placing demands on our boys and girls. We should not be personally abusive (agian, all abuse  undermines rather than enhances authority). I want my children to think of themselves with God-given dignity and self-respect, and this requires the proper praise and respect of their father toward them. Here’s a rule I try very hard to follow: I will always be on my children’s side, even if I am punishing. I will never be against them and I will never speak to them with contempt (pp. 117-18).

Lots more good stuff where that came from. Look forward to digging in with you on September 17 for breakfast, fellowship, and study.