It has been five years since we posted on theologyforthechurch.com. First, the site was taken down by an unknown malicious actor and it took time to put the pieces back together. Then life got a bit cray-cray, what with Covid and book deadlines and such. Something had to be set aside for a bit and this was that. Though we are not ready to “jump in with both feet”, we are dreaming of the day when Theology for the Church will once again be an active tool to share the gospel and disciple the church.
Each January, Penny and I schedule a coffee date to calendar together, review the year past and plan for the year ahead. We ask God for wisdom as we say yes to some things and no to others. Though we welcome God’s divine interruptions, we also want to plan to live with God’s purposes in mind. We want to balance ministry life with home life, allow time for our relationship with God, our relationship with each other and with our children and grandchildren. We want to allow time for building friendships and serving our church as well as the broader community where God has placed us. Having both reached the momentous age of 65 during 2023, we can squint our eyes and see in the far distance the lights of home! (At least we think it’s far ahead; it could be close and we are just going blind!) Scripture tells us to “number our days” and that recognizing the brevity of life helps us live wisely. Which basically means, life is short – pay attention, live wisely!
Planning is a spiritual exercise. God is a planner – he has a plan for his creation and for each of us. “For I know the plans I have for you – this is the Lord’s declaration – “plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jer. 29:11) He told us, “commit your activities to the LORD, and your plans will be established” in Prov 16.3. While we are making plans for the year, we remind ourselves that “a person’s heart plans his way, but the Lord determines his steps” (Prov 16:9) which means we trust God when the unexpected changes our plans. We trust the unseen hand to guide or redirect our steps when He wants to send us in another direction. Our purpose on this journey of faith is to finish the course and fulfill the ministry we received from the Lord Jesus Christ; to testify to the gospel of God’s grace (Acts 20:24) in the academy, in the church, and in our personal relationships with family, friends and neighbors.
Will you join us in asking God for wisdom to make the most of our time in 2024 and plan our calendars accordingly?
Father, this year let us see you more clearly, love you more dearly, walk with you more nearly,
Happy New Year!
Ken & Penny