Posted by John Pethtel

What I would like to do here is to try to persuade you to set aside time each week in the coming year to plan—and specifically to plan your life of prayer and devotion and ministry. The bulldozer of God’s Spirit often arrives at the scene of our heart ready to begin some great work of building, and he finds that due to poor planning there are piles of disordered things in his way. We’re not ready for him.

In order to make sure that we are ready for the great work that God is ready to do in our church, we will be using the ESV Study Bible reading plan for those who wish to engage in Scripture reading in 2012. We will not be posting the daily readings on our website this year but there will be multiple ways to follow along (RSS, Twitter, print copy).

The ESV Study Bible reading plan offers four sections of reading everyday:

Psalms and Wisdom Literature
Some of the greatest poetry of all time, these books are full of Spirit-inspired wisdom, Godly principles, praise and exultation toward our faithful Creator.

Pentateuch and History of Israel
As we read about God’s covenant with Israel and their constant failure to obey it, we gain perspective on our need for a savior. We also see the origin of salvation through faith in Abraham, and countless records of our Lord’s miraculous power.

Chronicles and Prophets
Amidst the turmoil of  Israel’s disobedience, the Prophets emerge as God’s chosen instruments to point us toward our Messiah and the hope of a new and better covenant.

Gospels and Epistles
Jesus. Our Savior destroys the power of sin forever. The early Church is filled with the Holy Spirit. Saul of Tarsus is transformed into Paul the Apostle and chosen by God to embolden us to an obedient life in Christ under the freedom of our faith.*

So my plea to you is that you set aside time each week to plan, especially to plan your life of prayer and Bible study. Give some thought how God might want to use you that week in a special way. Plan the letters you need to write, the Bible verses you want to teach your children, the visit you want to make, the book you want to read, the neighbor you want to talk to, etc.

*From the Journey St. Louis Engage Scripture page.

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