Thursday, February 22, 2007

"No plan ever survives first contact with the enemy"

To encourage one another to be more faithful in our spiritual disciplines, our church recently kicked-off covenant groups. In our first meeting, I read an article by the first Princeton professor, Archibald Alexander, where he points out how making specific plans can help us grow in grace.

Another powerful cause of hindrance in the growth of the life of God in the soul is that we make general resolutions of improvement, but neglect to extend our efforts to particulars. We promise ourselves that in the indefinite future we will do much in the way of reformation, but are found doing nothing each day in cultivating piety. We begin and end a day without aiming or expecting to make any particular advance on that day. Thus our best resolutions evaporate without effect. Is it at all strange that that person who on no day makes it his distinct object to advance in the divine life, at the end of months and years is found stationary?

Each person in our group was to make some specific plans as a beginning in the fight against the flesh. By now those plans have made first contact with the enemy and I wonder how many have survived. The fight against sin is constant, so if your original plan is lost, plan a new one. As Gen Patton has said, "a good plan today is better than a perfect one tomorrow."

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