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200-Year Plan – How to construct a plan – 2

ADDENDUM as of 2/5/09: While I am still excited about the materials I discuss in this post, it is with great sadness that I feel compelled to note I have discovered there are reasons for caution with respect to the sources referenced herein. With respect to Vision Forum Ministries, I call your attention to the series of articles at Ministry Watchman and Jen’s Gems. And with respect to Geoff Botkin, see Who is Geoffrey Botkin? at the Under Much Grace blog.

[Continued discussion of Vision Forum Ministries' program titled The 200 Year Plan: A Practicum on Multi-Generational Faithfulness.]

I find it difficult to think even five years ahead. So how can I begin thinking 200 years into the future of my family? One secret: just begin! Start writing! Read the rest of this entry »

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200-Year Plan – How to construct a plan – 1a

ADDENDUM as of 2/5/09: While I am still excited about the materials I discuss in this post, it is with great sadness that I feel compelled to note I have discovered there are reasons for caution with respect to the sources referenced herein. [Indeed, though I don't think our daughter, who is mentioned in this post, was aware of the depth of the issues, clearly, she was "on the alert." --I guess I'm suggesting you, too, should probably be on the alert.] With respect to Vision Forum Ministries and Doug Phillips, I call your attention to the series of articles at Ministry Watchman and Jen’s Gems. And with respect to Geoff Botkin, see Who is Geoffrey Botkin? at the Under Much Grace blog.

[Continued discussion of Vision Forum Ministries' program titled The 200 Year Plan: A Practicum on Multi-Generational Faithfulness.]

Start talking about a 200-year plan, and you may find yourself faced with some major opposition! Here’s the story of my first opposition. Read the rest of this entry »

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200-Year Plan – How to construct a plan – 1

ADDENDUM as of 2/5/09: While I am still excited about the materials I discuss in this post, it is with great sadness that I feel compelled to note I have discovered there are reasons for caution with respect to the sources referenced herein. With respect to Vision Forum Ministries, I call your attention to the series of articles at Ministry Watchman and Jen’s Gems. And with respect to Geoff Botkin, see Who is Geoffrey Botkin? at the Under Much Grace blog.

[Continued discussion of Vision Forum Ministries' program titled The 200 Year Plan: A Practicum on Multi-Generational Faithfulness.]

Sadly, the Vision Forum CD set I purchased provides a sanitized (indeed, in my opinion, overly-sanitized–to the point of being useless) PDF view of the spreadsheet Mr. Botkin showed his audience as he discussed how he built his family’s 200-year plan. (The spreadsheet displayed in the CD shows no headings, no titles, no data at all. It consists, solely, of a grid with a few of the rows and columns colored in. Period. That’s it!)

After persistent attempts to get the company to provide me an example of what Mr. Botkin’s original audience saw, a member of their customer service department wrote back, “The slides originally contained personal information which has since been removed at the request of the speaker. I apologize for any inconvenience that you have experienced and I am sorry that I am currently unable to help you further in this area.”

To their credit, they offered me a refund for the entire CD because this one set of PDFs wasn’t up to par with what I would have hoped for. But I wanted the information more than a refund! So I attempted to contact Mr. Botkin directly in order to acquire a readable example of the spreadsheet and at least an exemplary sample of the data he had developed for his family’s 200-year plan. I was thrilled when he graciously provided what I asked for. I am only now beginning to work through the implications of what he showed me.

Rather than burdening you here with a full rundown of what Botkin sent me; indeed, considering how little I think I really understand the plan, I am numbering this post as #1 in a series. I have no idea how many more posts will come nor how quickly. But let me at least begin working through with you where I am going with our family’s 200-year plan.

*****
Perhaps the first and foremost most important feature of creating a 200-year plan as I’m urging, here: it creates a sense of time.

Botkin says he first acquired his own “long view” sense of time when he was a young man and Read the rest of this entry »

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Overcoming generational amnesia

Chapter 6 of Beating the Midas Curse by Perry L. Cochell and Rodney C. Zeeb is prefaced by a quote from V.S. Pritchett:

“In our family, as far as we are concerned, we were born, and what happened before that is myth.”

And then the authors comment,

For most of us, the quote above rings true. We know a lot about our parents. A little about our grandparents, and next to nothing about our great-grandparents. Even if you have done some genealogical research on your family tree, for the most part, it is just that: names and dates on the branches of the tree. . . .

Read the rest of this entry »

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The 200-Year Plan: The Family “Toledoth”

ADDENDUM as of 2/5/09: While I am still excited about the materials I discuss in this post, it is with great sadness that I feel compelled to note I have discovered there are reasons for greater caution with respect to Mr. Phillips than I was aware of at the time I first wrote this post. I call your attention to the series of articles at Ministry Watchman and Jen’s Gems. There is much more, if you care to search. I believe these sources should provide warning enough.

–A continuation from Keeping the long view.

The word toledoth is the Hebrew word translated as “generations” in such passages as Genesis 2:4, 5:1, etc., in the King James version of the Bible:

  • “These [are] the generations of the heavens . . . “
  • “This [is] the book of the generations of Adam . . . “
  • “These [are] the generations of Noah . . .”
  • “Now “These [are] the generations of the sons of Noah, Shem, Ham, and Japheth . . . “
  • And so forth.

According to Wilhelm Gesenius’s Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testamament Scriptures, toledoth means “genealogy” or “pedigree” or, “As a very large portion of the most ancient Oriental history consists of genealogies, it means . . . history.”

Strangely, Doug Phillips uses this Hebrew word as a key component in the title of his second set of presentations concerning a 200-Year Plan, two presentations he described as “The Family Toledoth.”

He mentions that toledoth means “generations,” but then, Read the rest of this entry »

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