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But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.
1 Timothy 5:8
Today’s post has something of a personal note to it. I’m usually pretty big on operational security, but that requires me to stifle quite a bit of information that I wish I could share with Prepper Recon readers. But, some moments in life I just have to share. My wife and I are about to have one of those moments. Any day now, we’re expecting our first child.
This dramatic change has caused me to spend a significant amount of time pondering what type of father I want to be. In light of today’s verse, I’ve been thinking about how prepared I am to provide for my baby.
Financially, I feel like I’m doing the most with what God has given me to work with. My wife and I practice what we preach. We live below our means, we look for deals, we seek out value, and we stick to our budget. We have a strong work ethic, which always pays off. Additionally, we faithfully give as the Spirit leads, and God has rewarded us for it.
But, when I consider today’s verse, I can’t get away from the thought that providing for my family goes far beyond making sure their physical needs are covered. I think Paul is talking about much more than food, clothing, shelter, and financial security. I have the responsibility to be the spiritual leader in my home, and to be present in the lives of my wife and baby.
Proverbs 22 tells us that parents have the responsibility to train up a child in the way he should go. I’ve harped about the evils of farming out our children’s education to the atheistic American public school system. And for years, I’ve challenged folks to consider homeschooling. I’ve talked the talk, now it’s time to walk the walk.
Besides all of that, I want a close relationship with my child. I want to go fishing and camping, to play games, and have fun. I want to listen, to give advice, and to help my baby discover the wonders of God’s world.
Back to what I mentioned earlier; let me be a little more clear about what I mean by strong work ethic. My typical work week averages around 60 hours. Those hours are divided between writing books, research for books and podcasts, marketing books, the various publishing tasks that revolve around the books, such as working with cover designers and editors, maintaining Prepper Recon, answering emails, booking podcast guests, recording and mixing the podcasts, the various accounting tasks associated with all of those activities, and writing the Sunday Prepper Bible Study.
Since Prepper Recon began five years ago, my beautiful wife has been nothing but supportive. As the task list has grown little by little, and consumed more and more of my time, she’s never complained a bit. Even when it’s 10:00 or 11:00 at night when I finish working, she’s usually waiting for me to have dinner, and always there with a smile, a kiss, and a kind word. She supports the business by doing all of the editing for the website and heading up the editing efforts for the books. After church on Sunday, we usually spend the day together, but during the rest of the week, she gives a lot and gets very little time in return.
With the baby coming, I can’t ask her to share the one day a week that we have together. If I’m going to be the father and husband I want to be, I’m going to have to cull out some of the things on my plate. My goal is to reduce my work week to 50 hours so everything can be accomplished in 5 days and I can dedicate the weekends to my family.
One thing I’ve decided to do is to cut the Prepper Recon Podcast back to once a week instead of twice a week. This one move is going to free up 3 to 4 hours a week. I’ve spent a significant amount of time over the past two years learning and trying new things when it comes to marketing for my books. I’m approaching the stage where I’ll be able to reduce the time I spend testing strategies and tactics and implement a scheduled marketing plan based on what I’ve learned. I’m hoping this will cut another 2 to 3 hours a week.
Beyond these things, I’m going to be taking a look at my current projects and seeing which ones are most effective and which ones are having the least impact. Podcasts are easy to measure because I see the number of downloads for each episode. My metrics for books are great because I have not only the sales numbers, but I also get email from book readers everyday.
What I don’t have is a way of gauging how many people are reading the Sunday Prepper Bible Study. I get an occasional comment on the website, but nothing else. So, I have an easy favor to ask, which will help me evaluate the reach. If you are a regular reader, send a quick email to email@example.com. Just put Bible Study Reader in the subject line. You don’t even have to write anything in the body of the email. In fact, if I get a ton of responses, I probably won’t be able to read them all anyway.
I’m going to take a few weeks off from writing the Sunday Prepper Bible Study to take care of my wife while she recovers and to spend time with my new baby. My wife is going to be busy with the baby and won’t be able to edit for the next four weeks anyway. And trust me when I tell you that these posts would hardly be legible without her excellent editing skills. Afterwards, we’ll assess how effective this study is at reaching folks, and pray about whether to continue the weekly postings.
I want to be sure my efforts are focused and that I’m not spending valuable time on any project which could be better used elsewhere. After all, the only difference in a flashlight and a laser is focus. I want to live a focused life, to faithfully provide for all of my families needs and effectively propagate the message God has given me.
Thank you so much for reading.
God bless and Happy Prepping,
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