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Monday, March 7, 2011

Flight Plan

If you are a parent, you have probably asked at some point where the instruction manual was to your child.  I know I sure have.  Parenting is hard work and as Christians we seek to "bring them up" according to God's word, but we sometimes struggle to understand how to apply the biblical mandates we find there.

Well, I think I have found exactly the tool those of us who are raising sons need to aid us in the most important job of raising our sons to become faithful men of God.

Audra Jennings with the B&B Media Group sent me a copy of Flight Plan:  Your Mission to Become a Man by Lee Burns and Braxton Brady.  Brady is the chaplain of Presbyterian Day School in Memphis, TN and Burns is the headmaster of PDS.  Flight Plan was the response of Burns and Brady to many requests by parents to expand their year long curriculum Building Boys, Making Men beyond the 600 plus boys they serve at PDS.

What is unique about this book is that it is written directly to the young boys (middle school and high school aged).  The format of the book includes discussion questions at the end of each chapter to help the guys reading digest the information a bit further.  Burns and Brady encourage the boys reading to discuss the book with their fathers, mentor, coach or someone they respect.

The layout of the information is appealing with the use of pictures, bullet points and cool graphics.  The information is thorough and draws directly from the Scriptures allowing the boys reading to understand the foundation of the ideas taken directly from God's word, our most important "manual" for life.

These guys cover just about everything one could possibly think of when it comes to the many roads a boy must travel in becoming a man.  They corrolate the ideas in each chapter to that of a flight plan a pilot might have and do an excellent job of relaying the importance of actually having a plan rather than flying by the seat of their pants. 

Hear Burns' and Brady's heart for the reader in these words:
"God designed you to live a fulfilling and purposeful life as a teenager  and a man.  Your choices make a difference in the life you lead and experience.  Realizing the purpose and fulfillment God has in mind for you depends not simply on following certain advice and rules, though that's part of it.  The most important thing is developing a personal relationship with God.  It is experiencing fellowship with Him and the fullness of His love.  It is having a heart for the Lord.  God wants your heart more than merely your words or behavior."
From promotional materials for the book:
"How do you go about casting a vision or plan for what manhood should be ?"
"Flight Plan teaches the definition of manhood, that a real man glorifies God by seeking an adventuresome life of purpose and passion as he protects and serves others.  This definition of manhood, along with seven biblically-based virtues, serve as the foundation for a vision of godly manhood.  We take readers through each virtue:  the true friend, the humble hero, the servant leader, the moral motivator, the bold adventurer, the noble knight, and finally, the heart patient."
Flight Plan is so detailed and full of practical wisdom for our boys.  Burns and Brady do a really good job of not just giving a lot of information, but of giving the reader actual ways to implement the ideas into practical ways to glorify God and serve others.  They truly leave no issue untouched.  I especially appreciated the chapters that covered how to treat girls, dating, and sex.  Burns and Brady are candid in the chapter on sex, but handle the information in an informative and very helpful way.

I highly recommend this book!  If you have a son or a grandson, YOU NEED TO GET A COPY OF THIS BOOK!  It is certainly a resource that I will tuck away and bring out again when my now 5 year old son is around middle school age.  Flight Plan would be a perfect resource for use between father and son, youth boys and their leader, or in a discipleship relationship.

Flight Plan can be purchased at by following the link below.