Thursday, 12 January 2012

Looking for Vision?

I recently happened upon an article by John C. Maxwell on vision.  Please read it to understand what I'm about to say. I wasn't sure about everything he said, but much of this article I understood from experience.  Maxwell begins his article with a few very important questions.  "Where does vision come from?  How does a leader develop a clear vision for the future?"

It seems to me that Maxwell puts vision and leadership together, and the more I think about, the two go hand in hand.  Leaders have vision.  In order to be a leader, you have to have a vision.  Who will want to look to you if you don't?  When I look at my generation, this is something that is greatly lacking, and the church is no exception.  Youth are wandering around with no clear direction, no vision for the future and are content to settle for the mediocre.  It often grieves me to watch their lives.

I understand what Maxwell writes about feeling your way through the dark.  That's the hard part.  The thing about vision is, it's not clear in the beginning.  For a long time, I have believed that God has something much greater in mind for my life, but I couldn't see what it was.  I still can't, but I do believe he is beginning to shed some light on it and show me what He wants from me.  He does that you know.

Isaiah 42:16
"And I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know,
in paths that they have not known I will guide them.
I will turn the darkness before them into light,
the rough places into level ground.
These are the things I do,
and I do not forsake them."

God doesn't always give us the full picture right away.  Sometimes He sheds just enough light for the next step.  I'm experiencing this in my life right now, and it's scary.  I don't know where this path in front of me will go, and I don't always know if I can handle what's ahead, but he gives the grace to get through one day at a time.

Maxwell believes that passion is the beginning of vision.  I had to think about this, but I think I agree.  It reminded me immediately of an article I wrote a few months back called "What Do I Do Now?".  I  have concluded that a part of the reason so many single young women are discontent is because they don't have any meaningful task they love to pour themselves into.  Until they have a love for something, a work that they can pour themself into, something they truly care about, they likely won't have vision.

I really liked how Maxwell said "Desire alone is surely not sufficient to develop a vision."  This is so, so true.  He explains that our knowledge and abilities must be complemented by passion in order to make a difference.  And passion, a desire alone for something, won't get you very far if you don't have the necessary knowledge or skills. 

A verse that has meant a lot to me recently is Proverbs 19:2: "Desire without knowledge is not good, and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way." (ESV)  I read this when I first began to learn about vision and it's place in my life.  It showed me that I needed to develop certain knowledge and skills if I wanted my dreams to fly.  But ultimately, passion is what will drive your vision and make it a reality.

A lot of people wander through life because they don't know what they truly want and they don't have anything that drives them.  It won't always be clear at first and sometimes you'll have to feel through the dark, but until you have discovered those things, you will not have vision.  So find out what it is.

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