Proverbs 29:18 (KJV) “Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.”
I truly desire to please God! My “Vision” is to be more like Jesus. The success of my “Vision” depends on two areas – My Priorities & Focus – and these must be developed!
Developing a proper focus to promote the success of our “Vision” is critical. Maintaining it is compulsory.
Psalm 105:1-4 (KJV) “O give thanks unto the LORD; call upon his name: make known his deeds among the people. Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him: talk ye of all his wondrous works. Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the LORD. Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore” (Emphasis Added).
These are my “Life Scriptures!” In December of 1968, the Lord revealed these Scriptures to be both the confirmation and the course of my calling. I know that my “Vision” must be in harmony with God’s heart for this Scriptural mandate to be fulfilled in my life. My “Focus” will either undergird or undermine my “Vision.” Let us review the importance of “Vision” once again…
A vision is the dominant factor that governs your life.
It determines all the choices you are making.
It’s what’s left after all the layers are peeled away like an onion.
Clinging like glue to the inside of your rib cage…
It’s what your mind naturally gravitates toward when it is not legitimately concentrating on something else.
It’s … what determines your friendships and your relationships that you are cultivating …
It’s what your prayers are about–what you dream about and are giving money toward.
— Phil Grant, Leadership, Vol. 15, no. 3.
I believe in, and enjoy, a personal intimate relationship with the Father through the Man, Christ Jesus! As with any relationship, it can be taken for granted or the relationship can be kept inviting and invigorating. It requires effort to keep the relationship fresh. It is NO different in our relationship with God.
“I keep my attention on God in a simple, loving way. This is my soul’s secret experience of the actual, unceasing presence of God. It gives me much contentment and joy.” –Brother Lawrence, in The Practice of The Presence of God
We need God’s help to be able to “see” Him, and others, more clearly. Pay attention to the lesson of “Spiritual Vision” in the following…
John 9:1-7 (KJV) “And as Jesus passed by, he saw a man which was blind from his birth. And his disciples asked him, saying, Master, who did sin, this man, or his parents, that he was born blind? Jesus answered, Neither hath this man sinned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be made manifest in him. I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. As long as I am in the world, I am the light of the world. When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay, And said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing” (Emphasis Added).
John 9:35-38 (KJV) “Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and when he had found him, he said unto him, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered and said, Who is he, Lord, that I might believe on him? And Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and it is he that talketh with thee. And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.” (Emphasis Added).
Pay close attention to the process that Jesus brought the blind man through to give him “vision.” Jesus healed the man’s “vision” of …
A) Self – I wonder what the man thought when he saw himself for the first time in the pool’s reflection? We need to “see’ ourselves more clearly in the reflection of the Word of God.
James 1:22-25 (KJV) “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed” (Emphasis Added).
“Hans Christian Andersen wrote of a mirror that made every good and pretty thing look bad. Many of us have the same distorted view of life. Good looks bad and bad looks good. We must come instead to the true mirror of the Bible and see things as God sees them. Then we shall see them as they truly are.” — Robert C. Shannon, 1000 Windows, (Cincinnati, Ohio: Standard Publishing Company, 1997)
B) Others – Once the man could see himself clearly, he looked upon others as they really were, not as he had imagined. We too must look upon others as God does. This can only happen after we’ve seen ourselves as God see us.
John 4:35 (KJV) “Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest” (Emphasis Added).
“The modern world is said to have made discipleship harder. But it has also made evangelism easier. Today’s world is said to be multiplying crises all around us. But we must never forget that, for the gospel, each crisis is an opportunity.” — Billy Graham, addressing the National Association of Evangelicals’ fiftieth anniversary convention (March 5, 1992)
“The world has more winnable people than ever before … but it is possible to come out of a ripe field empty-handed.” — Donal McGavran
C) Jesus – I wonder what the man thought when he “saw” Jesus, His Healer, for the first time?! Once we have encountered the saving power of Jesus Christ, we will “see” ourselves, others, and God more clearly. What I find interesting is the man defended Jesus BEFORE he “saw” Him!! I have no doubt he had a love for his fellowman after he received his “sight,” that was not present before!
1 John 4:20-21 (KJV) “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also” (Emphasis Added).
“It is no wonder that in 15 years of asking high school students throughout America whether, in an emergency situation, they would save their dog or a stranger first, most students have answered that they would not save the stranger. “I love my dog, I don’t love the stranger,” they always say. The feeling of love has supplanted God or religious principle as the moral guide for young people. What is right has been redefined in terms of what an individual feels.” — Dennis Prager in Good News (July/Aug. 1993). Christianity Today, Vol. 37, no. 12