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Archive for November 13th, 2018

So, what happens when the vision fades? Or changes? Or dies?

What happens when the vision perishes?

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Proverbs 29:18 reminds us that

“without a vision, the people perish.”

Those are frightening words to the ears of those who believe that the vision has faded. And when the horizon is no longer in view, it can seem as though the future plan is no longer attainable, in reach.

Whether we are talking about the vision of one person, a family, a school, a church, a business, or a nation, there can be times when unexpected events, failures, tragedies and sins that hide our ability to imagine and see the vision fulfilled. This can be devastating, heartbreaking and hopelessness can ensue.

There can be times when we think that only our human intervention can allow the vision to be fulfilled.

Humanly we might even say:

  • it is impossible
  • God must have changed the vision
  • God gave me the ability, so I will fix this

Those excuses sound very familiar. They remind me of the story of the promise, or vision, that God had given to Sarah and Abraham. When Sarah believed that it was impossible (physically) for her to conceived the child that God had promised, she took matters into her own hands, perhaps thinking that God had changed the manner of delivery of his promise (Genesis 16). The result was that Abraham slept with Sarah’s maid, and a baby was indeed conceived, but Sarah knew, as soon as she saw the growing belly of her maid, that she had done wrong (reminiscent of Adam and Eve, and their fruit tasting in the Garden).

Oswald Chambers, in his devotional My Utmost for His Highest, spoke of faded visions beautifully …

“God gives us a vision, and then He takes us down to the valley to batter us into the shape of that vision. It is in the valley that so many of us give up and faint. Every God-given vision will become real if we will only have patience. Just think of the enormous amount of free time God has! He is never in a hurry. Yet we are always in such a frantic hurry. While still in the light of the glory of the vision, we go right out to do things, but the vision is not yet real in us. God has to take us into the valley and put us through fires and floods to batter us into shape, until we get to the point where He can trust us with the reality of the vision. Ever since God gave us the vision, He has been at work. He is getting us into the shape of the goal He has for us, and yet over and over again we try to escape from the Sculptor’s hand in an effort to batter ourselves into the shape of our own goal.”

I am not a patient person … I expect that most of us are not. And when we have a vision of what God is going to do in our lives, the lives of those we love, our work, our church, our community … the lack of patience in us makes us desperate, hurried, and impatient to allow God to work the details out in his perfect timing.

The visions that God gives do not change! They just do not take place in the time frame that we anticipate … God is not in a hurry … ever!

“This vision is for a future time.
It describes the end, and it will be fulfilled.
If it seems slow in coming,
wait patiently,
for it will surely take place.
It will not be delayed.” 

Habakkuk 2:3

 

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