Big God, Big Dreams
- Thursday, October 23, 2008
“There is no magic in small plans. When I consider my ministry, I think of the world. Anything less than that would not be worthy of Christ nor His will for my life.” -Henrietta Mears
Fear runs rampant when the economy takes a downturn. Everywhere we turn, we encounter bad economic news. The tendency is to hunker down, play it safe, and think small. Pursuing dreams is something one does in good economic times, right?
We need to be wise, not foolish, in the life choices we make. And yet, we must resist the temptation to think that God and His unlimited resources are affected by the mortgage industry, the unemployment rate, and the stock market. God is still sovereign, all-powerful, and completely capable of supplying you with all you need to do what He calls you to do. Perhaps what you need today is a fresh invitation to pursue a God-sized vision for your life.
What is “Christian Vision”?
Vision, as we are using the term, refers to the God-given ability to picture things in our minds that are not yet reality. For example, a couple envisions opening their home to foster children. A college student visualizes herself treating patients after completing her education to become a doctor. A woman pictures how her artistic gifts could be used to bring hope to children in a low-income neighborhood. A vision is a picture or idea of how God could use your gifts and your life to meet needs and accomplish his purposes.
“Christian vision,” explains theologian Os Guinness, “. . . is inspired directly or indirectly by the call of God. It is an act of imaginative seeing that combines the insight of faith, which goes to the heart of things below the surface, and the foresight of faith, which soars beyond the present with the power of a possible future. This combining of the not-yet-combined is the secret of visionary faith. . . . Dreamers of the day come into their own and stay on course when they follow the calling of Christ.”
Two Keys for Moving from Vision-less to Vision-Directed
In our career counseling practice we sometimes meet people who have a vision for their lives, and are seeking coaching to help them make their dream a reality. More often, however, we find that Christians have no compelling vision of what God is calling them to do with the time He has given them on this earth. They may feel stagnant, frustrated, depressed, bored, underutilized and purposeless. So how can you move toward a purposeful life that uses your gifts to make a difference in this world?
The first key is to risk enlarging your perspective of how God wants to use your life, allowing yourself to envision a “God-sized” calling. Such a calling is one that you cannot accomplish with your own power and resources. A God-sized calling, by definition, requires God’s power and resources to succeed. God has given you gifts and abilities to be used in your family, your neighborhood, your career, your church, your community, and the world at large.
The visions that God creates in our hearts and minds are always beyond what we feel is possible. As Andy Stanley says, “The task always appears to be out of reach. And the reason it appears that way is because it is. God-ordained visions are always too big for us to handle. We shouldn't be surprised. Consider the source.”
The second key is to risk taking steps of faith to discover God’s vision for your life. Many of us live as though we are waiting for God to send us his vision for our life via fax, e-mail, or a supernatural revelation—spelling out the actions we are to take in step-by-step detail. We also may want this divine message to include an ironclad guarantee that we will be safe from risk, financially secure, and successful in others’ eyes as we carry out this heavenly plan for our lives.
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