The Grounding of Vision (part seven)
We’re seven installments into an examination of the role and nature of vision in leadership.
We’ve considered how a compelling vision has the power to call us through the difficulty and discomfort of our own transformation; transformation in you that’s essential for the vision to become reality. We evaluated the urgent need for the Church to be alive, awake, and influential in a culture that—as Edwin Friedman observed—is chronically anxious. I challenged pastors to focus vision on those outside the Church. Not on those within it. Then, we looked at the essential interplay between the vision of leaders and followers necessary for people live into change.
“Grounding” means the soil—the dirt—in which vision is planted … and from which it springs.
Only vision that emerges from the revealed will of God, via God’s inerrant Word is legitimate for the Christ follower. When leaders take it upon themselves to concoct notions of a preferable future to which they’re committed it’s doubly disastrous.They’ve deceived themselves and who follow. This is one reason why Christian leaders face harsher judgment.
Consider James’ warning: “Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts…” [Jas 3:1,5a]
Ever observed a religious ceremony in an arm of the Church different than yours…and been bewildered by the “peculiar-ness” (I’m being polite) of whatever it was they were doing?
Ever had a denominational executive explain why their particular denomination exists, and what prompted it to sever relations with whomever they were aligned before? Did the explanation make any sense at all in advancing the cause of Christ in the Earth?
Have you ever questioned the motivation behind sprawling mega-church complexes where up to $100 million gets poured into elaborate buildings and beautiful grounds—that, for all practical purposes only benefit believers?
Jesus’ vision was grounded in the Father’s will. Nothing else.
“…the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.” [Jn 5:19]
“Father…take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” [Lk 22:42]
And, if you hadn’t noticed, the Father apparently was not interested in bizarre religious rituals, political hair-splitting, and self-eggrandizing empire-building.
The grounding for vision, yours, your church’s, your ministry’s, your denomination’s can only be the Scripture. Now, I don’t mean an obscure proof-text here and there. I mean the whole counsel of God. [Act 20:27]
The grounding of vision is the Word of God. Nothing else will do.
The Grounding of Vision part seven.docx