Tag Archives: vision

Be Thou my Vision

Bible Journaling Art by The Jesus Chick

Proverbs 29:18

Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

One of the very familiar verses often quoted from the Bible, and quite often completely out of context. I have no doubt been guilty of the same. But this morning this verse caught my attention and gave me the desire to dig a little deeper into its meaning for my own personal application.

I consider myself quite the visionary when it comes to life. I love new and exciting adventures and I’m open to the Lord’s leading down unfamiliar paths without hesitation. The problem with me is that quite often it’s a Shari vision, not a God vision. So those paths have many times lead to disaster!

The Word of God is a book like no other in the world. It’s the living, breathing, Word of God that can speak life into its reader. Another book may excite you, and inspire you, but it can’t speak life. It’s also why we shouldn’t read the Bible in a haphazard manner as to take scripture out of context or apply our own definition to it.

When Proverbs 29:18 is quoted, the word “vision” is often thought of as a prophetic vision that renders itself to personal direction. But in this context vision is “an inspired revelation of wisdom from God.” Which may be personal direction, but in its full context, which people tend to ignore, it is followed by “keeping the law.” So… when you take someone like me who is apt to be a free spirit, the law has a connotation of control. And that doesn’t fit well with my application of the freedom of vision.

I’m somewhat telling on my rebellious heart. But it’s good to be real, because it will help you and me both. Nothing is worth doing unless it is the will of God. And the will of God will never be outside the Word of God. So if we want the reality of it, we can’t just say we have a vision without searching the Word of God for the truth of His will. Woah… that’s a pretty deep thought for me.

2019 is on the horizon, and I have big plans, as always. But are they God’s? Good question.

Three points for me to ponder, and perhaps you as well, from Proverbs 29:18

Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.

No Instruction leads to Destruction

Proverbs 1:5

A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:

I received a call from my good friend Dewey last week, who asked if I minded some counsel. The Lord knew I was in need of it, and He even sent the messenger, so who am I to say no. And so I listened. But I’m not always that wise. Some of my greatest failures in life have been not seeking or heeding the counsel of others. It’s not that I feel I know best. It’s usually that I just don’t know and I’m too excited to slow down.

But not today. Today I’ve taken it slower and asked God for some insight into the vision He has given me for 2019. The year of our Lord 2018 has been quite difficult. For more than the obvious health reasons. I had an appointment with my cardiologist today and was discussing the frequent, steady chest pains that cause me concern. After listening to me, and running the appropriate tests, it was discovered that I’m under too much stress. Shocker! 2018 has been filled with stress, and I need a reprieve in the coming year. That will require some changes in the vision of The Jesus Chick Ministries.

First… I need to treat it like a ministry. Not a hobby.

Godly Instruction leads to Construction

Council can often be constructive criticism, and that’s okay with me too. So long as it leads to construction and things get built rather than being torn down. The problem with my ministry is I’ve been building it alone, and as God told Adam, it’s not good for man to be alone, or woman as the case may be. I’ve partnered with many others in their ministry work, but I’ve soloed my own, missing the counsel of Christ where He told the disciples to go two by two.

So I need to build my ministry so that it’s more productive. I need to expand my ministry reach, and believe God that my ministry work will be rewarded with financial provision; which has been most of the stress of 2018. I need focus. I need counsel. It’s why I appreciate ministry friends like Dewey who love me and feel comfortable to follow the leading of the Lord to say things like, “slow down.” Or encourage me to seek a 501c3 which would make the Jesus Chick a bonified ministry for contributors and provide me with counsel through a board of directors.

Vision is God’s Provision for the Journey

And so I search His word for direction.

Proverbs 12:28

In the way of righteousness is life; and in the pathway thereof there is no death.

There is but one job one pathway for me, and the way of righteousness is through Jesus Christ alone who will be my vision. There is a song written by Ian Lynn entitled “Be Thou My Vision.” It’s words stir my soul today.

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart
Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
Thou my best Thought, by day or by night
Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word
I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord
Thou my great Father, I Thy true son
Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise
Thou mine Inheritance, now and always
Thou and Thou only, first in my heart
High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art

High King of Heaven, my victory won
May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heav’n’s Sun
Heart of my own heart, whate’er befall
Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all

And so that’s my prayer today. “Be Thou my Vison Lord.” I seek not riches or man’s praise, I seek a pathway that will allow me to share Christ through the talents that God has given me.

I covet your prayers and would love the privilege of praying for you.

The Impact of a Vision

Psalm 35:15 ~ The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and His ears are open unto their cry.

I will warn you in advance, I’m excited! I’m at a prayer conference in Marietta, Ohio, listening to some awesome men of God preach the Word of God, as well as spending the week with some of my favorite people, the Marietta Bible College students and President Myron Guiler. Marietta Bible College isn’t your typical higher education institution. The higher education factor is the Lord Jesus Christ and He doesn’t govern too many colleges and universities in this era of time. So for someone who longs to feel the presence of God in a powerful way this is the place I want to be.

I took so much away from the conference last night, but to encourage you today I’ll give you a three point message to chew on for a while as I have since last night.

Habakkuk 3:2 was Preacher Chuck Herrald’s text.

O LORD, I have heard thy speech, and was afraid: O LORD, revive thy work in the midst of the years, in the midst of the years make known; in wrath remember mercy.

One of my favorite texts is from that same book, Chapter 2:2

And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon the tables, that he may run that readeth it.

A Vision Looks Forward

Habakkuk said that when the vision was read, he may run that reads it. That’s because a vision is exciting! Or it should be. It has limitless potential to see great and amazing things happen. I want that. Not for me, but for the Lord’s glory and for an opportunity to make a difference.

A Vision Leads Followers

It’s a simple message, and yet so profound, and seems to be so lost in the churches of America. We’re so busy leading programs, we’ve forgotten about the work. I’ve been on this road for 21 years and in the “Midst of these years” I grow weary of not making more of a difference in more lives.

The second message from Preacher Dan Lamb, was from the book of Matthew 14:22-29, when Jesus and Peter walked on the water. The preachers question was this, “What if Peter didn’t believe he could,” what would have happened? That thought sickened me. How many times have I failed to believe in myself, and more importantly in what the Lord could do? And who might I have influenced with that disbelief. As leaders we need to lead in the right direction!

A Vision Lights the Fire!

Oh my stars, does it ever!!! Praise God for great leaders such as those of Marietta Bible College who for decades have impacted countless countries for the cause of Christ because someone had a vision. Dan Lamb encouraged the students last night to “Take what they’ve learned back to their country and share the gospel of Jesus Christ, and then come back to America and share their heart with us.” He closed by saying, “America doesn’t need any more junk, we need more heart.”

What a great truth, and what a spark it has ignited in my soul!

Not Everyone Likes a Dreamer

the dreamerNot everyone likes a dreamer. At least that’s what I’ve come to discover. Dreamers make some folks real uncomfortable because they think outside the nice tidy boxes of life. Well… I’ve always been a dreamer. Sometimes, I must confess, those dreams have been the far-out plans of the flesh, but many, many times they’ve been the secrets that God has whispered to my soul and then when I spoke them aloud the world didn’t understand. Sometimes I don’t think the secrets of the soul are meant to be spoken… I think God says, let’s keep that between Me and you. And then other times I think God says “tell’em, let them think you’re crazy until I prove otherwise.” That’s kind of where I’ve been for a few years now.

So you say… how do you know that God said it? Because in the well of soul lies this vision that when I drink of it, it quenches my thirst, and I know that only God can do that. So this morning I read the story of the dreamer Joseph and my soul drank of that water and whether or not you think I’m crazy I want to try to encourage you with God’s word.

Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age: and he made him a coat of many colours. And when his brethren saw that their father loved him more than all his brethren, they hated him, and could not speak peaceably unto him. And Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it his brethren: and they hated him yet the more.

Genesis 37:3-5

That coat of many of colors heaped a whole lot of trouble on Joseph. I don’t think that was Israel’s intent. It was a gift. And when God gives us a gift, it’s for our good; but often times the world doesn’t see it as such, especially if you’re an outgoing personality who likes wearing bright colored britches and things that bling. Well… that’s me. And while I’ll not label myself the caliber of person that Joseph was, for I am far beneath his caliber of character, I will put myself in the category of dreamer and visionary. And if Joseph the dreamer can spend 13 years undiscouraged in the house of Potiphar, sold into slavery but elevated to position, I’m pretty sure I can survive this time of being a dreamer in waiting.

Don’t give up on the dream. That was the words of God that I read this morning as I sat here ready to give up, because waiting is never easy. Don’t you give up either! Read the story of Joseph, his wins, losses, adversity and victories, and cap it off with the story of his forgiveness. Don’t begrudge those who don’t believe in your dream, just remind yourself that God will use it for His glory and you’ll be a part of the plan!

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