Vision as a foundation for
a life well lived,
a ministry well performed and
a business well delivered.
Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians’ (1:18) is that they might see the purpose to which they have been called, and then to understand how God empowers his calling through both his gifts in us and the power of his spirit.
To appreciate the power and relationship that vision has to the rest of our lives let me introduce you to a progression that I first learned from Pastor James Ryle. The progression goes like this.
From Vision comes Passion
From Passion comes Discipline
From Discipline comes Risk.
This is not the only way for us to express Passion, Discipline and Risk, but it can be argued that in our personal lives and our organizations, including businesses, churches and ministries, this must be the way we operate. This can be best illustrated by acknowledging the dangers of starting without a God-given Vision.
Risk without Discipline is Recklessness
Discipline without Passion is Legalism
Passion without Vision is Hype
Vision without God is Futile
In this, we see the downside of an unrewarded life which the Bible warns us about… lives spent in Recklessness, Legalism, the frenzy of Hype, and Futility of dissipation. In Luke 19:11-27, Jesus gives us the Parable of the Talents. There, we see ourselves as the servants left behind to tend to the master’s work. Two servants have purpose, but one lacks Vision, Passion, Discipline or a willingness to take Risk in order to fulfill the important work that his master has left him. The result is judgment for the one, but an increased responsibility for those who are found to have followed the vision of their master.
As in Paul’s prayer for the Ephesians, it all starts with God’s vision. Success or failure is determined by how well we internalize that vision through our willingness to be passionate, disciplined risk-takers. Applying the gift and empowerment that God has given us by ultimately taking action puts us in a place of great faithfulness. But if we do not commit ourselves to the process of Vision, Passion, Discipline, then Risk places us at great peril because the result is a life lived in fear of the outcome. To live in victory, we must uncover the eyes of our heart and be enlightened. To do this, we must walk down a road inspired by God’s vision. Without walking down this road, we try to shortcut the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and jump to the end without the enlightenment of our Father’s presence.
Since our motivations are as important to God as the outcome, we see in Passion and Discipline the time of character-building that shapes our storehouse of wisdom used to inform our actions and risk-taking.
My last thought is to walk this path with a diverse godly group. God placed different talents in all of us so we can complement, protect and inspire each other. Enjoy the journey as much as the outcome. Share the Vision, Passion, Discipline and Risk with others so you will have friends around to share the reward with. At BMCFerrell we want to be good stewards of your Vision by committing to walk with you through the process: Vision. Passion. Discipline. Action.