Thursday is for Vision
You are listening to song and one of the lyrics speaks so powerfully to your soul that you are instantaneously brought to tears.
A preacher is preaching his heart out and a phrase in his exposition of the text speaks so clearly to your heart that you almost hear the audible voice of God, “this is for you.”
A scene plays out on the movie screen that strikes you as so accurate to life that you want to tell everyone about it.
Sometimes it is a positive joyous experience and sometimes it nearly breaks your heart. I had one of the moments at the conference I just completed with Dynamic Church Planting International this last week.
A friend, (God used you LB.), was talking about how his vision for church planting, specifically, a movement of multiply church planting-churches was energizing his heart. I was with him. The discussion was about the goal of planting 350,000 to 450,000 new churches in North America over the next 20 years. That goal, if achieved, would double the number of churches in North America and would reach countless millions for Christ. And then he said it.
My Baptist friend said he went back to a denominational leader in his tribe and shared some of the vision and was greeted with these words,
“Now LB, we don’t want to have a pep rally
before we have a plan.”
Some of the 50 church planting leaders in the room laughed. Some wanted to weep. Some did weep. Some did both. Some nodded knowingly about how their own dreams and visions of a grand and glorious work of God was doused by the waters of some one elses doubt, or the rainfall of inappropriate caution, and faith-less, too-early-attention to detail.
For me that was a moment in the conference when my spirit wanted to weep over the tragedy of short-sighted leaders who think it is ALWAYS their job to cry out for details when the need of the moment is passion and enthusiasm and prayer.
I immediately wrote the quote down, and since I neither wanted to know who said it nor did I want blame to be placed on any particular person for it, I simply attributed it in my notes as …
“Said by Every Movement Destroyer in History.”
Is it important to work out the how-to steps and the plan of how a dream is going to be realized?
But frankly, any fourth rate mind can point that out. “Ahh, don’t we need a plan?”
And nearly anybody can criticize a dream or vision for some great work as too big, too impractical, too hard, too expensive, too big for us, or otherwise bring in a fire-hose of water to douse the flame of zeal.
But please, for the sake of the dreamers and visionaries that God gives to the church, can we give them a little room to breath so that they might lead us to a better, more Christ-exalting, people transforming future? The dreamers need the planners and the strategic thinkers and the nuts and bolts people that God has also placed in His Church. But without the dangerous dreams and “unrealistic” visions of the dreamers, the zealots, the entrepreneurs, the enthusiasts, most of our plans will only produce status quo, small, incremental change and they will be very human-sized.
The people of God need more than that. The culture needs more than that. God desires more than that.
God wants to radically transform our world. Let’s stretch ourselves in faith and attempt some things that are absolutely doomed to embarrassing failure if He doesn’t show up and rescue us. When we do, He, not us, will get all the glory.