Leaders Have Vision

After spending all his funds in attempting to begin a video production career, the young man of twenty-two years of age had to decide where to go to escape the bill collectors. He decided to go to Hollywood where his brother was convalescing from a serious illness. So he spent his last $40 on a first class train ticket to California. As he observed the country side, an older gentleman sat down beside him and asked him where he was going. The young man responded, “I am going to Hollywood.” The older gentleman replied, “And what is your business in Hollywood?” With a big smile, the young man responded, “I’m going to direct motion pictures.” “Really,” the older man queried, obviously surprised by the response. “Yes,” the young man continued, “I’m going to direct great Hollywood motion pictures.” That young man was Walt Disney! His success began, as is most often the case, with a vision.

Leaders have vision.  Christian leadership is all about God’s vision carried out thru us as we follow Him. One man says a leader is a person who knows the road, stays ahead, and pulls others with him.  Another definition says, “A leader is one who sees more than others, farther than others, and before others.”

George Barna says: “You might define vision as foresight with insight based on hindsight. This definition underscores the importance of looking to the future, emphasizes the significance of possessing a keen awareness of current circumstances and possibilities and notes the value of learning from the past.”

Vision comes from asking the right questions. Where do I want to go with my life? What do I want to accomplish? What does God want to happen in the life of my church? A clear vision gives us focus.

An old saying on effective leadership says, “A person creates a vision and then his vision creates him.”

Brian Harbor writes about three steps to take in order to create the right vision for our lives?

The first step is to examine our passions. What do we love to do? Bestselling author Jim Collins discovered that the “Good to Great” companies he describes in his book did not select some goal and then say, “We need to get passionate about that.” Instead, they determined what they were passionate about and then they did that.

The second step is to evaluate our gifts. What are we good at? Excellence grows out of competence. And competence comes when we exercise our gifts. Nothing is more counterproductive than doing things well that we should not have been doing in the first place. Doing the right things is more important than doing things right. Churches need to always evaluate to make sure that what they are doing (strategy/ministry) is working and reaching people.

The third step is to explore our opportunities. What avenues are open to us? The New Testament writers distinguish between chronos time and kairos time. Chronos time is simply the passing moments of time. Kairos time is a special moment in the midst of the passing moments of time. Paul has these kairos moments in mind when he warns the Christians at Ephesus: “Be very careful, then, how you live – not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity” (Eph 5:15-16a).

An important part of leadership is creating the right vision because, the old saying is true: “A person creates a vision and then his vision creates him.”

Keep the Son in Your Eyes,

Mike James

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