Life Notes—August 29, 2013
“Where there is no vision, the people perish; but he that keeps the law, happy is he.”
Proverbs 29:18 (King James 2000 Bible Translation)
Many organizations have a Vision Statement which answers the question, “What do we want to become?” A good vision statement looks ahead and describes a desirable future. It establishes an inspiring dream for people to rally around and work to achieve. Vision statements guide the way forward, like a lamp on a dark path. They help refocus efforts on what is important, especially when less-important issues distract us. Many individuals develop a personal vision statement for the very same reasons. A vision statement reminds us of who we are, whose we are, and what we hope to become. In the woodlands of life, vision is about the forest so we do not get lost in the trees.
In 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr., established a dynamic vision for society with his “I Have a Dream” speech. It reads in part:
“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.’ I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.”
The dream of Dr. King was a vision of racial equality and social justice. It was deeply inspiring at the time and remains so today, over fifty-years later. It established a grand picture of the future, one we continue to work towards today.
In his essay, Foresight as the Central Ethic of Leadership, Daniel Kim writes, “…without vision, our people suffer death by a thousand paper cuts.” He describes how those with no vision wander aimlessly to their graves, engaging in activities with no meaning. He calls them our “walking dead.” The writer of Proverbs tells us people perish without vision. Unfortunately, the guiding vision for many is simply to get through the day. We stumble through our weeks with an eye on the weekend. Surely, we were not created in the image of God to succumb to such low expectations.
As Christians, we received a vision two thousand years ago from Jesus. It is to love one another. Like Dr. King’s Dream speech, the Bible lays out ambitious goals for which to strive. Those ideals give meaning to our days. As with all good visions, the Bible and the Dream speech lay an inspiring path before us to travel the rest of our days. Those types of visions keep us focused on purposes larger than ourselves.
Tom will be preaching downtown where Life worship is at 10:00 in Brady Hall and traditional worship is at 8:30 and 11:00 in the sanctuary. Mitch is preaching at the west campus where contemporary worship is at 9:00 and 11:00.
Come home to church this Sunday. Come dream with us.
Greg Hildenbrand, Life Music Coordinator