Over the past six days, I have had the privilege of being able to come out and visit everyone here at Achord. It has been great to see each person again and talk with them about vision, what God is doing, and where God is leading them. As Mike would say, “It’s an exciting time to be alive.” I couldn’t agree more.
In deciding and praying about what in the world I was going to write on, I kept coming back to “vision.” I suppose it’s the freshest thing on my mind at this point, having talked and schemed all week on that specific subject.
What does it mean to steward our vision?
First, let’s talk about stewardship. My computer’s dictionary says it means to “manage or look after.” This concept is very present in the Christian life and if you haven’t seen it, you might want to look into this a bit. As a believer we have been given much. We have not earned anything. Paul addresses this idea to the Corinthian church. Jesus talks about it a number of times through his parables.
The most well known parable on stewardship is probably the Parable of the Talents. In short, a wealthy man gives three of his workers a sum of money to look after while he goes away on a long trip. He leaves and each stewards their money (manages). The first two make a profit while the third just buries it for fear of losing any of it. The wealthy man returns and praises the first two but then condemns the third because he did not steward the money effectively
If we have dreams, it means that we have been given these dreams. So in being given these things––just like any talent or gifting––we are expected to steward them and steward them well.
I think that if the Lord gives us dreams or vision for something, then, like everything else that we have been given, we are to manage those things accordingly. Now, I think that stewardship is different from total fulfillment (vision-wise). I don’t believe that ultimate fulfillment is our job. I believe that is God’s role. Stewardship implies “the managing of.” Fulfillment implies “seeing the completion of.” Now, hold on to your horses and let me explain that.
“Vision”––as I am defining it––is an over-arching idea or theme that one can apply themselves to.
For example’s sake, let’s discuss Paul. I would say that Paul’s vision was not to preach to the Gentiles but rather, to see all Gentiles come to know the Lord. Preaching was a way to achieve that vision. Usually a vision––as a whole––is a humanly unattainable idea that can, in small steps, begin to be fulfilled. Not all the Gentiles that Paul preached to came to know the Lord, but many did. In that respect, the vision was fulfilled, and yet it wasn’t. Do you get my drift?
Here’s another example: one of my visions is to see the redemption of the arts in culture. That’s a very broad statement––but that’s what a vision is. Breaking that down: In order to redeem the arts you must first redeem the artists because the pieces of artwork are merely reflections and symptoms of the artist’s heart. So taking that in even further, a way of doing that is by building community amongst artists and musicians through say, a coffee shop or a cafe. Through that community, relationships are built. Relational evangelism and discipleship takes place, thus redeeming the artists in culture and in turn, redeeming the Arts in culture. The vision is fulfilled––to an extent––but ultimately, it isn’t––it’s up to the Lord to fully do that and complete it. Understand?
Part 2 is coming on Wednesday.