Posted by: JennyRain | February 7, 2010

Capturing Vision: A Holy Transplant

Before listening to my usual Sunday broadcast, I traipsed over to the NCC morning webcast.

Let me tell you, there is nothing better than the double-header of Batterson and Solomon! Talk about knock-your-socks-off Sunday morning inspiration. Whooo doggies!

For the last few weeks and especially since reading Primal – my heart has really been pulled to listen to an NCC sermon so I finally did.

Today, Pastor Mark talked about Vision.

This caught my attention because it has been a theme of this week – well – the last six months actually. Several girlfriends and I are going through a lunchtime study called Pathway to Purpose and I have strongly recoiled from talks centering around “God’s purpose for my life.”

My recalcitrant attitude centers around the fact that I strongly believe God has given every single one of us a foundational purpose:

Love God. Love others.

That’s it.

So if we are loving God and loving others in what we do, we are doing what we are designed to do.

Kindof.

The rub comes in when you look at Matthew 28.19-20

Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you...

See the dilemma?

There is a theological trifecta in Christ’s very last command here on earth that takes loving God and loving others to a new level of responsibility.

All of a sudden, I am given the responsibility to express the love of God in specific, tangible ways here in the universe through the Great Commission. This new information leaves me quite consternated because I am unable to stand on my original theory that loving God and others is where my responsibility ends.

The Great commission to go, baptize, and teach others about the Great Commandment is the expression of my love of God and others.

Thwarted again.

So back to Pastor Mark and how all of my rambling connects.

Mark emphatically stated that we all have a purpose or a vision that is God-given. My study leader Heidi said that earlier in the week. I almost succeeded in talking Heidi down unlike Pastor Mark who was appearing to me through a one-way Webcast transmission without a chat room.

D’oh!

Mark talked from Habakkuk 2.1-3 which states:

I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts;  I will look to see what he will say to me, and what answer I am to give to this complaint. Then the LORD replied: “Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald may run with it. For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it;  it will certainly come and will not delay.”

Habakkuk believed that God had a word for the complaint that he had presented God with.

Habakkuk believed so strongly that he was willing to go up to a watchtower and WAIT for God to answer. Scripture does not tell us how long Habakkuk waited for God on the watchtower, the highest point in the city, only that he waited. It does not tell us what Habakkuk did during his waiting period – whether he performed another job (that of a watchman for the city he was guarding perhaps), whether he prayed, or weather he just sat in perfect stillness and waited.

Pastor Mark states several things about this passage, two of which I’ll cover here (1) often our visions will come from our complaints; and (2) Often our visions come while we are at a place set apart for God where we can hear from Him.

(1) My watchtower is my time away with God. I do not have a particular place like I used to – just a “hidey hole” somewhere where I can be alone with Him. I gotta have my hidey-hole time as much as possible – it’s like breathing.

(2) The problem is, I do not have a lot of complaints – sure I have my daily “life” issues that God is dealing with me on – but these issues are personal and can’t really be generalized into a societal clarion call to muster the troops. They are just things I struggle with personally.

The other problem is that I have been striving for contentment for a long time, moving towards specific goals in my life, and many of them I have reached. I feel incredibly blessed by all of the prayers God has answered in my life – wow – just to think about them is mind-blowing. But if I’m honest, I have reached this wonderful place where I am really CONTENT and PEACEFUL.

If I examine my life, I have seen how both contentment and vision-seeking have been valuable character building tools in my life.

So what do you do when you are (a) spending time in your watchtower actively seeking and listening for God and (b) very content with the vision that God has already brought to pass in your life?

(c) You remain befuddled.

That is where I am now. I know that listening to both Heidi and Pastor Mark’s encouragement about vision inspires me. I have written enough vision statements, helped others write theirs, and seen the importance of personal vision as it is translated into transformative action. I get this vision thing.

I am just wondering where mine is.


Maybe a clue is in this part of Habakkuk where God says “write down the revelation

God’s vision comes as revelation. Hence the importance of time alone with Him and the importance of standing at the watch tower (standing implies alertness, being ready to go when called).

So maybe this revelation God talks about is like a Holy Transplant where what we have known, what we are experiencing, how we have been living is replaced with something God-created.

Perhaps just as a body receives a heart transplant where the new heart is then connected to the old veins, arteries, and ligaments that held the old heart in place, so too a Holy Transplant is where the desires and dreams we have carried around with us are given new life as they are connected to the heart of God.

Scripture promises us that in him we live and move and have our being. So perhaps being in Him is living from this place of Holy Transplant and as we are living from that place, we discover our purpose. I dunno… just kind of thinking out loud here.

I’m not yet 100 percent sold on the fact that I am supposed to have a vision…

I mean, can’t I just help equip others to reach their dreams? That is a lot more fun for me anyway 🙂

I have a lot of questions too, considering I have had a vision statement I’ve carried around with me since 2001. The problem is, it just doesn’t seem to fit anymore because what I am doing is so opposite of the vision I penned in 2001, but I find myself happy as a pig-in-slop! I don’t get it? Am I lying to myself? Could I really be this happy where I am without an overarching vision pulling me forward?

I don’t have the answer to those questions.

But even though I’m not sold on this thing called vision, I have enough common sense to know that if God is bringing it up this often in one week (including one unmistakable heart-pull to listen to Pastor Mark this morning), I should probably start listening.

Maybe if I pay more attention I’ll crash into something that helps me find my way…


I’ll give you a new heart. I’ll put a new spirit in you. I’ll cut out your stone heart and replace it with a red-blooded, firm-muscled heart. Then you’ll obey my statutes and be careful to obey my commands. You’ll be my people! I’ll be your God…Ez 11:19-20

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