Visions without Fearing God - Scary!

Today, "At the Well", we're discussing Having a Family Vision.

Do you have a vision for your family? If so, share it with us. If not, what do you think it would be?

Our family shares the same belief in the Scripture Natalie used on her blog:

"Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint [or the people are discouraged],"
~ Proverbs 29:18 (ESV)

It is true, without a specific goal, a specific plan, a specific vision, we all tend to "cast off restraint" and give into our sin natures or old sin patterns. And the natural affect of that is discouragement, as we find that we are so disappointed with ourselves for allowing this to happen one more time.

It's the same old story. We begin with the best intentions, with a God-honoring goal in mind, but because we're not careful to put our attentions to how we reach our goal, and not just that we reach our goal, we find that disaster and sometimes pain come from our lack of strategic planning.

An example from Scripture we often use in our household is that of King David when he had a vision (a wonderful, God-honoring vision) to bring the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem from the land of the Philistines:

"David consulted with the commanders of thousands and of hundreds, with every leader. And David said to all the assembly of Israel, 'If it seems good to you and from the LORD our God, let us send abroad to our brothers who remain in all the lands of Israel, as well as to the priests and Levites in the cities that have pasturelands, that they may be gathered to us. Then let us bring again the ark of our God to us, for we did not seek it in the days of Saul.' All the assembly agreed to do so, for the thing was right in the eyes of all the people...And when they came to the threshing floor of Chidon, Uzzah put out his hand to take hold of the ark, for the oxen stumbled. And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah, and he struck him down because he put out his hand to the ark, and he died there before God....Then David said that no one but the Levites may carry the ark of God, for the LORD had chosen them to carry the ark of the LORD and to minister to him forever....Because you did not carry it the first time, the LORD our God broke out against us, because we did not seek him according to the rule."
~ 1 Chronicles 13:1-4, 9-10, 15:2 & 13 (ESV, emphasis added)

We see here that David's vision to bring the Ark of God back to Jerusalem was not a selfish or ungodly vision. No, as as matter of fact, David's vision was righteous and very honoring to God. Unfortunately, in David's haste, he only consulted those around him and acted on their approval of his vision, rather than consult with God before he continued with his plan.

Have you ever done that? I have! I've called the wisest and most godly women around me to pray with me regarding certain matters and after I receive their response, without even consulting our Heavenly Father, I move ahead with the plan. And like David, I find myself discouraged and my plans foiled. And sometimes, also like David, I've even hurt others in the process, which I've desperately regretted.

Sometimes our visions, or goals we set for ourselves: personally, for our family, ministry or for business, are selfish and not of God. But as we begin to mature in our faith and our love for God grows, we begin to have visions and goals that are established on bringing our awesome God the greatest honor and glory. And like David, although our vision may be one that is God-honoring, it may not be God-fearing.

I don't know about you, but it seems that the more I mature in my faith, the more I grow in the knowledge of the Lord, the more I'm tempted to become arrogant and think that it's because of any good thing I've done that God has blessed me with such intimacy with Him. It is during those times that I find that I behave a bit more casually with my sovereign and great Father God and tend to birth visions that are God-honoring, but not God-fearing. When this happens, I'm often discouraged because I know my goal was to honor Him, but in my haste and arrogance, I forgot to consult Him about how He wanted it done. And just like David, that's when I remember to fear my God as well as love Him.

Our entire family has learned so much from this account of King David's life, and we're so grateful to God for teaching us through him. One thing we love about King David is that although he was a sinner just like us, he sure knew how to repent without making excuses! We want to be like that!

Based on this lesson from King David, our family's vision is founded on Micah 6:8:

"He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"

In everything we do, whether personally or corporately, all four of us desire to fulfill this Scripture so that we may, in all things, bring God glory, honor and praise, with great fear and awe of who He is.

What about you? Do you suffer from poor planning, no planning? Do you have visions, but hastily see them through? And what has God taught you through all this that you would like to share with others so that we may all be edified by your experience?

May the God of all glory build you up today as you seek to do justice, love kindness and walk humbly before Him in everything.