I recently talked to a woman who learned that she had cancer, with only six months to live. Within a few days she had quit her job and started living her passion: painting. Her friends thought she has lost her mind, but she was happier than ever before in her life. There’s a postscript. Her cancer went into remission.
Is that what it takes? Do we have to look into the very eyes of death in order for us to face up to internal and external blockades and friction? Do they have to cripple our lives before we wake up? How many people have become drunks and drug addicts, developed tumors, succumbed to painkillers, gossip, divorce, compulsive cell-phone and social media use, only because we don’t do the thing that was planted in our hearts since before the foundations of this world were laid? Helen Keller once said “It is a terrible thing to see and have no vision.” Where vision is absent, people will die. The person with no vision will perish, but so will the world around them. When the eyes of your heart are dim, then the story that you were meant to live becomes dull and…normal.
You are not meant to live…normal.
What would happen if tomorrow morning every soul woke up to the power of his or her dreams, every shrink in the directory would be out of business. Maybe prisons would stand empty. Maybe all forms of the drug industry would collapse, along with the junk food industry, cosmetic surgery, many forms of poverty, and road rage (maybe). If every human would take time to listen to where God is pointing your own destiny, and continually crucify each resistance day by day.
In his book Let Your Life Speak, Parker Palmer says “Before you tell your life what you intend to do with it, listen for what it intends to do with you. Before you tell your life what truths and values you have decided to live up to, let your life tell you truths you embody, what values you represent.”
There are people who are in the hospital who would love to do the very things that you took for granted today. The Apostle Paul speaks of heart-vision in Ephesians 1:18, “the eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that you may know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints.” In order to see what others can’t see, you have to look with eyes that you have never used before. When the eyes of your heart are illumined, you will see that YOU are God’s inheritance. A joint-heir with an inheritance that is secure. Only in that confidence can you begin to see beyond what is blocking your destiny.
Most of these obstacles to birthing fresh vision, whether they are external or internal, are mostly invisible. Some of these contentious walls seem to come from outside of ourselves. We locate it and blame it2 in spouses, jobs, kids, bosses. However most of the time, we are not dealing with an outside opponent. These walls usually arise from within. It is self-generated and self-perpetuated. It is a colossal loss of peace. It is a spirit of fear. It paralyzes the future by making still the present.
Right before the Lord called Gideon, a prophet was sent to Israel. Part of the Lord’s word through him was “I delivered you…from the hands of all your oppressors…and I said to you, ‘I am the Lord your God; do not fear the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell.” But you have not obeyed my voice’” (Judges 6:9-10). When you fail to listen and obey the instructions of God, you will immediately begin to fear the gods of this world system, by becoming oppressed and enslaved by your enemies (walls and barriers to destiny). Oppression plagues so many people today.
Oppression enters when we are afraid to confront our enemies and deal objectively with issues of personal destiny. Therefore, we have become a generation that carries oppression in our souls. We have learned to accept the dominance of our spiritual enemy and the constriction that comes when we feel less than positive about our destiny.
In short, there is only vital ingredient to abolishing external and internal barriers to great vision:
God can see further than you can.:)