Detrich Bonhoeffer is one of my favorite authors. He was a true prophetic voice during the first part of this century. He stood against the greatest darkness of his time without compromise, and died because of it in a Nazi concentration camp. In one of his books, Life Together, he made a bold and shocking remark, stating simply: “God hates the visionary.” The translation of this from the German language that he wrote in, may be a little stronger than he intended, but there is some truth to this that we should understand.
Vision is a powerful force. Almost all human advancement is the result of someone having a vision. It has been a great encouragement for me to see so many with a vision gather in our local congregations. I have listened to many visions, and I feel that most of them really are from the Lord. It has stirred me with the knowledge that there is a potential for something more extraordinary than I could have even hoped for just a couple of years ago. However, if we are going to fulfill our calling, as individuals and as a church, we must now go beyond just having a vision.
Almost everyone, Christians and non-Christians, has a vision of what they want to do or be, and yet very few fulfill it. Vision alone has never accomplished anything. Between the place of having a vision and seeing it fulfilled, there is always a lot of hard, tedious work that few visionaries have been willing to do. I think that was the source of Bonhoeffer’s frustration with visionaries.
That is why, regardless of how good a person’s vision sounds, I cannot get too encouraged about it until I see them also having a heart to work. Having the vision is the fun part. Walking it out will usually be much more difficult. Between the place where we receive the promise and the Promised Land, there will be a wilderness that is the opposite of what we have been promised. That wilderness is where our faith in God is purified, and our knowledge of ourselves becomes much more realistic. The wilderness is the place where the mere visionaries are separated from those who have true faith, who love the purposes of God enough to pay the price to see the visions fulfilled. That is why James wrote: “For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead,” James 2:26.
God did not call us out of bondage just to wander aimlessly in the wilderness. He called us to walk in the full inheritance that He gained for us on the cross. We cannot settle for anything less. It is time to get through the wilderness and start possessing the promises that we have been called to inherit. I am even more convinced that this is the time to cross over when I see so many with great visions who also have great hearts and are ready to work. However, let us not forget that even after we have crossed our Jordan River and have begun to eat the fruit of the land, the battles will have just begun. Possessing our promises will be hard, but it will be worth it.
We must combine vision with the wisdom to know how to do the work, the faith to know that it can be done, and the resolve to actually do it. As we studied yesterday, those who have a vision to see the house of the Lord restored, and the walls of His great city rebuilt, will suffer attacks from within and without. However, those with true faith will not be deterred. Our goal is to hear on that most glorious judgment day, “Well done good and faithful servant. You finished the job I gave you to do.”
~ Pastor Rick Joyner
|Pastor Rick Joyner is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the Senior Pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church.|