Have you ever shared vision with a member of your church or group only to be met by a blank face, or a confused or disapproving look?
When we step out and pioneer something new in our local church or community we need to cast vision to those around us. But many leaders in this situation hope to achieve unanimous acceptance and excitement around their new vision.
But : does everyone need to be excited about the new vision?
Maybe you’re casting vision for missional communities, and trying to explain the vision behind why you are doing this new “missional thing”. Or maybe your casting the vision for joining a huddle and doing this new “discipleship thing”. Some will respond with interest and excitement, but others may dislike or disagree with what you’re saying.
Sharing vision is vulnerable. It involves communicating something that is personal to us. It involves a future picture that others may not yet see. It involves inviting people into our heart and life and into a closer walk with us. When someone dismisses what we share we can feel discouraged or frustrated. We can start to question whether we have got it right or heard the Lord correctly.
At this point it’s important to remember two things
1) to be confident of God’s word to you that you are sharing with others
2) that not everyone will respond to your vision and want to sign up straight away
This is very similar to the People of Peace principle (click here to visit the 3dm US blog and listen to Jo Saxton give an excellent short overview of People of Peace). We see in Luke 10 that Jesus tells his disciples to stay with those who welcome them, serve them and listen to what they have to say. Through his instructions he indicates that not everyone will welcome them and listen to them. Clearly, there were those who would not be open to the message at that time.
Sharing vision works in much the same way: we are to look for those who are open and stay with them. Not because they are now our best friends, or we like them the most, but because they responded to vision.
Those who respond might be those we least expect which is why sharing vision widely is important.
Jesus shows us in the parable of the sower (Matthew 13) that we are to scatter seed and look for the “good” soil that will yield a harvest. There was clearly plenty of seed that landed on other soil, but did not produce fruit. It’s a similar process with speaking out vision and observing the response.
So, to answer our original question, “Does everyone need to be excited about my vision?”
The simple answer is no!
God will give you the people and resources you need to accomplish what He has called you to – you just need to keep searching for them.
From our experience here are a few practical pointers:
- Share vision widely, often, and with many different people. Don’t stick just to those you would hope to respond and therefore set yourself up to be disappointed.
- Share testimony of what God has done already. Take opportunities to share “from the front” and in conversation. As your vision becomes part of your life, so it naturally flows out in all that you do.
- All the time be watching and waiting for where the seed of vision looks to have fallen on good soil.
- Work with the group who respond first – slowly and surely the rest will follow.
Next week, we will open this up a bit more and look at the type of people that are in fact more likely to respond to vision first and what to do with them!