November 24, 2008
Developing a Vision When You're Not a Visionary
Solve some problem right in front of you. Often vision is born by passing through the narrow and dark birth canal of problems. You see the problem, and you start to work on it. You don't necessarily feel inspired or see lights. All you are doing is trying to solve some problem right in front of you. But later, everyone else says, "What a great vision!"
The Bible's classic example is Nehemiah. He hears a terrible report about the few remaining Jews living in Jerusalem: "Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire." The news makes him cry. Nehemiah fasts, prays, and begins to ask for help and to assemble the people and materials. Today we hold up Nehemiah as an example of a visionary leader: he conceived and launched a staggering city-rebuilding project. Nehemiah was simply trying to solve one problem right in front of him.
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