I have been busy working on a vision I conceived over six years ago. It is fascinating watching it slowly come together. There are few verses stuck up in our office that have been a source of encouragement to me over the years, when my vision seemed stuck dream mode, instead of evolving into reality. Two of the verses are:
Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: Philippians 1:6
Now therefore stand and see this great thing, which the Lord will do before your eyes. 1 Samuel 12:16
Under the verses I had typed, : ‘We must hold to the vision in spite of adversity’. I had originally stuck up the verses as a source of encouragement to my husband, when he was becoming very discouraged about a major project grinding to a halt. I truly believe that if God has allowed us to begin something, that His will for us, then come hell or high water, He will allow us to finish it in His strength.
The Bible reveals much about visions and dreams. They may come way before your circumstances give any hint of them ever coming through. As a matter of fact, you may experience even more trying circumstances after your grand dreams, that will tempt you to question if you were just having grand delusions. Joseph is a prime example. He had 2 dreams which seemed to indicate that one day he would be a leader and even his family members would bow down to him. Soon after he went through slavery and imprisonment, unjustly. It took many challenging years before his dreams manifested. It is too easy to jump from the beginning of the story to the end without considering that this great Bible icon was human just like the rest of us. Could you imagine yourself going through what he did, with the faith to believe that your dreams will come to pass?
As I write another verse has been knocking at my mind.
For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry. Habakkuk 2:3
If your vision seems slow in coming, hold tight, wait, it’s on its way. Truth be told, waiting is not always an easy thing to do. In this day and age where so many people are craving overnight success, it is good to remember that delayed triumph does not mean denial. It simply allows a period of time for your preparation or that of others around you. There are much benefits to be derived from our faith being tried, although it may not feel good during your time of waiting.
Here are some things that have helped me survive waiting periods.
- Pray about everything. Pray about your vision, pray about your frustration, pray about your preparation. Then keep listening for God’s direction.
- If there are resources you can start gathering, take the time to do so. It may be purchasing one piece of equipment at a time. It may be finding out more about what you are interested in achieving, but do what you can.
- Check your attitude. Proverbs 13:12 rightly tells us that “Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life.” It can be frustrating when you are hoping to achieve something and keep missing it. Grumbling and complaining will be your greatest enemies. They certainly won’t make God move any faster and as a matter of fact, the ‘Wilderness to Promise land’ story of the Israelites is a fair warning of the ability of such vices to keep you going around and around in circles. When you feel frustrated, talk directly to God about it. If you are going to seek encouragement from someone else, make sure that person wouldn’t encourage you to sit around having a griping and groaning pity party.
- Count the cost. “Is there anyone here who, planning to build a new house, doesn’t first sit down and figure the cost so you’ll know if you can complete it? If you only get the foundation laid and then run out of money, you’re going to look pretty foolish. Everyone passing by will poke fun at you: ‘He started something he couldn’t finish.’ Luke 14:28-30 (MSG). Time and money are not the only things needed to accomplish certain dreams. If you are aspiring to be a leader are you willing to accept the people clamouring for your attention, invading your privacy or not being able to attend certain functions? What if God ask you to leave your comfort zone, give up something you cherish, even risking having the people you care about misunderstand you, rejecting you or slandering you? Think about how much and what you are willing to give up to fulfil your vision. Don’t be caught off guard when your vision starts being fulfilled.
If you have a vision, hold on to it. Do not let the enemy steal it from you. Do not allow yourself to give up before it is fulfilled. Remember God loves you and takes pleasure in helping you succeed.
Heavenly Father, I love you. Thank you that we can rely on you to bring our dreams and visions to pass. Lord help those who are even now going through a time of difficulty and are wondering if they would ever see their dreams manifest. Strengthen them by the power of your Holy Spirit and complete the good work that you have begun in them. I also pray for those who have gone through the storm Sandy and have lost many things they worked hard to achieve, in your mercy encourage and strengthen them and bring them out better than before. In Jesus name. Amen