conjuring up a vision

Of all my favorite topics to write about, visionary thinking is one of my favorites. Others topics such as LGBTQ and questions and leadership are engaging. But of all my posts, the ones that receive the strongest responses and reactions are my posts about vision in the church.

That means that I am either dangerously wrong or dangerously right. I humbly submit it’s the later.

Why don’t you try it, church? Just for a season! See how liberating and fruitful it is. Oh yes, chaotic and confusing as well. But the room for love and joy in genuine community is infinite.

My latest book about visionary thinking in the church, soon to be launched, is already available on Amazon. CLICK HERE!

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12 Replies to “conjuring up a vision”

  1. Neither right nor wrong nor dangerous. Your comments and agenda re “VISION” get active response because we all know that “vision” like “ego” is a kind of “poor we have with us always.” Your vision is for a church to have no vision. (Like John Cage and his artistic performances) Vision (like “sin” – “essence,” “being”) is existential and intrinsic. Aspects of vision (the self-seeking manipulation we would eschew) are deniable and cover-up-able–and that may be where the problem is. Denying our vision. As if we were visionless, motive-less. As if we we ego-less. Is this just a play-with-words? I believe “I get” your concern: that a church-vision-of enhancement and growth and even mission can eclipse the other agenda which is the personal soul-growth of its members. Good point and true. But the crystal-ball voodoo you project on “church” may be unfair and (may I say descriptively) half-assed. Not so much dangerous.

  2. O.k., I see what you’re saying Sam, about not having a vision being a vision, but I think it’s a different category than the type of vision where you set goals and assign tasks and ‘ministries’ to meet those goals etc.

    Anyway, David, I’m not even sure your visionless vision would be that chaotic or confusing except to to those who’d like to control it.

    Keep up the good visionless vision casting.

  3. So often are visions revolve around the self…and what ‘we want’.

    The true vision is Christ and the forgiveness of sins that He offers to real sinners…the kind we know we are.

  4. When my last church came up with the statement, “Love God and love people unconditionally”, people in the congregation found THAT “chaotic and confusing”. That was very disturbing to me.

  5. Not to long ago I did a “Vision and Future” presentation at the church I was attending. I was presenting ideas because of the very real possibility that the church was going to close. The parish priest was being forced to retire for age and there would be no replacement.

    After I spoke about the church’s mission/vision statement (which was very good and still viable), and how the individuals in the church were already empowered to do almost everything in the church, I was rather impolitely told that they would defer everything to the bishop and basically do nothing.

    Now THAT was a vision to have not vision!

  6. This is a particularly stirring one for me. It’s so true to my experiences. And the funny thing, looking back, is that while “having visions” they were also saying, “Don’t pay attention to those evil ones who have visions and talk to the dead!”

    The irony. It burns.

  7. Sam, this comment of yours only proves that you like to be contradictory and a pot stirrer, which is ironic given your knowledge about ego.

  8. Wonder how Martin Luther King Jr. would respond to this post? Wonder where we would all be if he didn’t have the ‘vision’ he had? What about visionary’s who have vision based on human need and then respond?

  9. Tana: I agree with you. Contradictory, contro-version: on the one hand BUT also on the other hand. Otherwise IT’s always the “sound of one hand clapping,” know what I mean? Pot stirrer: yes, I hope, and always yearning for an environment that embraces both–contradiction and pot-stirring. As well as paradox and mystery.

    “In life we make progress by
    conflict and in mental life
    by argument and disputation….
    There must be confrontation C
    and opposition, in order that
    sparks must be kindled.

    Only an open conflict of ideas
    and principles can produce
    any clarity….

    Argument is essential for
    its own sake.” (Karl Popper)

    Even if all were agreed on
    an essential proposition, it
    would be essential to give
    an ear to the one person who
    does not. J.S.Mill

  10. Many churches don’t want to have love as a vision or theme of their year due to their fear of sin. This goes to show you that they don’t REALLY believe that Jesus is the Victor and that his work really was finished on the cross.

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