Helping Someone See
In his book, Visioneering, Andy Stanley writes:
In many ways I feel that I am a product of a vision my father cast for me as a child. Early on he would say to me, "Andy, God has something very special for your life. He is going to use you in a great way." His words found their way into my heart.
During my junior high and high school days, those words would float through my mind at what I considered to be the most inappropriate times. "Andy, God has something very special for your life. He is going to use you in a great way." His vision for my life probably did as much as anything to move me safely through the minefield of adolescence.
The following is a journal entry I made during the fall of my senior year in high school. Keep in mind, I was in the twelfth grade when I wrote these words:
September 29, 1975
I need to tell my boy at a young age that God told me he was going to use my son in a great way. This greatly influenced my life. Lord, I pray it will his.
My father’s words served as guardrails at a vulnerable time in my development. Time after time they kept me from veering off into moral and relational ravines.
We are often most concerned about cultivating our own God-given vision, but just like Andy illustrates, how we treat those around us can be a powerful motivator to help them develop their own vision.
Here are three things to keep in mind as you help someone see all they can be for God:
1. Make a big deal out of their God-given talents and gifts. If you notice someone is great at singing, tell them. If they work well with youth, praise that talent. When someone notices our skills and talents, it can be a great road marker for us for the direction God wants us to take.
2. Just because you can’t, don’t assume they can’t either. God has made us all different. So if God is calling someone you know to do something that you haven’t been equipped to accomplish, don’t assume they won’t succeed. Never allow your personal feelings to interfere with the encouragement you could speak into someone’s life. Instead, help them to be all they can for God.
3. Remember that vision is powerful because it provides focus. Just as Andy mentioned, vision can keep the one you encourage out of bad situations and free from distractions and detours that don’t align with your life-giving affirmations.
Will you help someone see into their future today, and fuel the vision they need to do something great for God?
Questions for Reflection
Think about someone you respect, such as a former teacher, coach, pastor, or good friend who noticed some talent in you, and spoke life-giving words over you about who you could become. Were these words life-changing?
What does Ephesians 4:29 say about how we should speak to one another? What do you think this means?
Put It Into Action
Take time today to put Ephesians 4:29 into practice by affirming someone about the great ways you believe God can use them and why.
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