If you’ve got a big dream to pursue, Visioneering by Andy Stanley could be a big help. You can read my full book review by clicking here. Below are 11 quotes from this book which especially caught my eye.
“As Christians, we do not have a right to take our talents, abilities, experiences, opportunities, and education and run off in any direction we please. We lost that right at Calvary. …At the same time, we have no right to live visionless lives either. If God—think about it—if God has a vision for what you are to do with your allotment of years, you had better get in on it. What a tragedy to miss it. Missing out on God’s plan for our lives must be the greatest tragedy this side of eternity.”
“What could be and should be can’t be until God is ready for it to be.”
“Three important things are taking place while we wait:
- The vision matures in us.
- We mature in preparation for the vision.
- God is at work behind the scenes preparing the way.”
“Prayer is critical to vision development. Here’s why: We see what we are looking for; we often miss what we don’t expect to see. …Prayer keeps us looking. Prayer keeps the burden fresh. It keeps our eyes and hearts in an expectant mode. Prayer doesn’t force God’s hand. But it keeps us on the lookout for His intervention. Prayer sensitizes us to subtle changes in the landscape of our circumstances.”
“God is using your circumstances to prepare you to accomplish His vision for your life. Your present circumstances are part of the vision. You are not wasting your time. You are not spinning your wheels. You are not wandering in the wilderness. If you are ‘seeking first’ His kingdom where you are, then where you are is where He has positioned you. And He has positioned you there with a purpose in mind.”
“An agonizingly important principle: what always precedes how. You will know what God has put in your heart to do before you know how He intends to bring it about. …How is never a problem for God. It is usually a big problem for us. But how is God’s specialty.”
“I think it is safe to assume that most Christians are not attempting anything that requires God’s intervention. They are not looking for God to do anything special. They are not aware that they need Him to do anything special. They are trusting that He will step in once they breathe their last breath. But other than that, they live as if they have everything under control. If you want to know how you score on this issue, listen to your prayers and prayer requests. What do you pray for? What are the things you find yourself praying for night after night? Those are your passions. Those are the things that matter most to you. Pretty scary, huh? A little embarrassing? Somewhat self-centered? What was your response the last time someone asked you for a prayer request? Did you have to think for a moment? Was your response kind of … well … less than inspiring? Or did your eyes light up as you thought about that thing, that person, that ministry you were trusting God for? Other than Heaven, and possibly your health, what are you consciously depending on God to do?”
“This world is filled with people who stopped one question short of finding an avenue that would allow them to pursue their vision. Don’t let the discouragement of a few slammed doors cause you to walk away from the vision God has birthed in your heart. Investigate. Look around. Think outside the lines. Few destinations have only one point of access. The same is true of your vision. If your initial approach is blocked, look for alternatives. Don’t give up too quickly. You may be one question away from discovering the key that will unlock the door that stands between you and God’s vision for your life. God will use this period of investigation to confirm, sharpen, and, sometimes, redirect your vision.”
“When a man or woman is willing to give up something valuable for a God-ordained vision, God looks upon it as worship.”
“Our natural response to criticism is to defend ourselves. This is especially true when our vision is under attack. We are tempted to begin a dialogue with our critics or with those who are parroting their criticism. Consequently, we waste energy and thought trying to answer questions for people who are often not really interested in answers. Without realizing it, our focus begins to shift. Instead of being vision centered, we slowly become critic centered.”
“You have a destiny to fulfill. God has placed before you opportunities and responsibilities that are brimming with divine significance. He has given you gifts, talents, and relationships that are waiting to be exploited on behalf of His kingdom.”