Monday, February 06, 2017

The Resolve of Vision

"God, I want to give You every minute of this year. I shall try to keep You in mind every moment of my waking hours. I shall try to let my hand write what You direct. I shall try to let You be the speaker and direct every word. I shall try to let You direct my acts. I shall try to learn Your language as it was taught by Jesus and all others through whom You speak - in beauty and singing birds and cool breezes, in radiant Christlike faces, in sacrifices and in tears. It will cost not only much, but everything that conflicts with this resolve." (Frank Laubach, Frank Laubach's Prayer Diary, 5.)
Two phrases from this luminous quote strike me:

"I want" (1x)
"I shall try" (5x)

Desire, born out of enticing vision, gives birth to intention and means. Commenting on the parables of Jesus, John Ortberg has said that "the mark of a transforming vision is its ability to elicit unforced desire." (See here for one version of this statement) We cannot just read a quote like the one above and "try" like Laubach did. We need to get behind the "try" and seek a vision that would naturally lead to such efforts.

From this statement, what would you say was Laubach's view of God? of himself? of the world?

How does this compare with your view(s)?

Spend some time in silence and solitude this week and allow your heart to mull over these things.

Lord Jesus, heal our vision. We are so narrow and shallow with our eyes. We only see what we want to see; we only see what will help us regain certainty, exert control and indulge comfort. Disrupt our lives so that we might entertain new thoughts, emotions, ideas and images. Let us linger over disappointment, suffering, mystery and beauty to see what they can teach us. Set us on fire with a vision of the nearness and goodness of your Kingdom such that we might live lives pleasing to you, lives that take on the epic qualities of your mind and heart.

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