Begin with the End in Mind


Creating your BOLD vision

By Patrick G Howard

The February Focus of the Month is the second of the twelve-part series – Making 2019 Your Best Year Yet: Realizing God’s Plan for You. You can read the other parts of the series here:

• January: Do a New Thing! (Isaiah 43:19) -> LINK

If you are a fan of Stephen Covey, you will likely recognize that the title of our focus this month is the same as the title of Chapter 2 of his excellent book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. In this chapter, he posits that all things are created twice – first in the imagination, and then in the physical world; and that if you don’t actively visualize how you want your life to look, you will, by default, allow your environment and circumstances to shape it for you.

Think about it for a moment.

You wouldn’t build a building if you didn’t have a vision about what it should look like. You wouldn’t write a book if you didn’t have an idea about how it should end. You wouldn’t start baking a cake if you couldn’t imagine how it would taste when you eat it. So, why would you wander aimlessly through life with no real notion of where you wanted it to go?

When it comes to creating a vision, we should take a lesson from God. Therefore, our focus this month is the first verse of the bible.

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.

Genesis 1:1

We all know that God created the heavens and the earth, but did you ever stop to think that he must have had an incredibly marvelous vision for what His universe would look like?

I suppose this is when the heated discussion usually starts. You know what I’m talking about – the whole “Big Bang Theory vs Creation” argument. I honestly don’t see the two as being incongruous, and I’m not going to engage in that quarrel. To me, it’s a silly discussion.

To me, this discussion is a little like two people standing on a street corner. One says to the other, “Hey, did you see that wreck?” The other one replies, “There was no wreck. That dude ran a red light.” The discussion is pointless, because one is describing what happened, while the other is describing how it happened.

So, does the Big Bang Theory explain the creation of the universe? I don’t know. I’ll have to ask when I get to heaven. For the moment, though, let’s say it does.

That said, I like to imagine how God would have created our universe.

I can imagine that, one day, He was sipping on a glass of iced tea and pondering what His magnificent universe would be like. He considered what the brilliant stars in the sky should look like. He painstakingly calculated how all the celestial bodies would interact with each other – the galaxies, the stars and nebulae, the planets and moons, the meteors and comets. He imagined how matter and energy would relate to each other to provide order to the chaos. And then he contemplated how he could bring these things together into one singularity to create you. Then once God had this perfect vision of the perfect universe, He said, “Watch this!”

And, the universe was so.

Of course, we mortals can never come close to God’s marvelous vision for our universe; but that doesn’t mean we should not create a vision for our own lives. And while you’re at it, you might as well make your vision bold. I saw a quote the other day that emphasizes this point, and I think it is great advice. Hudson Taylor said, “Dream a dream so big, that unless God intervenes it will fail.”

“Dream a dream so big, that unless God intervenes it will fail.”

Hudson Taylor

And then, when your dream happens, be sure to give God the glory.

Will you accomplish your vision? Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, it doesn’t matter; because when your vision is bold, you will likely achieve something great along the way. So, when you create your personal vision, make it bold. As you are thinking about what your vision should be, remember our focus, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” And then dream about what you can create in His universe.