In God’s School
From: YouVersion Reading Plan Visioneering by Andy Stanley
Philippians 2:13 (NLT2) For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.
If you saw The Empire Strikes Back, you may remember the scene in which Luke wants to go and rescue his friends before he has finished his Jedi Knight training. Yoda begs him to wait. “Luke, you must complete the training.”
But Luke has seen the future, and he knows his friends’ lives are in danger. He says, “I can’t keep the vision out of my head. They are my friends; I must help them.”
Yoda finally issues a dire warning. “If you leave now, help them you could, but you will destroy all for which they have fought and suffered.”
Still, Luke is determined to go. He is so locked in on what could and should be that he feels compelled to leave immediately. So he does. And do you remember what happens? Everything works out great!
But that’s in a galaxy far, far away. Back here where we live, action before preparation usually spells disaster.
In the case of your divinely ordered vision, God goes to work in you to prepare you for what he knows lies ahead. Like Luke Skywalker, you may so urgently feel the need to act that it seems foolish to wait. But God is sovereign. Keep that in mind. Your vision is simply an extension of his vision. And his timing is perfect.
For a while, God will be working in you to prepare you to act on his purposes. And I think we can assume his purposes are in accordance with his timetable.
All this can be hard to hear, can’t it? I know. I have found that the complaint most associated with the process of visioneering is about God’s timing. Once the vision is clear, we assume we are ready. Otherwise, why would he have given us the vision in the first place?
Don’t be impatient. Don’t move before God leads. Accept his training and his timing. Meanwhile, your vision, though it may burn inside you, will enable you to endure the wait, because you know it’s worth it to get it right.
Vision always precedes preparation. Initially, your vision will exceed your competency. Within the context of that tension, God will go to work on you.
To the extent that you can, identify how God is preparing you now to fulfill your vision effectively later on.
Ask the Holy Spirit for Help
From YouVersion Reading Plan Seven Keys To Emotional Wellness Reading Plan by Dr. Charles Stanley
John 16:13 (NLT2)13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future.
Scripture tells us the only Guide worth trusting is the Holy Spirit. He’s the One who knows our past completely, from the moment we were conceived to the present, and who also knows our futures, from this day to eternity. He knows God’s plan and purpose for us today and each day of our lives. He also knows what’s good and right for us.
Jesus repeatedly referred to the Spirit as the “Spirit of truth.” Note what He said about the Holy Spirit’s activity in your life: “He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come” (John 16:13). The Spirit of truth is like an inner compass in our lives, always pointing us toward what Jesus would be, say, or do in any given moment.
Everything that Jesus did was revealed to Him by the Father. We, too, must ask the Holy Spirit to reveal the Father’s will to us. The emotionally healthy person may feel anger, for example, but by asking the Holy Spirit for guidance on how to channel that anger into positive behavior, the person is going to find an outlet for anger that results in blessing, not harm. The emotionally healthy person may feel disappointment or discouragement, but by asking the Holy Spirit for guidance, he or she will be led to new opportunities that result in hope.
Remember, the Holy Spirit is imparted to you when you place your trust in Christ. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is to give you daily guidance and counsel, to help you walk in the ways of the Lord, and to make wise choices. Ask for the help of the Holy Spirit on a daily basis. Ask Him to guard you from evil and to guide you into righteousness. Give him charge over your schedule, your daily appointments, and the emotions that you feel. Trust Him to help you pursue emotional health and strength, bringing your emotional life into harmony with your spiritual life—a whole-life founded on Jesus Christ.