How to Shape Your Life Through Vision

By Alan Wright — April 04, 2019

God wants to shape your life through vision, not law.

Today’s Text: “Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast off restraint, but blessed is he who keeps the law.” (Proverbs 29:18, ESV)

When our daughter Abigail was born in 1998, I preached a sermon two weeks later that began with some silliness:

“I have a vision for my daughter’s life and it doesn’t include certain types of men. So I have acquired an application for permission to date my daughter. The applicant must fill out the form before taking Abigail on a date. Of course, she will be 21 years of age before any one can apply.”

The comical “date my daughter application form” included questions like:

“In 50 words or less, what does the phrase: “Do not touch my daughter?” mean to you?”

And …

            “When would be the best time to interview your father, mother and pastor?”

The form concluded:

            “Thank you for your interest. Please allow 4-6 years for processing.”

Abby was only two weeks old, but I already had a fatherly vision for her life. My vision for her life didn’t include her dating the wrong kind of men. Before she was born, I had already envisioned her as the Bible describes her namesake – a beautiful and wise woman. I envisioned her loving God and loving life. I envisioned her growing in wisdom, stature and favor. There were, of course, so many things I could have never known. I couldn’t have known that she would love to ride horses and dance classical ballet or that she would win national speech contests. But I had a deep, joyous, godly vision for her life and I let her know about it everyday.

So Abby caught much of that vision. Knowing herself treasured and gifted, she aligned her life in accord with that vision. We spent very few hours disciplining her because her inward vision was her discipline. We didn’t lay down the law for our daughter; we cast a vision for her. Such is the way of God. He doesn’t want to direct your life by putting you under law. He’s wants to guide you daily through His gracious vision. Law wears us out, but vision energizes us. Embrace God’s vision for your life and your behaviors will automatically align to it. And that’s the Gospel!

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