Thursday, February 18, 2010

The Kingdom Vision Taste Test

Ps 34:8 taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good! Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who trusts and takes refuge in Him. AMP

We talk a lot about Vision in the Church, in business and in politics today. When you are around people with a Kingdom vision they have the qualities of the King and that is why they are appealing to people.

People with a Kingdom Vision are focused on the giver of the Vision, they are full of faith that the Vision given by Him will come to pass, they have hope even when things do not look the way they had thought they would be, they have a positive influence on those around them that the King's Vision is within reach and as a result others believe in, and become a part of making the vision reality.

This comes not just from vision casting or sharing the King's vision but from the fruit or impact the Vision has on the vision bearer. When the Vision is fresh and alive it brings freshness and life. When the Vision is dim, contrived or is lacking in the vitality of the King it is hard for someone to follow it or the person bearing it. I have noticed that hope springs from vision and vision from faith or belief that what is not yet is what can be Hebrews 11:6.

Faith in the king and His Kingdom are the key to vision. There are a lot of people who live in fear and doubt and who are always looking for or are wandering around seeking someone or something to give them hope. They are in need of a healthy relationship with God. He is the giver of life, a life that flows continually to those who are in an ongoing relationship with Him.

Today, we are tempted to have a fast food version of our relationship with God, when what we really need is a time of restful feeding on the green grass of His Word and of drinking from the still water of His Spirit, of letting Him minister to us by talking with us and calling us by name, and of letting him rub His healing ointment into the hurts and bruises we receive from everyday life. When we do this and do it again and again we find the life, hope and vision that inspire others to see in us a glimpse of Him.

This glimpse of Him, what He is and wants to do, generates loyalty and passion for the Vision He has given us. People follow a vision when they can see hope and faith of the Kingdom alive in it, not when it is a part of the latest promotion or fashionable idea, which gets pounded endlessly into their information pathways.

Proverbs 29:18 Where there is no prophetic vision the people cast of restraint, are discouraged or wander without hope. But blessed is he who keeps God’s Word.

When they see Kingdom vision which has come from faith and hope alive in someone it gives them a reason to seek God for themselves and in the building of their relationship with God they gain faith, hope and His vision for them.

The Bible uses the imagery of trees bearing fruit as an outward demonstration of His life flowing through us to produce the fruit of the Spirit, which is the true mark of His life within. Jesus in John 15 speaks about the need for the branches to stay connected to the vine if they are to have His life which produces vision. When we have a healthy ongoing relationship with Him we make it possible for people to get a glimpse of Him. We have a choice; we can allow others to get a glimpse of the King which brings faith and leads to Kingdom vision or a glimpse of us without Him, which will lead the people to not have hope or a purpose and wander aimlessly.

Faith in the King is the key to vision. Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the assurance of the things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen,” NASB revised version.

Kingdom Vision does not cause us to be DRIVEN; instead it leads and inspires us. True Kingdom vision makes room for all who would agree with it. It does not need someone to constantly pound it into our heads and manipulate us into sacrifice so that some one else's vision of their kingdom can be realized. People will become a part of the Kings vision and freely participate in the cost of seeing God accomplish it when it carries the sweet aroma of a living sacrifice and not the stench of self and pride.

Kingdom Visions spring forth as children of the calling of the King in our lives. The more mature and healthy in Christ we are the more the birthed vision will demonstrate the Fathers heart and not our own!

Kingdom Taste Test
When someone taste of the vision you proclaim will they taste and see that the Lord is Good, or will they taste and see that bitter and impure water has been mixed with the river of life? Or will they see that Jesus has save the best for release in His season?

John 2:9-11 9 When the headwaiter tasted the water which had become wine, and did not know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom, 10 and said to him, "Every man serves the good wine first, and when the people have drunk freely, then he serves the poorer wine; but you have kept the good wine until now."

In the midst of these troubling times we need to know the King and the precepts of His Kingdom. We learn these from His Word and our walk with Him. Therefore it is important that we walk by the Spirit of God.

Gal 5:16-26
16 But I say, walk and live [habitually] in the [Holy] Spirit [responsive to and controlled and guided by the Spirit]; then you will certainly not gratify the cravings and desires of the flesh (of human nature without God).
17 For the desires of the flesh are opposed to the [Holy] Spirit, and the [desires of the] Spirit are opposed to the flesh (godless human nature); for these are antagonistic to each other [continually withstanding and in conflict with each other], so that you are not free but are prevented from doing what you desire to do.
18 But if you are guided (led) by the [Holy] Spirit, you are not subject to the Law.
19 Now the doings (practices) of the flesh are clear (obvious): they are immorality, impurity, indecency,
20 Idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger (ill temper), selfishness, divisions (dissensions), party spirit (factions, sects with peculiar opinions, heresies),
21 Envy, drunkenness, carousing, and the like. I warn you beforehand, just as I did previously, that those who do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness,
23 Gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [that can bring a charge].
24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus (the Messiah) have crucified the flesh (the godless human nature) with its passions and appetites and desires.
25 If we live by the [Holy] Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. [If by the Holy Spirit we have our life in God, let us go forward walking in line, our conduct controlled by the Spirit.]
26 Let us not become vainglorious and self-conceited, competitive and challenging and provoking and irritating to one another, envying and being jealous of one another. AMP

Artwork by Graham Braddoct's Road to the Cross

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