by Dexter Easley
I believe we can reach a place in life where we are convinced that we must ‘act’ as though we have arrived, as though we’ve ‘got it all together,’ or people will look at us strange. But I want to take a bold step forward to encourage those who have decided that they should not require much encouragement.
What is to be said for the many pastors who reach deep down and pull out their happy faces on Sunday morning when, for whatever reason, the night before was horrible? I’ll tell you what is to be said: “You are a man of vision and purpose and God has called you for such a time as this.”
Every pastor, male or female, will admit that sometimes it feels as though the weight of the world is on your shoulders. We carry more than we ought to carry. And what of your spouse who is in the thick of it all, serving with a smile, living through the pressure, doing all they can to hold the home together while ‘Pastor’ is preparing yet another sermon – the sermon that’s sure to change the lives of people who we pray will listen this time and forgo that second appointment?
Last year I wrote a book titled “The Real God Man.” It dealt with various male stereotypes, how they relate to their spouses, and most importantly, the need for every man to have a vision and know his purpose. By the completion of the book, I had uncovered some deep, hurtful truths that many men would rather hide. I’m not asking you to expose your faults or hidden fears; exposure can be a chilling experience. I only desire to share my hearts’ cry to God for men who hold the title of Pastor, and realize how crucial vision and purpose is to those we shepherd.
Remember the old sayings ‘If you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything,’ or, ‘if you don’t know where you’re going, people can lead you anywhere?’
Where there is no revelation, the people cast off restraint; but happy is he who keeps the law. Proverbs 29:18
Lack of vision will frustrate a person. Lack of vision causes lack of fulfillment. If you don’t have a vision, you can’t know where you’re going. You spend time trying to figure out why you are here. People who have no vision tend to flutter around and often become connected to a false vision. A false vision is not always from Satan. A false vision is plainly a vision that God has not ordained for you.
It started in the garden with Adam and Eve. These two perfect creations had everything they needed. The devil knew he could not attack them with lack or sickness so instead; he caused Adam to question his identity. If I can cause you to question who you are, I can turn you into whoever I want you to be.
Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the women, “Has God indeed said, you shall not eat of every tree of the garden?”…Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.” For God knows that in the day you eat of it, your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:1-5
The enemy implanted a false vision. He gave God’s perfect creation a picture of them that God had not authorized. Don’t allow your vision to become distorted and miss out on all God has for your life!
Make sure your vision is backed by the word of God. Write it down. Share it with others. Invest in it. Watch out for vision killers!
A young boy says, “I want to be the president.” Those who don’t understand the vision will say, “Hush, you can’t even spell.” They don’t realize how they are crushing the vision that is in him. Many of us can personally relate to this scenario. This happens in even the most functional of families. A child spends his entire life being told what he can’t do and very little time being built up in what he can do. The end result is a grown man who spends his life performing; trying to please the very people who limited him- trying to be something he is not. He no longer strives to fulfill the vision that God has placed in his heart because he’s too busy becoming what others said he should be.
Beware of those who will steal and kill your vision. These vision killers would like nothing more than to see the real vision God has for your life come to a screeching halt and never be fulfilled. Vision killers will sow seeds of doubt and discord into your life, your marriage, and because they know how dear they are to your heart some will even attack your children. And as pastors we know well of the attacks on our finances. A vision killer will do anything to get you off focus, out of tune and off track.
I encourage you today not to abandon the vision God has given you. God has called men and women to have dominion. We are to subdue the earth and function not in competition with each other, but compatibly.
On more than one occasion in the scriptures, God tells men to listen to their wives. Those who are sent to help the visionary have the supernatural ability to adapt. This person often comes in the form of your wife.
Visionaries know what they need, and those who are sent to help them have the supernatural ability to adapt themselves and become whatever that visionary needs to bring forth the vision God has planted in his heart. Yes, women you have a vision also, and you will see that your vision dovetails neatly into your husband’s vision.
“I will make him a helper comparable to him.” Genesis 2:15
Comparable means like him yet she is also compatible and suitable and adaptable. That means she was more than capable of becoming what he needed her to be. A wise woman is one who is willing to adapt to her visionary. A wise woman is one who will become what her visionary needs her to be so that she can help him fulfill his vision. Come into agreement with your visionary, become your husband’s greatest fan, and you know – fans intensify the fire.
THE PURPOSE OF THE VISIONARY
How many times have you used a shoe to hammer in a nail? Not very effective, is it? I always say that if you don’t know the purpose of a thing, you will abuse it.
True visionaries are submitted to God. They acknowledge Him in everything they do. They listen to His direction. To follow like that requires you to have a vibrant prayer life.
You are the visionary for your family and congregation. As the visionary, God may not give you the whole plan at once. Sometimes we don’t know our next step, but that’s ok because we know Who does. Your Heavenly Father may only show you the beginning and the potential of what it might become. Still, take comfort in hearing from the Manufacturer. Stay close and listen. Show Him you can be obedient to His first instructions.
I’m assured of what God has called me to do, yet it does not exempt me from continually seeking Him for direction and instruction for my family and my congregation. I think you can agree with me when I say, ‘Once a man understands what God has called him to do, it is much easier to relate properly to those around him.’
You have something in you that will set others free. God is not looking for those who will settle for just enough to get by. He’s looking for those who want to take His kingdom to the next level. It’s time The Real God Man and The Real God Woman reign together in unity as one in the earth.
Dr. Dexter Easley is the Founder and Senior Pastor of New Life Christian Fellowship Church, a thriving ministry in Goose Creek, SC, that is dedicated to preaching and teaching the Word of God in a practical and uncompromising manner. (www.newlifegcsc.net)
Dr. Easley is a man of solid integrity whose countless contributions to over 27 years of ministry has touched and impacted the lives of many. In addition, he is the celebrated author of “The Real God Man,” “Will You Pray,” God Didn’t Change His Mind,” “1000x Better Lifestyle,” “Increasing In Spite of the Storm” and “Prayer in the Midst of the Storm,” as well as a daily devotional titled “Wisdom Keys.”