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Friday, February 25, 2011

Personal Vision

The same week I began a Bible study called Backpacking Through Joshua, I started reading Steven Furtick’s book Sun Stand Still. I wanted to read the book when it was released months ago but God wanted me to pay attention to His message in Joshua so He preached it to me twice, once through Amber and once through Steven.

Furtick makes ‘audacious faith’, the ability to believe God for the impossible, totally contagious. He not only strives to make believers take hold of their faith, hold it up to the Light and inspect it, he propels his readers to activate it.

He spends a great deal of time in the book talking about a ‘Page 23’ vision or personal vision. I have a personal vision. I’ve been struggling with my personal vision for years. It seems so big; I have no idea where to start or what to do. For many years I wondered if it was really God’s idea at all or just my own imagination. So for a long time I did nothing. I even quit dreaming.

Furtick addresses this very thing in the book saying, “If the size of the vision for your life isn’t intimidating to you, chances are it’s insulting to God.”

Furtick goes on to say we need God to make our visions a reality and there is an end to our faith—but not to God’s faithfulness. We can count on that. “God didn’t encourage Joshua according to Joshua’s faith. He encouraged Joshua according to his own faithfulness.” In other words, God gave you the vision and He will give you what you need to see it through in such a way that it will be all about Him.

I am also encouraged to jump into my personal vision with both feet because Furtick says, “The opposite of Page 23 vision is survival mode.” The frustration and depression that settle over me when life gets so hard and frenzied that I am barely surviving is a state I loathe. I have been timid to jump into my personal vision for fear of living an unbalanced life. In essence I have been causing what I have been trying to avoid. All because I’ve been fearful that adding the responsibilities that come with pursuing my own vision will be too much added to my already hectic lifestyle. 

With colorful language, Furtick makes the reader really dig deep to find his own unique calling and uncover the ways God created him to specifically bring God fame. Furtick says this on how your own personal vision will come to life, “It will start with a seed of inspiration that takes root in your imagination. Over time, it will produce a harvest of obedience for the glory of God. And the whole process will take place deep in the soil of your faith. … Seizing his big purpose for your life … is about mining the depths of who you are in him. And out of that revelation, you will fulfill the purpose that he put you on the earth to fulfill.”

He inspires the reader to get to work cultivating the tiny seeds and glimmers of hope that God has buried deep within. He goes on to talk about praying ‘Sun Stand Still’ prayers—the prayers that supernaturally fuel our desires with the faith the march forward.

Experiencing miracles like the one Joshua experienced when the sun stood still, requires not only praying with what Furtick calls audacious faith, it also requires activating that faith by moving forward. He says hope is the desire to change the world for Jesus; faith is demonstrating it. He goes so far as to say, “If you are going to ask God to make the sun stand still, you better be prepared to march all night.”

Furtick not only lives his message and shares many everyday examples of audacious faith, he is bringing as many believers with him as possible. “There are concepts and contributions flowing inside you that need to be released for the world to hear. … Praying Sun Stand Still prayers … is about making your move, “ Furtick challenges. If you see God using you to change the world or even just a corner of it, this book will push you, encourage you and challenge you. If you desire to do something big for Christ, pick up this book. World-changers, this book is for you!

 ***I received a free copy of this book from Waterbrook Multnomah in exchange for my honest review of it posted here.


Mining for Diamonds said...

Wow...this sounds like an awesome book! I love this:

"Seizing his big purpose for your life … is about mining the depths of who you are in him."

That is my motto in life right now: "Mine the wealth that is within you".

We're in the same boat, sister...guess it's time to get out, huh? :D

Andrea said...

Yes, I want to be a "world changer!" Thanks for sharing! Hope you are doing well.
Big hugs, lots of love, and prayers,

Sandy Cooper said...

This is the second time this week I read some of these quotes...can't remember where I read them the first time.

Hmmmm...I better listen up.

Love love LOVE YOU!!!

Jill Beran said...

Lisa, you would not believe how I so needed to read this post right now!! Oh my, the last few days I've really been wrestling with things and entering that place where I quit dreaming. I've been overwhelmed with what's on my plate and thinking why add one more thing (this vision God's given), but like you I've been creating exactly what I want to avoid. Thank you so much for sharing and allowing God to slap me around a bit (in a good way!). I've read about this book before, but just now went and ordered it!! Blessings to you and thanks for sharing your journey!! ~ Jill