What will Vision do for a Leader?

by Poly Rouse

Their names are Jake and Lillian Leyenaar.  Let me tell you some of their story.  For nearly 50 years, Jake and Lillian Leyenaar have faithfully served with SEND (a ministry committed to making disciples among the unreached), touching lives in each of the places and roles where God placed them. Through their many experiences and the faithfulness of God, Jake and Lillian can recount many highlights, challenges, and principles for persevering and thriving in full-time, cross cultural ministry. Some of the principles that Jake and Lillian learned during these years that contributed to their commitment for the long haul include: (1) Be Open to God, (2) Be Flexible, (3) Be Faithful because God is Faithful, and (4) Focus on Relationships.

As we continue our journey in January on Vision let’s consider the Leyenaar’s story and long haul experiences.

  1.  Be Open to God …where every revealed vision should start.  Let the opportunities be numberless.  Let the possibilities be limitless.  Let God be God and reveal to us a God size opportunity without the possibility of us shutting it down before He has an opportunity to reveal His power.
  2. Be Flexible … I think it was in the mid 80’s while serving at Super Summer Texas that I came across this saying … “Great ministry always emphasizes being flexible”.  See where God is at work and joining Him there is a great vision position.  But it requires us to remove the wall of stubbornness and self-sufficiency to allow Him to lead.  I must adjust my plans, my agenda, and my desires to His.
  3. Be Faithful because God is Faithful … when we know what we are a part of is God leading, then it becomes somewhat easier to remain faithful.  I didn’t say easy, because that is never true.  But, when I know where I am going and that God is going before me, then staying the course and keeping my eyes on Jesus is a joy.
  4. Focus on Relationships … His vision is not something for me to accomplish outside of people coming to faith … people connecting deeper with Christ … people discovering His peace and comfort.  If the Vision is only about conquering a task or an event, then we’ve misunderstood the purpose of a Biblical vision.  God has always had people on His heart.  Luke 15 clearly communicates this truth.  from a lost sheep, to a lost coin, to a lost son … God’s message has always been about His love for His creation.

As I begin the journey into 2017 may these four statements ring true in my spirit. 

  • God, I want to be open to your activity. 
  • God, I want to be a flexible tool in your hands to see the Gospel impact lives. 
  • God, I desire to be faithful to the vision you’ve planted in my heart, even when it is hard.
  • God, I want to allow relationships to be the core that connects the vision.

How about you?

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