One of my summer highlights was a hike and overnight stay at Elfin Lakes in Garibaldi Provincial Park.
Thanks to Google images I had a picture in my mind as to what these two turquoise-coloured glacier fed lakes would look like. If truth be told these pictures in my mind provided me a great deal of inspiration during our 11 km hike up and through the mountain on one of the hottest days of the summer. For close to three hours we trekked swatting off bugs which were especially bad when we stopped for our water breaks.
I was elated when I hiked beyond the final crest to look down upon these two lakes, finding many fellow hikers swimming and finding their relief after their long trek. Diving into that lake and swimming across it will be remembered as one of my favorite swimming experiences.
As a young man, Isaiah testified in Isaiah 6:1 how he “saw the Lord high and lifted up”. In the midst of their national crisis of Assyrian and Babylonian rule and moral decay this young prophet became highly motivated and convinced that Yahweh can and is able to save his people. His ability to speak about the potential of God saving, delivering, and restoring the nation qualified him as a long-serving major prophet.
“How important as leaders to paint a really big picture, in front of ourselves and those we serve, of how great and amazing God is”
Just as I had the amazing images of Elfin Lakes in my mind to encourage me to keep going, despite the hard- ship of the climb, we need to do the same with our relationship with God and our ministries. At times we can feel discouraged, frustrated, and feel like giving up but we need to keep the mental picture of the goal ahead.
A few ideas on how to enlarge our picture of God include:
1. Rehearsing the Righteous Acts of God:
Judges 5:11 ASV - Far from the noise of archers, in the places of drawing water, There shall they rehearse the righteous acts of Jehovah, Even the righteous acts of his rule in Israel. Then the people of Jehovah went down to the gates.
2. Asking God to Enlighten your Eyes:
Psalm 13:3 .... “Look on me and answer, LORD my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death”.
3. Making room in your thoughts for God:
Psalm 107:11 - In all their thoughts there is no room for God.
Psalm 121: 7 A song of ascents. I lift up my eyes to the mountains-- where does my help come from?
4. Not always asking God to change our circumstance but instead asking for more of God within our circumstance.
5. Finding friends that encourage you spirituality:
I Samuel 12:24 – Samuel said to the people, “look what the Lord has”.
As I said, I find leadership much easier when I have a picture in my mind of what things could look like. I have found discussions about the future and vision casting much easier if I can describe this picture of a preferred future. Whether it is describing a new minis- try, an outreach event, church multiplication initiatives, or building projects it is important to see it so you can believe it. Helping people see it so they can believe it is a leadership quality that must be developed.