Sunday, June 13, 2010

Visions of Importance – Part 2

In the first article, Visions of Importance – Part 1, I went into the basic philosophy of what I think are godly (mind’s eye) visions of importance. I made the statement:

“The Old Testament prophets tended to mediate God’s plans and his will to the people; our role in prophesy is different; it pertains more to our personal lives.”

People jump to all sorts of assertions when the very word “vision” is used. I’m referring to the practical skill of simply foreseeing potential and real events and circumstances—otherwise, the warnings and opportunities of life—and how these are relevant, personally, with regard to the will of God as we’re able to determine it.

(It might pay before we read further to re-read the previous paragraph and note especially the context i.e. where I’m coming from.)

Firstly, What Do I Mean by ‘Personal?’

Relationship with God is ostensibly personal. How we interact with others, however, is a huge input to this. It gives us a feel for where we’re ‘at’ personally and with God.

There is plenty of biblical evidence pointing us to the fact that God wants to be personal with us, building our characters in alignment with biblical truth and moral virtue a.k.a. the ‘fruit of the Spirit.’ Biblical Christianity is not about looking over the other side of the fence; it’s bathing within the confines of our own backyards, working on the things that are personally relevant in our walk with God.

This is why I love this:

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good;

and what does the Lord require of you

but to do justice, and to love kindness,

and to walk humbly with your God?”

~Micah 6:8 (NRSV).

We’re hence called personally; to discharge our faith responsibly; accountable—with effect—to God alone. It’s between us and God.

It’s never plainer than that, especially as we allow God to more continually search us.

Techniques Involved in Mind’s Eye Envisioning

These are very simple and many people are perhaps already doing them.

  1. Visual Prayer

We could call it a sort of ‘visual prayer’ using the mind’s eye, for simply training the mind to formally and informally capitalise on living situations is just God’s will for us—all of us.

God wants us thinking about our interaction with life. It’s only when we’re asking him to provide us with vision regarding the things we’re to prepare for, or maximise, can we expect to gain this insight—and for it to become more natural as we invest.

So, step one is to pray for better visual (mind’s eye) sight for warnings and opportunities—again, related to our personal lives—for growth, wisdom and better relationships.

  1. Feasting on God’s Word

Is this not a more general and pertinent requirement? Of course it is. Whatever we focus on we’re becoming. When we read lots of passages on the theme of love we become more loving and see warnings and opportunities related to love—what to do less of; what to do more of. This is the effect of meditating on God’s Word.

It’s the same with peace, grace, forgiveness and so on. We see here that God is merely making us more Spiritually aware and alive to the motioning of his Spirit.

So, step two is truly just honing our focus in the areas God is already speaking to us about i.e. those areas of our personal faith lives where we need to grow.

  1. Expectation

It can be frustrating at times when we’ve asked God for more of a Spiritual gift—or to grow in a specific area—and there’s a notable lag. Latency is something we struggle bearing. We wonder if God truly heard at all.

We must be patient. Further, we must be patiently expectant, prepared even to test the acquisition of this Spiritual insight. Who knows if we’ve even acquired something until we’ve had a go at it?

So, step three is both waiting patiently and faithfully and taking dips anyway.

The Outcome We’re Looking For

The mind’s eye makes “visions” less cryptic. We all have a mind’s eye—for instance, the use of our imagination prompted often by the heart of God in us—so therefore we can all see these sorts of visions, be they fleeting glimpses or more detailed images or movies.

When we’re finally seeing warnings and opportunities—and again I must stress, regarding our personal lives—routinely and without effort, we’re 80 percent there. (This can be still be spasmodic; recall it is God in control, not us.)

Having said all this, there will, however, still be the majority of times when we need to deliberately seek God to infuse us with vision regarding his will. In other words, never is it more important to pray.

© 2010 S. J. Wickham.

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