You start out on a journey, fairly confident about where you’re going and having a good idea as to how long it’s going to take. Although you are armed with the directions and you may have control of your vehicle, you are, however, not entirely sure of what you might encounter on the way. That is out of your control.
Many times I have mapped out a route; the computer route planner tells me it will take two and a half hours, and it also cleverly highlights the various attractions and services that are dotted along the route. “Great I’m on the way”. But, oops, just a few miles into the journey I find I’m making little headway because of the volume of traffic on the road (I hate traffic jams) or the motorway is jammed owing to an accident or one stretch of the road is closed due to repairs. I guess we’ve all experienced one or more of those occurrences. When these things happen
Vision, by its very nature, is always a ‘work-in-progress’ and therefore must be monitored. Too often leaders move forward with a vision without having in place a mechanism for ensuring the church or organisation they lead stays on track. Setting goals and targets is crucial (they are the equivalent of what the ‘route planner’ provides – directions, time, attractions and services) but we must have in place systems that will help us to see how far we’ve travelled, identify possible problems, delays, roadblocks etc., and decide what we should do with them. Leadership is about ‘navigating’ a way through the difficulties so that you get to the end of the journey.
As you embark on the vision plan it’s more than likely that you’ll have to make adjustments along the way because of unexpected happenings, situations or circumstances. In dealing with the unexpected you need to be aware of where you are in relation to the vision plan. If not, you can take a wrong turn, drift off course and ultimately lose your bearing. If the vision is to succeed effective monitoring must be done – knowing where you are, the distance travelled, the distance you now need to travel to reach the target, the resources you have available, etc. This will enable you to make any adjustments which need to be made along the way. Monitoring, with navigation, will inevitably build forward momentum. Vision needs momentum and pressure for it to advance.
“Leaders must be close enough to relate to others, but far enough ahead to motivate them.”
“You need to be aware of what others are doing, applaud their efforts, acknowledge their successes, and encourage them in their pursuits. When we all help one another, everybody wins.”
I press on toward the goal to win the [supreme and heavenly] prize to which Yahweh in Yahshua is calling us upward.
Commit your actions to Yahweh, and your plans will succeed.
New Living Translation
Therefore we must progress beyond the elementary instructions about [the Messiah] and move on to maturity.
In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.
Father Yahweh, thank you for the privilege of serving you in the work of your kingdom and being called to lead your people. Help me and my colleagues to stay true to the vision you’ve given and not to be deterred by the unexpected. Help us to put into practice the things we’ve learnt about staying on track. Enable us to diligently monitor every aspect of the journey as we endeavour to accomplish the vision. In these dark and tumultuous times, when we don’t know what is around the next corner, give us the courage, the wisdom, and the resources to ensure that in all things we stay aligned with your plans for us. In due time may the members rejoice and be encouraged as they see us moving ever closer to the goal.