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  • We take what we do very, very seriously. We want to be the best group that has ever existed on the planet. When people say the 'Beatles,' 'Doors,' or the 'Grateful Dead,' we want them to say, GEN-14!" (Brutha Rich). By their style of clothing and presentation on stage, Gen-14, are true hip-hop rappers. If you watch them more closely, however, when they interact with people in the crowd, each other, or just an average "Joe," you notice there is something supernaturally different about them. Their countenance, words of affirmation, and most importantly, their heart after God, set them apart as revivalists, catalysts, and transformers of the world. "We are called to be a generation apart," Brutha Rich often says, who is a forerunner in Christian hip-hop, one of the most celebrated music genres of our time.','"We take what we do very, very seriously. We want to be the best group that has ever existed on the planet. When people say the 'Beatles,' 'Doors,' or the 'Grateful Dead,' we want them to say, GEN-14!" (Brutha Rich). By their style of clothing and presentation on stage, Gen-14, are true hip-hop rappers. If you watch them more closely, however, when they interact with people in the crowd, each other, or just an average "Joe," you notice there is something supernaturally different about them. Their countenance, words of affirmation, and most importantly, their heart after God, set them apart as revivalists, catalysts, and transformers of the world. "We are called to be a generation apart," Brutha Rich often says, who is a forerunner in Christian hip-hop, one of the most celebrated music genres of our time. This impressive group out of Redding, California, rightly believes that by tapping into "Third Heaven" (II Corinthians 12 Revelation 4) with their music, supernatural experiences of God's love and power will truly change this final generation of believers. Their name represents the Body of Christ-everyone who has believed from the New Testament church to the present and beyond! They refer to themselves as "five giant-slayers!" Rightly so. All uniquely different, they each bring an aspect of ministry and passion to their music. Brutha Rich is the group's fanatical and sociable representative; Demetrius (Surrenda), demonstrates a deeply zealous heart for people; Rob (RAWC), appears quieter, yet is not afraid to show his "realness," through his powerful lyrics; finally, Joe (Soul Cool) and Katrina (K-passion) are a husband-and-wife team that truly display a likeness to Jesus in their paradoxical mixture of humility and courage. After only being together one year, they first ministered at Bethel Church in April 2005. The response was absolutely crazy! Everyone stood to their feet yelling at the end of their song, "Not on My Watch." On the front row, Pastor Beni jumped out of her chair, pumping her fist in the air, and Pastor Bill and Pastor Danny stood up with the look of proud fathers. Bill said, "We want to pray and bless these guys." Suddenly, around 150 of the 300 people there that night came up to the front, jumping over chairs and running up the aisles. Gen-14 was so encircled that they were completely out of sight. "All of a sudden," Brutha Rich said, "I felt someone stick money in my hand. Then Bill said, 'Yeah, why don't you go ahead and throw money at them.' So, people just started throwing money at us. There were even 6 to 10-year-old kids throwing dollars at us. It just blew me away when I saw the video later on." Then Bill prayed, "We send them out." This prayer and support from all the leaders at Bethel has been key to their development and growth as a team. They are so dedicated to being in the Body of Christ and being supported by the Body that they have partnered with several church leaders specifically for accountability and direction. They were asked to minister again at the "Jesus Culture" Youth Conference in July. The air was thick with anticipation as youth from all over the country gathered to receive all that God had to give. Multi-colored lights flashed across the stage and the enthusiastic crowd crammed together at the front of the sanctuary. Gen-14 took their mics and the beat started in an east-Indian xylophonic sound. A chuckle of confidence and Demetrius began the potent words from the song, "Not on my Watch" once again: These secular heads claiming to be hip-hop immortals. They talkin' about that they got our kids on lock. Their message unfolded as the song continued . . . Secular rappers and labels have publicized their mission to "lock" this generations' kids on their twisted ideas, morality, and persuasions. Their influence has infiltrated every area of society including clothing, music, video games and sports labels. These "artists" have testified that their music industry has overwhelmed parental values and control. The song is a clear message of opposition to the secular music industry, but it is also a message to the "sleeping giant" in the modern church. Gen-14 testifies: You think you're immortal, but you are going to die and you will stand in judgment. But there are people rising up that are going to stand on the wall and say, "Not on my watch. You will no longer infect and poison our children." It's very important for parents to understand what is being said about their kids and about them. If you don't do your job, someone is going to do it for you. It's really a wake-up call to parents and children to say, "Listen. You have got to watch what your kids intake. You've got to be the example to your kids." It's also a wake-up call to the church to stand as a watchman at the gates of your city, watching what comes into your city and to release heaven in your city. The chorus of "Not on My Watch" adamantly states: They wanna take our kids, NO! They wanna shape our kids, NO! We generation 14, the chosen seed. You cannot have our kids, You cannot grab our kids, We gonna disciple and train 'em and let 'em take control! NOT ON MY WATCH, NOT ON MY WATCH NOT ON MY WATCH, NOT ON MY WATCH I'm a man, standing on the wall! This song will send chills down the back of anyone with a clear conscience. They are not ho-humming their way through their Christian walk, but proclaiming victory and strategizing to overtake the devil's meager strategies. But they don't only minister through music. They have been known to visit homes where the sick and dying are bedridden. Interacting with their fans doesn't scare them. Neither do those who need prayer, deliverance, or a prophetic word of kindness. They appear striking with their "realness" and vulnerability as regular people. Of course, they have the exception of being blessed with incredible talent. Their greatest strength lies in their unity as a team. And it is their unity and strength that will propel them to even further influence in society. When you meet a passionate person, you can't help but be inspired to want more passion yourself. When you meet five intensely passionate people in one music group, you are in for more than a wake-up call! They are truly remarkable people. As time unfolds, you will witness the transformation of a people, a music genre, and even a nation. God told them to, "Make His name famous." They will.
  • "Your name was to be Sarah for princess, but I name you Mary for the bitterness I feel at not being able to watch you grow and you not being able to know me as your mother. But Martha will be your mother and you will love her as she is your wonderful sister.”, 'Martha was truly a lovely child. She knew her parents loved her and they were a very happy family. YHWH had blessed them indeed. Martha's father owned a very successful business that prospered them greatly. They had a large house and several servants to help run the house. But even though most everything was wonderful, and they thanked their God for all their blessings, there was sadness in the house. You see, Martha's parents had always wanted a house full of children, but it had never come to be. Martha herself had cried out to God because she wanted someone to share all her blessings with, and then there was that sadness from her parents that was always near. As Martha grew, she showed an aptitude for managing whatever task was given to her. Martha's mother taught her how to run the house using the staff. Her father took her to the family business and taught her how to manage all the workers and the buying and selling of their products and supplies. Her parents would often say how wonderful Martha was. Yes, she was like a daughter and a son. Year after year Martha's mother cried out to the God who delivers asking Him to deliver her from bareness, but it had never happened... until... One day, in her advanced years, she realized she was pregnant. Oh, how the house rejoiced. Martha's father didn't care that he was older; he was going to have another child. Martha's mother would talk with people in the region and say, "I'm changing my name to Sarah, for I am old and God has blessed my womb. "And then they would all laugh. Martha was so excited. She wove a special blanket for the child that would be her brother or sister. She was 14 years old, and she couldn't have been more excited. She had been betrothed to Asher for years, and as soon as she turned 15 they would be wed. This would take the sting out of her leaving her home and joining Asher in a neighboring city. The family would talk over all the names they thought would be good. Lazarus if it was a boy because it meant God's help and surely this child would bring help to their home. Or Sarah if it was a girl because she would be their little princess. Even though advanced in years, Martha's mother went through the pregnancy without any trouble. Then the day came; she gave birth to a boy and named him Lazarus. But the pains didn't stop. The midwives watched as a foot started to emerge from the womb. "Twins. "they all exclaimed. But the foot meant the baby was coming the wrong way. They quickly went about trying to turn the baby. Finally, the child came, a girl child. But the stress of the delivery had taken the very life out of Martha's mother. After several hours of the women trying to take care of Martha's mother, they knew there was nothing else to be done, and she was about to leave this world. She called Martha over to her bedside and weakly whispered, "Martha, you now have to take on another job. You must help your father raise these two children. Remember to love them more than anything else. Martha, I'm commissioning them into your care. " Martha's father brought the babies in to their mother and laid one on each side. Because of all the excitement of the birth, they had not officially named the girl child. As Martha's mother looked at her, she smiled, and said, "Your name was to be Sarah for princess, but I name you Mary for the bitterness I feel at not being able to watch you grow and you not being able to know me as your mother. But Martha will be your mother and you will love her as she is your wonderful sister. " And with that, she entered into Abraham's bosom. Great wailing went on in their house. People came from the surrounding region to pay their respects to the family because the family had been known to be righteous before their God and generous to all who knew them. There was such sorrow at the passing, and yet such joy at the birth of the beautiful twins. After several weeks, Asher came to visit Martha. They spoke of their future together. Martha told him of her mother's request for her to help to raise her brother and sister. For Asher, taking on two babies was going to be difficult. It would be even more difficult because he would not be in a father position. How would this work? And there was the problem of Martha being miles away after their marriage. How could she care for the children? Would her father allow them to be taken by Martha to her new home? If not, what then? Martha remembered her mother's last words to her, "Martha, I'm commissioning them into your care. " Martha knew this would be terribly hard for Asher. So in her grief over her mother's death and the commission she had been given, she told Asher that he must find someone else. She knew her God would want her to take care of her father and the babies. She had always been a girl that would go the extra mile to help. Her heart had always been tender to those in need. During the next 5 years, Martha raised Lazarus and Mary to honor God and their father. She couldn't have loved them more if they had been born from her womb. She also began taking over more of the business dealings from her father. After her mother had died, he seemed to lose interest in everything but the children. He would rather spend time with them than go to work. Martha now was not only daughter and son, but also a mother and businesswoman. She was so efficient in all her tasks that no one thought that it might be too much for this young woman. After 5 years, Martha's father became very ill. Martha had the servants take turns sitting by his bed every night in case he might awaken and need something. One night, one of the servants came running into her room. "Martha, Martha, your father is calling for you. " She immediately ran to his room. "Father, what is it. " "Marth. "her father said in a very weak voice, "It's time I went to be with your mother. " Martha cried, "No, father. The children need you. " He smiled and said, "No, daughter, they need you. You have been a daughter, sister, mother, and have been in charge of the family business. Now it is time for you to become a father also. God has graced you with the most wonderful, caring heart. I know He is as proud of you as I am. " With that last word to her, her father drew his last breath. It's so strange how heartbreak can come in such huge waves that you think you cannot survive, but life goes on anyway. Martha had to settle her heart on raising the twins and running the family business. She felt this was what God had called her to do. Lazarus and Mary both had sensitive spirits. Lazarus loved to fish and many times brought home dinner for the table. Mary loved to sit and sing to their God. She made up songs and poems about Him and His promise of a Messiah. One day Lazarus came home and told her of meeting a man named Jesus. Martha said she had heard of this Jesus. He was the son of Mary and Joseph in Nazareth. His followers had told Lazarus many stories of Jesus healing people. Martha had heard stories, also. Who was this Jesus? She was curious about all the stories. She told Lazarus the next time he saw Jesus, invite him to eat a meal with them. The very next day Lazarus came running back to the house. "Martha, Martha, Jesus is coming to our home for a meal. And Martha, all his disciples are coming with him." Martha raised an eyebrow at Lazarus, but it didn't even phase him. Jesus and his twelve men were coming to this home for dinner this very night. Martha set about getting the servants together to prepare the meal. That night started a deep friendship between Jesus, Martha, Mary and Lazarus. After the meal, they would all sit around and listen to Jesus teach. He was the wisest and profound man Martha had ever heard. She had not heard anything like this from even the temple priests or the rabbis that came to her home. She had heard the rumors about Jesus healing the sick and casting out demons; signs and wonders following Him everywhere he went. Now she knew they weren't rumors. Now whenever Jesus was in the district, he would stop by to see their family. Sometimes Jesus' mother, Mary, would come with him. Even though Mary was older than Martha, the two became close friends. After all the house had bedded down for the night, Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Martha would sit and Mary would talk of all the wonders she had seen in her travels with her son. One night, with tears in her eyes, Mary told Martha about that destiny-filled night when the angel appeared to her and told her she was to have a son. It was like Martha already knew and this just confirmed to her that what she had been feeling was true. No one had ever taught or done the miracles like Jesus. He had to be the Son of God, the Messiah. When Martha heard that Jesus was in the district once again, she sent her servant out to meet Him and ask him to come and share a meal at her house. Of course, Jesus accepted and Martha hurriedly started to prepare the meal with Mary and the servants' help. When she heard them coming up to the house, she hurried out to the door to greet them. Jesus and His men, what a group, she thought. So many different backgrounds and they were all so wonderful, well, most of them. She greeted Jesus, Matthew, John, and then there was Peter who came up and swung her around, with Martha protesting strongly, but loving every minute of it. The best cook in the district, he would say, was Martha. All the rest filed in, and then came Judas. Martha nodded her head in recognition. She didn't trust that man. It so puzzled her why Jesus would have him in His company. It was obvious to her that the character of Judas was not very good. As they settled in, Martha returned to the kitchen. So much still left to do. "Mar. "she called, "would you get the cups ready ". Not hearing an answer, she called out again. Looking around she didn't see Mary anywhere in the kitchen. Where was that girl? She was with me when I greeted our guests. Martha went and peeked around the corner looking where all the guests were seated, and there was Mary. She was sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening to every word. Martha quietly went in and whispered to Mary, "I have some things for you to do for the meal. "Mary was always obedient so Martha didn't wait for an answer, she just turned and walked back to the kitchen believing that Mary would be right behind her. She busied herself with the preparations. In a few minutes, she realized that Mary still hadn't come into the kitchen. Martha went back to where Jesus was sitting and there was Mary, still sitting at his feet, listening intently to everything He had to say. Martha again quietly went in and told Mary to come and help. And again, after a few minutes, she realized Mary had not obeyed her. This time it wasn't just that she needed the help...it was that Mary was not being obedient. This time Martha went in quietly and waited until Jesus stopped speaking and someone else was talking. She leaned over and whispered to Him, "Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to do all the serving alone "? He shook His head yes, to signify that He did care, and Martha went on, "Then tell her to help me. " Jesus smiled at Martha and softly spoke to her, "Martha, Martha, you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only one thing is necessary, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her. " As he finished saying these words, He gently pulled Martha down so she was also sitting at His feet. At that moment, an unveiling of her mind happened. She received the revelation of what He was saying; the words that He was speaking would have an effect for them for all eternity. She had heard Him quote before the Scripture that man shall not live on bread alone, but by every word that comes from God. And didn't she believe that He was the Messiah? Hadn't Mary, Jesus' mother, told her about His birth? Yes, this was the better portion. This was more important. It may take the food a little longer to get on the table, but this is the better way. So that's my story. Fiction... maybe. Of course, we won't know until we get to heaven and "know all about it. "But I like this story. The reason? I am a Martha. I've been a Martha all my life. I would be the one serving, the one working. I never resented the Marys of this world, although sometimes I would observe them and wish I could be like them. I just felt we had different roles. I didn't do my Martha-ing out of performance mode (anyway most of the time), I did it because those are my gifts and I like serving whether it's hospitality or paperwork. My nephew would walk to my office from his school and wait for me so I could take him home when I got off. He was sitting in my office one day and said that I looked like I really liked my work. I told him I did. To me work was fun. He looked at me like I was a little crazy, but that is the truth. I love doing "stuff. "I'm gifted in that area. I have a gift of administration. I am working in my gifting and that is a good thing. Martha was also gifted. She was also working in her gifting right at that time, hospitality. I have gotten tired of hearing Martha put down year after year; Mary's is the better way, so we tend to disrespect Martha for what she was doing. I know that Mary sitting with Jesus was the better way because that is what He said. And I'm not going to go into the "we have to be balanced" mode. I feel so many people think that Martha was a shrew, that she went into Jesus and in a loud voice proclaim her dissatisfaction with Mary. Martha wasn't bad, or even insensitive, she was doing what she thought was good. She was making Jesus and His disciples their meal. They needed the meal; they needed the nourishment from food. But there were others that could help her. People think that Mary was His favorite because she initially chose the better. And of course He loved Lazarus; after all, He raised Him from the dead. When Lazarus died, who was it that went out to meet Jesus? John 11:20 "Martha therefore, when she heard that Jesus was coming, went to meet Him, but Mary stayed at the house. "Mary had listened to the teaching but missed the power behind the words. Both Mary and Martha said the same things to Jesus, but Martha at least went to Him while Mary had to be called out to Him. Now please don't think that I'm disrespecting Mary. She found the better way! But then, I believe, Martha did too. And through this story, I also have found a better way. Eight years ago, Jesus said, "I'm going to teach you how to be a Mary. "Teach me, He has. It is a better way! Have I given up my Martha's way? No, those are my gifts and I love to serve in all the different areas of my giftings. But, to sit at Jesus' feet...to listen to His heartbeat for this world...for me...for you...this is the best. To worship Him. To give Him my heart, time and time again, because I seem to end up with it instead of leaving it with Him. To know He will take my heart and treasure it time and time again because that's the way He is. Yes, this is the best. So all you Marthas arise. He's waiting for you to quiet yourself and sit at His feet. He's waiting, not to scold you for working or for something you've done wrong. He's waiting to tell you how much He loves you. It takes courage to listen to Him say "I love you" when you don't think you deserve it. Be courageous. Go! Your strength and the better thing is choosing to sit at the feet of Jesus, not to work out of duty, but out of a relationship with Jesus. John 11:5 says "Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus." Why didn't he mention Mary? He is just showing us that He loves all us Martha's. Did He mean to slight Mary? Of course not. He just wanted to tell the Martha's of the world He loves us. Sometimes I think my new name is Martha Mary, but then there are other times I think it's Mary Martha. I like them both. I like doing "stuff. "but I love sitting at His feet, and that's the best!
  • "A man without a vision is a man without a future. A man without a future will always return to his past." "A knife cuts because it has a narrow focus" (Cleddie Keith). "A coward dies a thousand deaths, but a brave man dies only once" (Roman soldiers)."When God predetermined our destiny, He factored in our stupidity. Therefore there 's always enough time to finish?"(Larry Randolph). "The level of sacrifice that an environment requires will determine the size of people that will follow" (Kris Vallotton). A progressive revelation of an ageless revival for our generation is growing in our hearts. It is for those who went before us and for those who are yet to be born. Yet, the question of how the vision is to be implemented remains. One famous Proverb says, "Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, but happy is he who keeps the law" (Proverbs 29:18). Vision is the bridge between the present and the future. Without it we perish or go "unrestrained," as the New American Standard Bible puts it. Vision gives pain a purpose. Those without vision spend their lives taking the path of least resistance as they try to avoid discomfort. The level of sacrifice that a vision requires will determine the size of people who follow. Sacrifice separates the small from the great. Consider the example of a young man who has just graduated from high school and joins the military. As soon as he steps off the boot camp bus, the sergeant starts yelling at him. He has to march over to the barbershop and get his head shaved. Then he is up early in the morning to exercise with someone screaming at him and talking about his mother. Just a month before, he was in high school. He would have never put up with any of this nonsense from his teachers or classmates. But somehow his whole mindset has changed. Why? He is enduring the "cross" so to speak, because of the joy on the other side of it. He realizes that boot camp is preparing him for a greater destiny. His vision of the future is giving his present physical discomfort meaning and purpose. So many of us go through life not understanding the purposes of our trials. We spend our days walking a crooked path, believing that every obstacle in the road is a problem and something to be avoided. The second part of this Proverb says, "But happy is he who keeps the Law." The law isn't just something God gave to Moses. It is also the restraint, boundaries and disciplines we develop around our life to direct us through obstacles instead of around them. These obstacles become baptisms of fire that forge our character so we can attain and maintain a life of greatness. WHAT IS VISION? Vision is what we see, but it is also the way in which we see. Vision is the lens that interprets the events of our life, the way we view people and our concept of God. If we have a scratch on our glasses, it may seem like everybody around us has scratches too, but the problem actually lies with us because our vision is impaired. Jesus said that our eyes are the windows of our heart. Paul prayed that the eyes of our heart would be enlightened. In other words, we perceive with our eyes but we see with our hearts. Our minds receive images from our eyes but our heart interprets these images. If our heart becomes bitter, jealous, hurt osome wayme way infected, the lens of our heart is distorted. What we perceive is happening and what is really going on could be two completely different things. Jesus said,"You will know the truth and the truth will make you free" (John 8:32). The word truth used here is not referring to the Bible itself, (although all truth is rooted in the Bible) but here the word truth means reality. Jesus is saying, you will understand what is real and that will free you. So many of us live in a virtual reality. The way we view life can feel and look real, or make perfect sense, but still not be real at all. Have you ever watched a good movie and gotten totally into it? You experience all the emotions of real life. You may even leave the theater still"feeling" the movie, but it was just a movie? it was never real. The truth is: we see what we believe to be true. Another way to put it is, if you have the wrong pretext you will misunderstand the context. Having a revelation of what is real will deliver us from a life of torment that virtual reality often causes. ESTABLISHING CORE VALUES Therefore, the things we believe to be true determine the way in which we interpret life. These"things" are called"core values." Core values are the lens or eyes of our heart. It is important for us to realize the incongruence between what our core values presently are and what we really want them to be. Often, the things we say we believe and the things we actually believe are not the same. We must understand that it is not the truths that we believe in our head that are our core values, but rather the ones we believe in our heart. The things we perceive to be true determine the way we respond to the world around us and to God who lives within us. These core values also help define the part of the flock that we find ourselves called and attracted to. The children of Israel experienced this principle when they came into the Promised Land. Joshua assigned land to them according to their tribes and divisions (Joshua 18:10). In other words, they received land according to their diverse visions. For instance, if they had a vision for farming, they probably did not go with Caleb to the mountain country but instead were given land that best facilitated their vision. Therefore the land they were given and their vision was congruent. From this perspective, it is not very hard to see how some church splits happen. Sometimes pastors, in their zeal to build their churches, attract people that have a vision for things that their churches or"land" (metaphorically speaking) will not sustain. This dual vision eventually ends up in di-vision. FORESIGHT, INSIGHT OVERSIGHT True Godly vision consists of foresight, insight and oversight that come from His sight. Foresight is like looking at life through a telescope. This outlook allows us to know what is ahead as it connects us to our future. Foresight is the element of vision that helps life make sense and gives us the motivation that we described earlier. Insight is like viewing life through a microscope. This perception gives us an understanding of why things happen in life. It also helps determine the underlying motivations of the heart. Oversight puts life into context. It is like flying over our house in a helicopter. There is a perspective that we can only receive from this vista that helps us understand where we are with respect to where everything else is. The sons of Issachar are great examples of this kind of vision. The book of I Chronicles says that these men understood the times and had knowledge of what Israel should do (12:32). People that are blessed with this type of vision often have great wisdom concerning the seasons of life. His sight assures us that the vision we have is from God. A vision from the Lord creates a mission from heaven. This is illustrated in the life of Moses when he went up on the mountain, received a vision of the tabernacle, and was told to construct it according to the pattern that he had received. (Exodus 24:16-28:43) Visions like this are just"pipe dreams" without some sort of administrative plan to complete them. A lot of people have lofty ideas about things they would like to accomplish for God but they seem to have no sense of how to see the dream fulfilled. There are entire books dedicated to this subject, therefore, I will just give an overview of how to accomplish a vision. PRACTICAL IMPLEMENTATION The first part of accomplishing any vision is to take it from the unseen world and bring it into the natural realm. This can be accomplished by simply writing down the vision. Articulating the vision on paper pulls the dream that is in your spirit (that no one can see but you) into the visible world so that others can capture it in their own hearts. Tools that help to visualize the mission such as architectural drawings, models, testimonies of others who have accomplished similar dreams, or visits to places that have a common purpose are all helpful in capturing and defining the vision for both yourself and others who will come alongside and help. Habakkuk puts it this way: "Then the LORD answered me and said, 'Record the vision and inscribe it on tablets, that the one who reads it may run. For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it; for it will certainly come, it will not delay" (Habakkuk 2:2-3). There is an old story about three bricklayers that helps illustrate what it looks like when people receive motivation from taking ownership of a vision: There were three bricklayers working beside each other on a wall. Someone came up to the first one and said,"What are you doing""What's it look like I am doing?" he replied sarcastically,"I am laying bricks!" The man asked the next guy on the wall what he was doing. He said,"Can't you see what I am doing? I am building a wall." Then the last man was asked what he was doing. He exclaimed,"I am building a great cathedral for God!" Who do you think will do the best quality work and be the hardest worker? Vision causes people to love their work because they can see the big picture. Someone once said,"If you want to build a great ship, you can go out and find some talented craftsman or you can find a person who loves the sea." Imparting God 's vision to the team around us is the single most important factor in seeing the mission accomplished. The next step is to create a plan to accomplish the mission. The Bible says,"Without consultation, plans are frustrated, but with many counselors they succeed; the plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the LORD" (Proverbs 15:22 16:1). From these two verses we see that although the vision must be from God Himself, men are to help develop the plan that brings about the fulfillment of the vision. Notice how Solomon highlights the fact that developing plans in a vacuum, (without the expertise and insight of others who have different gifts and perspectives than we do), will ultimately end in frustration. It's important for administrative people to understand that they are there to administrate the mission. The word administrate means,"add-to-the-mission," not change the mission. Visionaries often do not like to work with administrators because by nature administrators are refiners and finishers. Sometimes administrators do not understand that they are being brought in to help visionaries determine how something should be accomplished, not what should be accomplished. If the vision is so large that it requires the help of Heaven (which it often does when it really is from God), it will be important that the visionary impart the vision and the faith to see it accomplished to the team. First Timothy 1:4 says that the administration of God is"by faith." FEAR COUNTERACTS FAITH People often disguise their fear as wisdom when they enter into a supernatural mission that can only be accomplished with the help of God. Moses had this problem when he sent the twelve spies in to the Promised Land to determine where they should enter. Ten of the spies misunderstood their mission and somehow thought they were being asked whether or not they should take the land at all. This type of misunderstanding of the roles people are invited to play in the mission has caused the demise of so many would-be miracles, paralyzing the church of the living God. For years, the people of God have often settled for what can be accomplished by human effort and ability, because we have allowed the opinion of faithless people to determine what we will achieve, instead of being faithful (faith-filled) to the vision we saw"on the mountain". This is a perversion of the gospel of the kingdom. We should never settle for anything less than what God told us to do. SETTING GOALS After the plan is established, goals must be set. The Bible says,"I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:14). Goals are simply the vision broken down into smaller pieces that are measurable in time and space. In other words, they are specified parts of the mission that we will accomplish by a predetermined date. Many people don't like to set goals because they think that if they are not able to accomplish them on time, they have failed. The truth of the matter is that,"If you fail to plan you plan to fail." Great leaders know that setting goals is what gives the mission a sense of urgency. Urgency is a friend to managers as it sets the pace for those who are carrying out the mission. If wisdom is used in goal setting, very little management is needed to motivate the workers since urgency manages them. However, be careful not to give your workers more to do than they have the faith to accomplish in a given time period. If it is too much, they will not even try, just like trying to catch a bus when it is already a block ahead. You probably won't even run after it, as there is so little possibility of you catching up to it. On the other hand, if the bus just starts to pull away from the curb when you get there, you will probably move out of your comfort zone to try to catch it. Yet, setting goals too low will not create a sense of urgency at all. People will not be very motivated and it will result in a lot more work for the managers. The final stage of seeing the mission accomplished is establishing your steps. Proverbs says,"The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps" (16:9). Psalms says,"The steps of a man are established by the Lord, and He delights in his way. When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the one who holds his hand" (37:23-24). Steps are your day-in, day-out walk with God: the step-by-step, moment-by-moment, hour-by-hour decisions you make and the things you do that take up your time and use up your life. When your vision is honestly birthed by God Himself, He will be delighted to direct your steps. The most important thing to remember about your steps is that they should be found somewhere in your mission. Go back through your planner from the previous month and retrace your steps. Does it look like they are directly attached to your mission? If not, either redefine your mission or redirect your steps. Remember, history is at stake!