Hey there, Sunshine! ☀️ A NEW YEAR is just upon us, and it’s time for Vision Inventory.
A glimpse inside this blog:
If you’re reading this, maybe YOU HAVE A VISION, but are not quite sure what to do with it. Or, maybe you feel YOU DON’T HAVE A VISION at all, but believe you should. Then, you might be that person who has A CLEAR VISION AND A PLAN, and you’re just here trying to see if I can offer any more insight that could help affirm what you’re already doing. In any case, my hope is that what I’ll share from my experiences, and what God has given me, will truly help you get to a better place. Not just in the physical sense, but spiritually; for it is my opinion that vision IS spiritual…period. So, as I delve into inventorying vision, here are the areas I’ll cover. Feel free to head straight to any of them, or follow sequentially.
- Taking Inventory
- Seeing the Vision
- Preparing for the Vision
- Right People for the Vision
- Be Persistent in the Vision
- Preserve the Vision
- Practice and Pray for the Vision
Note: At the end of this article, you’ll find a New Year’s Self-Inventory Guide you can print and use to help you conduct your own personal assessment.
Vision is not merely the things we can see before our eyes, but the aspirations, plans, and hopes we’ve only envisioned in the far recesses of our minds. By definition, apart from visual sight, vision is also defined as –
a thought, concept, or object formed by the imagination; a manifestation to the senses of something immaterial; the act or power of imagination; mode of seeing or conceiving; unusual discernment or foresight.MERRIAM-WEBSTER’S UNABRIDGED DICTIONARY
For some, their vision is very clear; while to others, their vision is a bit scattered and foggy, and could use a stronger lens to help bring it into focus. To help with that, I believe the best way to bring focus to vision is to start by evaluating it.
Listen. As we prepare for years-end, we as individuals need to do much like a business or organization would do during this time. WE NEED TO TAKE INVENTORY. Inventory (or an audit) is needed in order to both identify and preserve our VISION.
Inventory, as it relates to an individual, refers to a list of traits, preferences, attitudes, interests, or abilities used to evaluate personal characteristics or skills. In the general sense, however, inventory is also related to determining the quantity of goods or materials on hand.
For our personal year-end inventory, we need to determine what we have left in us. So, of our traits, preferences, attitudes, interests, or abilities…we’ll probably need to review the following:
- What served us well in 2021?
- Are we in the RED (-) or BLACK (+)?
- What can be rolled over?
- Can anything be liquidated so that we still receive some gain from the losses?
- What things in our lives need to be “discontinued” …FOR GOOD?
- What can bring us gains in 2022?
- How can we serve or be an impact to others (family, friends, community)?
These are all relevant questions that a business would consider. But Sis, in case you didn’t know…YOU are your business. You’re the boss…and bosses don’t cancel, and they don’t quit.
What’s different from you and a physical commercial organization, though, is that regardless of the report, you’re not going out of business, and you don’t have to file bankruptcy. What you need to move forward is still within you, with the full power to manifest a profit. You just have to see it.
See the Vision
Proverbs 29:18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” But, I love how the Message Bible puts it into perspective: “If people can’t see what God is doing, they stumble all over themselves; But when they attend to what he reveals, they are most blessed.” Isn’t that the truth? Truly, the the biggest problem we have with plans and visions…is our inability to control them.
One of my favorite scriptures concerning vision is Habakkuk 2:2-3 (GNT) which says,
“The Lord gave me this answer: “Write down clearly on tablets what I reveal to you, so that it can be read at a glance. 3 Put it in writing, because it is not yet time for it to come true. But the time is coming quickly, and what I show you will come true. It may seem slow in coming, but wait for it; it will certainly take place, and it will not be delayed.”
The more senses we use to recall information, the more likely we are to retain it. So, if we think it, read it, write it down, say it, and hear it…the better our chances are of remembering it or buying into what we’ve envisioned. It also helps to give life to it; but more importantly, writing it down helps to hold us accountable to it.
Preparing for the Vision
Once your vision has life, set yourself some short- as well as long-term goals. It’s usually helpful that your short-term goals feed into or lead to your long-term goals. For example, if I desired a career shift…Is there a degree or certification required for that? At a minimum, I would need to apply; but I may also need to take some classes. So, my short goal would be to apply for the job or apply to the class. Completion of this task would be a short-term goal which supported my long-term goal. Just know that your long-term goal can’t manifest if the short-term goal fails to take the lead. I call these specific and implied tasks. Remember, you’re on a vision journey with some distance ahead of you; but if you don’t fuel up, you’re not going to get there.
Right People for the Vision
As you identify your goals, it’s sometimes best to focus on one thing at a time and do that thing well; especially if you’re a one-person team or have limited supporters. You could experience mental and emotional burnout otherwise and risk not completing anything. That’s not the results we want; so be intentional about your boundaries and your mental health.
With that said, pray that God would put the right people in your path to help you achieve your goals and to help hold you accountable to those goals. Though you are working towards YOUR goals and YOUR vision, you can’t do everything alone. Again, however, ask God to identify who’s on your team. Know that it’s not…AND IT CAN’T BE…everybody….and that’s ok. Trust that there are those who have been divinely put in place and assigned to assist you on your path.
Be Persistent in the Vision
In this past season you may have experienced stress, discouragement, or lack of motivation. You may have even experienced some depression and anxiety for one reason or many. Listen. It’s completely okay and natural if that’s a part of your reality. Here’s the thing…just don’t let that be a place of shame and restriction that you somehow stay in.
Recall the scripture Psalm 23:3 which begins by saying, ” He restores my soul…” But just after the restoration, “He leads me in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake.” After restoration comes instructions; so, don’t get too comfortable.
Do what you need to do to be ok and to process through those thoughts and emotions, then get back in the game. Getting back to yourself may only require simple self-care. It could require therapy. To thine own self be true.
But, know that your purpose and vision are waiting on you. They’re not gonna move until you do. James 2:17 says, “So it is with faith: if it is alone and includes no actions, then it is dead.” You must be willing to do the work.
Preserve the Vision
As you complete your inventory and work to better steward your vision, your next goal is not only to produce the vision but to also preserve it. It’s easy to rush right into wanting to produce, but preservation is also necessary; especially since the exact timing of the vision is unknown. Remember…
“For the vision is yet for an appointed time;Habakkuk 2:3 NKJV
But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
Because it will surely come,
It will not tarry.
In order to preserve your vision, you’ll need to stay focused, encouraged, and consistent in the plan and vision given to you; regardless of how things may seem, what people may say, or apart from the evidence of what may have happened in the past.
I know that’s sometimes easier said than done; but My Sister (or Brother)… God did not bring you this far…to bring you this far. Can you see where you’re headed? If you need a little help and motivation, the final steps should offer great assistance.
Practice and Pray for the Vision
Even if you’re not there yet, practice being what you see. Walk in the way, speak in the way, dress in the way, pray in the way, study in the way, work in the way, give in the way, heal in the way, love in the way, forgive in the way you envision for your life.
If you can’t see the vision, you might want to consider constructing a vision board that will serve as a constant reminder to you of what you’re working towards. If you need help with that, there are plenty of influencers on the internet, Pinterest, and on YouTube to give you ideas.
I’ve only done a vision board a couple of times. Personally, vision boards are not really my thing, because the things I envision FOR ME, God has not yet created and no one else has it. So… I can’t cut it out of a magazine. I believe what 1 Corinthians 2:9 says,
But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
So, in place of a vision board, I use journaling, calendars and prayer. Some might call my method a vision book; except, I don’t use pictures. I prefer words; but you do what is most comfortable for you and stimulates your motivation. My stimulation comes through writing.
There’s nothing that I write on my calendar that I don’t pray about. Heck, there’s nothing that I write in my blog that I don’t pray about. I ask God to bless every word I write and every person who will read it. Not taking it lightly, and leaving nothing to chance.
I ask God, “Is THIS what you want me to do?” And no matter how focused or excited I may be towards a plan or a post, I’m too scared to be disobedient to what God says. Plus, I’ve learned disobedience waste A LOT of time. But, as I write my vision down and take it to God, He continues to streamline it for me and continues to make the vision clearer. As I pray to Him, my desires align more and more to His will.
As you go into the New Year, be intentional about prayer and time with God. Find an in-person or online Bible Study or group that you feel comfortable with, but also challenges you to heal and grow. Choose a daily devotion that speaks to your need for growth. I, of course, offer my FREE DOWNLOADABLE 7 Beginning Steps to Devoting Daily Time with God – Checklist & Step-by-Step Guide is available to help with that; as well as my 5-Day Morning COFFEE Devotion. Both, I truly believe help to bring focus and a positive mindset for communing with God, as well as to deepen one’s faith walk. Likewise, the YouVersion Bible App has hundreds of devotions available for any need or concern, and is a great and convenient resource.
In the meantime, just begin to ask God to make His vision in the next season clear for you. And know that sometimes we may want to go in one direction, but He might be saying, “I equipped and called you for THIS instead.” Be assured, if He placed the vision in you…you can trust the process. Even when it seems you’re headed for the wilderness, remember the wilderness is uninhabit-ED, not uninhabit-ABLE.
Watch for the NEW THING I am going to do.
It is happening already—you can see it now!
I will make a road through the wilderness
and give you streams of water there.Isaiah 43:19
Here’s to Great Vision
Well, My Sister…this is another one for the history books. Though we still face many challenges, I pray that this next year is the best year yet. And that regardless of what it brings, because you’ll be the best version of yourself, you’ll steward it well. So, as the saying goes, “Darling, you’ll never be able to compete with me…because …I WANT YOU…TO WIN TOO!”
Take care, Sunshine!
Here is to a great NEW YEAR, Sunshine! Please, connect with me and share with me the vision God has given you for 2022. If you need an accountability partner or someone to help you bring all your thoughts together, I’d love to guide you through the process. Contact me for a consultation. Let’s talk.
For help with your goals and vision for 2022, don’t forget to grab the FREE New Year’s Self-Inventory Guide.
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As I mentioned before, you could choose to do this alone, or grab a friend or two and take the journey together; all while becoming stronger C.O.F.F.E.E. – Chicks of Faith, Focused, Encouraged and Empowered.
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