Sanders: Vision helps us know where we’re going

Published 10:31 pm Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Vision is powerful. Vision helps us to know where we are going. Vision helps us to understand where we are coming from. Vision helps us know that it is not what we are going through but what we are going to.

Where there is no vision, the people perish. These words are found in Proverbs 29:18 of the King James Bible. Without a vision, the people perish because they do not know where they are going.

To illustrate these powers of vision, let’s explore the example of people escaping from slavery. They usually traveled at night. Most people perceived that they traveled at night to avoid detection.

And there may be some truth in this perception; however, vision was the main reason those escaping slavery traveled at night. Their vision was freedom, and freedom lay in the North. The guide to freedom was the North Star.

People escaping from slavery knew that to reach freedom, they had to keep moving toward the north.  However, without a vision they could not know the direction in which they needed to travel.

The North Star became a guiding vision, but they could not see the North Star during the day. They could only see it at night. Vision guides us through the darkness in our lives. The darker the night, the brighter the vision.

Thousands of people escaping from slavery started from many different locations yet they all moved in the same direction because of the vision of freedom symbolized by the North Star.

When people escaping from slavery were chased by slave catchers and had to run in all directions for safety, they could always get back on track to freedom by just following the North Star.

When people escaping from slavery came to rivers or swamps that blocked their path and they had to go in various directions to get over or around the obstacles, they could always get back on track to freedom by following the vision symbolized by of the North Star.

Because of the North Star, those escaping from slavery always knew the right direction to go. There is great security in knowing that we are going in the right direction. In addition to direction, vision provides security. Escaping from slavery was fraught with danger. Just knowing that they were going in this right direction increased their sense of security.

They had to keep moving north. They had to avoid being caught. They had to work together to protect and support one another. They did not perish because they had a vision.

The vision of freedom helped those escaping from slavery to endure hard times. They had to walk great distances.

They had to travel at night. Sometimes they did not have food to eat or water to drink. They had to brave the ever present threats of other human beings trying to return them to slavery. They had to brave poisonous snakes and dangerous wild animals in the forest. But they could keep going because no matter how great the hardships, they knew that it was not what they were going through but the freedom they were going to.

If the people escaping slavery did not have a vision, they would certainly have perished. The vision kept them hopeful.

Legal slavery ended 152 years ago, but vision is no less critical in these perilous times. Therefore, I am bound to ask: “What is our vision in these times?  Do we have a vision that keeps us moving in the right direction? These are questions that each of us must answer.

However, the vision must be for a people, not just an individual. If we don’t have such a vision, the people will surely perish. Vision is really, really powerful. But lack of vision is also powerful because it causes us to perish.

Vision is very invisible in our daily lives in spite of its great power.

So many of us do not realize that we are without a vision. We do realize that we may be perishing, but we do not understand that it is because we are without a vision.