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What You Can Learn From Paul About Obeying Your Vision

“’I will rescue you from your own people and from the Gentiles. I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’

“So then, King Agrippa, I was not disobedient to the vision from heaven. First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and then to the Gentiles, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and demonstrate their repentance by their deeds…” (Acts 26: 17-20).

Paul’s obedience to his vision was in full display even during the above audience with King Agrippa; Paul’s life was laser-focused on persuading everyone to accept and follow Jesus Christ. None other than the king himself bears witness to Paul’s single-minded pursuit of his vision:

“Then Agrippa said to Paul, ‘Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?’

“Paul replied, ‘Short time or long—I pray to God that not only you but all who are listening to me today [including those, who are plotting to kill me] may become what I am, except for these chains’ (Acts 26:28-29).

It appears, nothing can sway Paul from obeying his vision. Paul’s words, his demeanor and attitude proclaim loudly and clearly, “it is a privilege and honor for me to obey my vision, yesterday, today and tomorrow—it makes no difference whether I am a prisoner in chains, or not.”

I agree, it is rather uncommon to say, “Obey your vision.” But, clearly, Paul, an acknowledged leader, obeyed his vision; what about you?

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Paul Swamidass, Ph.D. is Professor Emeritus, Harbert College of Business, Auburn University, Auburn, AL, USA. INTEREST: Leadership training for leaders of Christian organizations. He has published some articles on Christian leadership and contributed to some Christian-leadership training in India in partnership with The Kerusso Institute for Global Leaders. He and his wife Nimmi live in Auburn, AL, where they have worshiped at the Lakeview Baptist Church since 1992.