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It’s Just Your Imagination

by | Sep 9, 2019 | Mod 9 - Embracing Adventure, Relationships with God | 0 comments

I was working out the other day, well into a sweaty ride on the stationary bike, and “It’s Just My Imagination (Runnin’ Away with Me)” by the Temptations came on overhead. Captive and bored, I focused on the lyrics. The man is in love, the girl of his dreams. He visualizes what it could be like; home in the country, kids, the whole nine yards…only to realize he’s just imagining. Then it comes…”Don’t ever let another take her love from me or I would surely die”. In other words, “What if I’m not good enough to win her?” His fear enters into the vision…the song leaves us hanging.

The powerful “What if’s” have a way of destroying the beautiful creation of our imagination.

If you think about it, our imaginations have two sides. One visualizes what could be, the other twists the vision back on itself and thrusts our fears through its heart. Dead. How many dreams have fallen to the projection of unwarranted fear? The failure to envision a future with God in it.

Our imagination is a powerful tool. We need it to encourage ourselves to move in a new direction. Think of vision boards so many motivational coaches encourage. There is value and power in visioning. I remember an experiment we did in High School. The teacher gave us two coat hanger wires bent identically to look like “L’s”. We were to hold the short ends in our hands with the longer facing out in front of us. He said, “Hold you hands steady so that the wires are parallel.” We did that easily. Then he said, “While holding your hands perfectly still, no movement at all, imagine the two wires crossing at the tips.” Within seconds, as hard as we resisted movement physically, the wire tips crossed. Happened to everyone…no fluke! The power of vision was etched into my brain from then on. We need the “positive” side of vision.

What about the “negative” side, do we need that? Short answer, yes! Think of all of the crazy ideas that you’ve had that you’re glad you never pursued. Fear imagined keeps us from making stupid mistakes. Oh, we definitely need this “not really so negative” side. But what happens when it pierces the heart of a really good idea? Even an idea God has for our life? We don’t want that to happen. How do we prevent this?

Like a sharp knife that can be used to slice vegetables or slice our finger, we need to respect our imagination and learn to use it properly. It doesn’t take much more than a quick look at a nature show to know that God has an incredible imagination. Made in his likeness, he has passed it along to us. So good! In fact, the Bible even instructs us on some prudent ways to manage our imagination.

“But don’t begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it? 29 Otherwise, you might complete only the foundation before running out of money, and then everyone would laugh at you. 30 They would say, ‘There’s the person who started that building and couldn’t afford to finish it!’ Luke 14:28-30 (NLT)

We need to take steps to flush out some details, “counting the cost”, before plunging ahead into our vision. Make a logical plan, keeping emotions in check. In other words, don’t plunge ahead without first thinking it through in detail. If planning is not your strong suite, find someone to help. I know after years of being a financial advisor, many people need help. It’s often money concerns that fuel the negative imagination as a matter of fact. I’ve helped many people overcome financial hurdles so they could venture ahead with their vision. Amazing what a plan, some creativity and a great God can do.

By the same token, many an idea was not pursued due to over planning. The writer of Ecclesiastes addresses those who fear change.

If you wait for perfect conditions, you will never get anything done.” Ecclesiastes 13:4 (NLT)

If this speaks to you, find someone to encourage you or you will never move. I used to be like this. I sometimes think about what adventures I missed. I don’t dwell on these thoughts, but use them as motivation to move ahead now. There is no perfect time and time is of the essence. Who knows how long we have here?

As you imagine the adventure of your life, planning and encouragement are very important components to you prepare for your journey. Tap into those around you for help, but be careful. Others can easily project their fears and imagination into your vision. Seek someone, like a good coach, who knows God, is for you, and fully supportive. Avoid people who will simply tell you what they think you should do.

There is one more and perhaps the most important piece. I have seen far too often, people’s incredible God sized ideas die shortly after birth. “How could I ever do that? I don’t know how. I don’t have the money. I have too many responsibilities and obligations.” Like the song says, “Just my imagination, runnin’ away with me.”  Your imagination can quickly get out of control to the detriment of your life and God’s plan for you. We can’t let the adventures of our lives be quashed. What to do?

Shut down the “What if’s?” by replacing them with “But what if’s…?”

When we hear the “What ifs?” coming, immediately replace them with “But what if that was not the case, then what would it look like?” Let the powerful vision form and pray to God for creativity and possibility. If the vision hangs and excites you, the next step is to explore it by poking around, learning, exploring, making connections. By walking in the direction of your vision you will gain more information and experience. You will see the possibilities and already be in motion. This is the time to work with someone to make a plan to move into your adventure. Watch those “What ifs” fade into the sunset. You’re on your way!

It’s time to put your imagination to work envisioning the adventure God made you for. The Mission Curve™ process leads you step by step from forming and protecting your vision to planning for success.

Go to www.bobblackcoaching.com to schedule a free consultation.

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