Surface level vision creates surface level results. I stare at that quote every day at my desk at work. Written on a sticky note, stuck to a picture of our dream home, it reminds me of what I’m trying to build with my life.
Setting goals is great. Having incentives is absolutely necessary. But more than goals and carrots on a stick, a big-picture vision of who you’re becoming will ultimately steer your life and the way you live.
I was encouraged recently to respond to several writing prompts to really clarify my own vision. They ranged from picturing my retirement party, to my 50th anniversary, to my parents’ death bed, to my own death bed...
The point was to draw out those deep desires that live within us, to identify what’s most important, to figure out what drives us and to utilize that drive to propel us forward into personal growth and achievement.
My parents celebrated their 34th wedding anniversary this past weekend, so in light of their commitment to one another and the example they’ve been, I want to share my own response to the 50th anniversary prompt.
This is what I hope Lacie will be able to sincerely say about me when we are in our mid-70s together...
I have felt loved by you every single day of our marriage. I never harbored doubt or insecurity about your commitment to me. Even now in our old age, I have never been more satisfied and full of joy than I am today.
Thank you for choosing to work through the hard times, for better and worse. Thank you for deciding what was most important and never wavering. You were not perfect, but you never failed to admit your mistakes and grow from them.
You have loved me more than you’ve loved yourself in every circumstance, and I see and feel the love of God through your life and the way you’ve served me and others. It has truly been a privilege to be your lifelong partner.
Life is merely a breath, a fleeting moment, yet still wildly important. I’m not that husband I want to be yet, but I know I’m becoming it every day. The same is true for every other aspect of who I’m becoming—not yet, but one day, because I know where I’m aiming.
How clear is your picture? Are you a “meaningful specific” or a “wandering generality”? Are you consciously making the decision to pursue growth and progress or subconsciously choosing the path of least resistance?