Several years ago I heard a message where the speaker was explaining vision like that of a windshield of a car. He said, “you should always be looking ahead and not worry about the past; it’s like driving a car, you have a huge windshield in front of you and a small rear view mirror to glance at.”
While I certainly understood what he was saying, I’ll never forget thinking, “yeah but there are also two side mirrors.”
While driving home from another fruitful trip where I met with church leadership and discussed vision, I noticed those words I’ve seen a million times on the mirror, “objects in mirror are closer than they appear” and had a bit of revelation concerning vision on what I’ll call “the three mirrors” when it comes to looking ahead at the road in front of you.
Mirror one is called, “Others.” When moving forward it’s important to keep others in mind. There are some that need to be looked at with the understanding that they probably won’t make it with you the next leg of the journey and some that will need help getting to where you want to take them. Others is a huge aspect to keep in mind because it’s been best said, “if you think you’re leading and look behind you to see others aren’t following then you’re just taking a walk.” Be mindful to make sure others are following as well as what others are refusing to follow.
Mirror two is called, “You.” Whenever I look in my rearview mirror to see what’s behind me I also catch a glimpse of myself. I think it’s the unspoken truth we must continue to focus on and develop our character as we are leading others into the future of where God is directing. I’ve see too many times leaders become not worth following because their integrity eroded over the course of time while trying to save the world.
Mirror three is called, “History.” How my tenth grade history teacher would proclaim, “you need to know your history because it has a way of repeating itself!” I certainly don’t believe a bad history means a bad future, no, God is bigger than that. However, knowing the history of a group or organization will give understanding why some ideas are tough to get through to people and why others won’t buy in to your vision. Knowing the history is very important, so ask questions. Asking tough questions now will help avoid tough times later.
Hope this makes sense and you’re encouraged to continue to lead where you’re at!