The Lyme Life -Losing my Vision
Some people are sure to get tired of me talking or writing about the Lyme life. It is amazing though, how specific symptoms associated with Lyme are actually just a concentrated example of issues that happen in anyone’s life.
My vision has been failing for a few years, but it’s not a steady decline. It’s more up and down. Some days I can see clear enough to drive in daylight. On other days, I wouldn’t drive at all. It’s not just that my vision is blurred or darkened. I have a form of ocular neuropathy. The things I look at tremor or jump around slightly. This happens with photophobia, which is painful light sensitivity. It happens to a lot of people who get migraines. It’s not sudden either. So, I can be confident of whether or not I am safe to get behind the wheel.
For thinking people, in leadership of any kind, vision is everything. Having a vision for what the purpose of a task or project is and keeping that vision in sight is key to accomplishing it. Being able to cast a vision is also important. If we cannot describe the vision clearly enough for others to catch it, their participation will jump around and likely falter, especially if there is any difficulty involved.
Vision sets the stage for what the future of an organization looks like. It projects the goals in a way that can be identified. Vision clarifies the state of what’s ahead for all of us.
Without vision people perish. Proverbs 28:19 says Where there is no revelation, people cast off restraint; but blessed is the one who heeds wisdom’s instruction.
When a person has a vision to go to college and become a doctor, but their vision falters, they may make choices that derail their plans. He may skip classes, binge drink and party, or just change courses. If they have a strong vision, they will do the things that it takes without wavering to make the dream come true.
So, how do we know that we are heeding wisdom’s instruction?
I think that it the same way that I evaluate whether or not I am safe to drive or if I will be able to tolerate a trip to a store or even go for a walk with the dog.
Build a foundation. We are supposed to be thinking beings. We are spirit, we have a soul: our mind, will, and emotions, and we live in a body. Our spirit knows things on a subconscious level about God and moral law, but since we begin life separated from God because of sin, it doesn’t come into our consciousness automatically. It is by our soul that we decide to acquire the knowledge of God and His ways.
- We use our minds to read and listen to the Word of God.
- We use our will to keep that Word in our consciousness by meditating on purpose.
- We use our emotions to help store the memory of the Scriptures.
Draw it out. Find a quiet place to think deeply about the future. Write down what you’d like to see there. Whether it is for yourself or your family or a business or ministry, picture next year. Then, picture five years or ten. Think about the things that would have to happen for things to become the way you’ve envisioned them. Of course, we don’t know what we don’t know, but we can spend time drawing out what we do know.
- Schedule time to think.
- Put away distractions.
- Ask God for wisdom.
Cast the vision. Be careful here. Don’t tell everyone. Only a few will be able to see what you see. Involve people on a need to know basis. You don’t want to be derailed before you begin. Some people will get a fuzzy sense of what you want to do and go with you. Others will find it too unclear and get nervous. If and whenever possible, share the parts that those affected need to know at the time.
So, if you have a vision for a new project or category of retail for your business, you don’t need everyone on board. You need those people who will be selling or presenting to have a clear understanding of what that looks like. You probably don’t need to tell the whole team.
- Be selective about who you tell.
- Let people in on the parts that affect them.
- Pay attention to timing and what’s going on in their lives too.
Make it Clear. A blurry vision will be hard to focus on. If it jumps around, like tremors, you won’t be able to keep it firmly in your sight. For your own sake, write it out with as much detail as possible and revise it as you go along. For a vision that can be accomplished in a short amount of time, you might not have too many revisions. Things will come up that will disrupt a major shift in your life. Carefully paying attention to your trajectory along the way will really help.
- Write down expected milestones.
- Make changes and additions as needed.
- Be patient, but keep going.
These are the things I have to do with my natural vision too. Carefully evaluating all of the aspects involved in dealing with ocular neuropathy has given me a keen sense of how fragile life is. It has also helped me delve into how I manage life and still add value to other people.
What hardships have you encountered and how have they helped you to become a more thoughtful person?