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Seeing farther than my eyes can look

Seeing farther than my eyes can look



Independence Message from the Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies – on the 29th Anniversary of IndependenceOctober 27th, 2008

Ted Engstrom, the former president of World Vision, told a story of a little girl who went on a cruise ship with her father. It was a beautiful clear day as they were standing on deck. The little girl, standing on tiptoe, said to her father: “I can’t see anything.” The father picked her up and put her on his shoulders, so that she was higher than everyone else on the deck and was able to see everything around her.{{more}} “Daddy!” she exclaimed. “I can see farther than my eyes can look!”

The little girl’s statement captures, at this our 29th Anniversary of National Independence, the essence of vision: The key to unlocking the gates of what was and what is, to propelling us into the land of what could be and has not yet been.

The wise King Solomon states: “Where there is no vision, the people perish” (Proverbs 29: 18 KJV). These words capsule the significant role vision plays in our individual, corporate and national lives. The statement implies that where there is revelation of the future, people throw off self-control, personal discipline and restraint. In a nutshell, vision is the source of personal and corporate discipline.

What we see as a nation is what can be. With clear vision of what we can become as a nation, no ocean of difficulty will be too great to cross. Without it, we rarely can move beyond our current boundaries.

Look behind you: What have you learned? What can we learn from the struggles and bravery of our founding fathers? What are the values that have guided and made us strong? What beliefs, practices and values do we retain, refine or reject? It is said that those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it.

Look around you: What is happening to others? The prevailing conditions in our twenty-first century world around us are enough to produce fear, hopelessness, uncertainty and insecurity. The threat of economic collapse, social disintegration, moral decay, religious conflict, political instability and global health epidemics demand leadership that can see beyond the now into a preferred future and has the courage to inspire us to go there. May we profit from the mistakes of others while emulating their strengths.

Look above you: What does God expect of us? Our belief in the Supreme God is enshrined in our constitution and captured in our National Anthem: “What e’re the future brings, our faith will see us through”. In the words of David: “Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord” (Psalm 33:12). Solomon adds: “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed” (Proverbs 16:3) Apart from God, our ultimate source, we cannot as a nation release our full potential. We must know God if we want to experience a satisfying, abundant life.

Vision is the produce of God working in us. He creates the vision and we receive it; it becomes a rallying point, a goal toward which we move his people. The prayer of Bob Pierce, founder of World Vision, is apt: “Let my heart be broken with the things that break the heart of God.”

On the 29th Anniversary of Independence, the Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies urges all Vincentians to look around them to see what needs exist, to reflect on what is observed until a sense of call begins to emerge and then begin to act on that vision.

The Pentecostal Assemblies of the West Indies, St. Vincent and the Grenadines District, once again salutes the nation on our 29th Birthday.