Do You Have A Vision?

by : Craig Binkley

Here’s one of the most important questions you’ll ever be asked (that is, If you’re a dad, or you ever plan to be): Do you have a vision for your family?

Now I know the answer for many of you will be a resounding, “Yes!". I think at some point all of us most likely plan, in some way, for our family’s future.

What I am asking, however, is this:

“Do you have a MULTI-GENERATIONAL vision for your family?"

Now that throws a different light on the question, huh?

Allow me to define what I mean by “multi-generational". The first part of the word is “multi", which is derived from “multiple", meaning to consist of more than one part. Next we have the word “generational". This is a form of the word “generation", which is the relationship of a child to his parents (i.e. a son is the first generation of his father, while a grandson is the second generation and so on). So when I ask if you have a “multi-generational vision", I am in effect asking if you possess a vision for your children, their children, and their children’s children.

Many people will have stopped reading this article at this point, possibly because they feel that their great grandchildren (they may not have even been born yet) have nothing to do with how they live their own life now. I beg to differ—and hope you will continue reading. If you have chosen to read on, I applaud your tenacity as well as your ability to see things in various degrees of light. Your “game plan" for today and beyond definitely DOES affect more than just you ---and much more than just your generation.

I would like to take a moment to share the various aspects of the multi-generational vision I have, with the hope that you’ll consider devising one for yourself. It goes like this: I strongly desire to see my children succeed me in their lives. I tell them that this is not only my desire for them, but also for their children, and their children’s children, and so on. I pray that my sons will then go on to have the same vision for their future families. (What a glorious day it will be to sit in the same room with three or four generations of my family, all with the same multi-generational faithfulness!) When I teach my children a new task, or read out loud, or just generally spend time doing something of importance with them, I share how this can be “passed on" to their kids. I explain how our faith in God is vital for all aspects of our lives, and how to keep that faith alive in our family. They understand that they are important to me, so they listen when I share with them my vision for each of the generations to come.

This may sound like a lot for a child to absorb, but it really isn’t. They get it. If you don’t already have this sort of vision for your children, especially your sons, I urge you to consider devising one...then immediately put it into practice. It’s really quite simple. Let’s get started!

To have a multi-generational vision, there must be a few, essential things in place.

  1. You must already have—or plan to have—children, because without them there is no generation to follow in your footsteps. (This is a given, wouldn’t you agree?)

  2. You must teach your children the vision, lest it die.

  3. You should have a true desire to see your children and your grandchildren supercede your level of “success". I am not just talking financially, but as a child of God.

  4. You must have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. We must place our trust in Him if we are ever to expect our vision to become reality. Plain & simple.

Now I’ll briefly expand on the list above.

Item #1 is a no brainer.

It is impossible to have a multi-generational vision without children being involved. Unfortunately, many people today consider children a “burden", instead of what they truly are: blessings! Personally, I consider debt to be a burden, don’t you? But many people have it backwards. In fact, those same people will go so far as to reject blessings (children), but APPLY for curses (debt). Psalm 127:4-5 states “As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are the children of thy youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate." Wow! Picture that!

Item #2 is very important. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 states: “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." Tip: In other words, they need to spend time with you learning the various multi-generational tasks and beliefs. Teach them of those who came before them in history who kept the faith. (Hebrews Chapter 11 is a great place to start.)

I believe that #3 and #4 go hand in hand. By having a personal relationship with Jesus and seeking His will for our lives, I truly believe this desire to see the future generations succeed us will come.

There are many organizations and ministries that offer wonderful resources on this life-changing topic. My favorite (and the one that I recommend every parent or future parent check out) is Vision Forum Ministries -

Doug Phillips, the founder of Vision Forum, is a leader in the field of providing the timely tools men need today to train their children, so that they might have a multi generational vision for their families.

To sum up: seek God’s will for your life.

Create a vision for your family. It won’t be the easiest road you’ve ever traveled down, but the rewards will be far-reaching!

I will close with this quote from Matthew 7:14:

“Because strait is the gate and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it."

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