Lack of vision?

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 19, 2005

Is it possible that ones’ future can be hindered for a lack of vision?

Can you imagine what this country would be like without contributions from the likes of those who framed the United States Constitution, those who engineered the transcontinental railroad, the space shuttle or even the computer?

Where would we be had it not been for the vision of the many individuals who refused to be limited by the parameters of an imaginary box?

Ever since I was old enough to vibrate the panels of my vocal chords, I knew I wanted to sing; yet despite the evidence of my ability and unquenchable passion to pursue it, my vision always took a back seat to what was reasonable and practical and could pay the bills.

Like a broken record, I can still hear the voice of my mother telling me, &uot;You need to have something to fall back on.&uot;

Oh, ye of little faith, I used to think to myself. Yet it’s amazing how much that kind of discouragement can kill a dream if you let it.

Have you ever wondered why the government has sought the input of high school and college-age students in its quest to develop certain technologies?

They know the vision of youth is not tainted by pessimism.

Though an idea may seem na¨ve to the minds of those trained to think in terms of the realistic and the practical, they know that those who believe in achieving the impossible often do. And so it is with any endeavor.

Over the past month, I have had the privilege of interviewing a remarkable group of people for our Crossroads and Pride editions, only to come away more inspired than I thought possible.

From the personal triumphs of a once illiterate slave turned preacher and hymnologist to the miraculous recovery of a local man whose life was forever changed by a motorcycle accident that nearly rendered him paralyzed and almost dead, I have witnessed the powerful effects of vision that defies reason.

Ironically, despite the seemingly incessant assignments and grueling hours behind the computer screen, I have come away from the experience with a greater sense of purpose than I have had in a long time.

Each of the stories testifies to the truth that nothing worth anything comes without hard work and sacrifice. Just as faith without works is dead, so is vision without follow through.

For me, vision has never been in short supply, but I do confess there have been times when I lacked the follow through to complete the task for fear of failure.

How sad to think what this world would be like if everyone had that fatalistic philosophy. There’s nothing wrong with having our feet firmly planted in the possibility of failure, but when we don’t even put the effort into trying, failure isn’t just a possibility, it’s a certainty.

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of living inside the box. The sky is too high, the sea too wide, freedom too sweet and life too short.