I am sitting in a parking lot, as I just had to pullover in order to unload my brain and spirit after a morning with two former mentees, now both become mentors!
My first two hours were in a coffee shop conversation with one of my 50-year-old Cabin Talk veterans. Currently the Dean in a nationally recognized higher education institution. He and I have very similar religious backgrounds and understand each other's language, as well as holding a similar spiritual bent!
The other, a very successful business man whom I met in my early planning board days. He now has a life layered with success, amazing stories of spiritual victories, followed by a truly global social impact.
On the way to the initial coffee appointment, my eye caught this amazingly brilliant red-leafed maple tree that had long been standing along the edge of an often traveled interstate highway. It was there all the time, just masked by the chlorophyll still functioning from late Summer.
During my late 60's era undergratuate studies in Biology, I learned that leaves have three types of pigments: chlorophylls, carotenoids, and anthocyanins. During the summer, chlorophyll is so abundant that it masks the other pigments. As the daylight shortens, the tree produces less chlorophyll, allowing other pigments to become visible. These pigments include:
-Carotenes: Yellow, orange, red, or brown in color
-Anthocyanins: Pink, red, or purple in color
-Other pigments, all developed in response to changing weather and day length.
My God, two things suddenly dawned on me during my morning commute! One, just how close to winter I am at 75, and number two, the brilliance of vision so long hidden, colored over by this last season of service, yet it's still alive in me.
I could hardly wait to share with my friends, though they have come to anticipate an almost manic excitement each time we meet. The reality is that I can often hardly wait to hear what God seems always doing in their own lives as well, both vibrant visionaries! We likely feed off each other, as often in the moment we realize the renewal of relational and spiritual alignment within our lives. That's true treasure!
Vision is what true living is all about, not only in me and those I hang with, but in all people willing to allow for its seasonal display. Yes, it has been there all the time! Now, I'm no longer just talking leaf color, but rather your dreams, some birthed in your mother's womb, when if pursued through all life's seasons, have transformational capacity!
Dreams pursued, yet unfulfilled are simply awaiting their season, their Sovereign timing. Masked by the pigmentation of the present.
I was so pumped by my morning conversation, yet aware of my dear friend's schedule. As it always seems, we cut short our delightful and quite spiritual conversation (what I call "knee-less prayer), though we both felt God was up to something between us! Maybe later on that?
I still had my 11:30 lunch with the one who now impacts nations, but needed to kill some time, so I decided to cut through the transitional neighborhood in which I had been involved some two decades ago.
I rode by the large warehouse facility that a partner and I "spoke vision into," when owned by a missionary's widow, the property at that time in disrepair. The dirt under that complex is now serving the community by way of Goodwill Industries.
Then I drove by an old mill, built in 1880's by early Moravians, whose owner, then near retirement had come to know us by way of the Family Resouce Center launched just down the way. Another friend, a former county commissioner, who had been raised nearby helped speak vision into the owner's heart, a vision of the day when an educational facility could bring new life and opportunities to this transitional area in our city.
Our idea had been for a private but affordable high school on that mill property. Though somewhat different than our original vision, as was the case with the Goodwill site, a school nonetheless is on the grounds today, and quite impressive in its growth and impact.
Vision tends to display itself differently as time passes, initially even hindered by our religious and denominational boxes, though that too perhaps only providential pigmentation, awaiting its day and season, though there all the time. Simply awaiting it time!!
By the time I left my 11:30 today, and after hearing even deeper alignment and possibilities around concepts discussed over the years, well, I just needed to pull over in the parking lot and write in order to be safe for others, given my excitement!