Vàclav Havel once stated that “Vision is not enough, it must be combined with venture. It is not enough to stare up the steps. We must step up the stairs”.

As I watch the news, I see the faces of this nation-some engulfed in devastation, and some blinded by greed. The so called leaders of this country offer tax breaks to billionaires while arresting the homeless. When young black children die on the street, there is little said and protests are met with opposition.Our youth chant asking for gun reform, our women for equal pay, our people for affordable healthcare, yet there are those with the authority to fix things still unwilling to move. Still unwilling to step up the stairs. Sound bites play of them explaining plans that never seem to be implemented. They run their campaigns on a platform of unfulfilled promises. In envisioning the future exceptionally we must realize that, as my pastor has said countless times, positions do not make people. People make positions. So with that being said, who are our leaders? Are they the ones elected to office or those who do the electing? Which of these truly determines how exceptional our future is? And if a leader isn’t working for the good of those being led, is he truly a leader at all or just a person with a title? As John Maxwell states, a great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion not the position.

1 Corinthians 12:7 (NLT) “A spiritual gift is given to each of us so we can help each other” – therefore being given this manifestation, would one not say that it is the duty of himself to invest in the benefit of his neighbor? To assist his sister? His brother? To secure the future of the next generation so that it may be… exceptional? Would one not argue that it is his duty when leading, to not only see but to carry out the vision which has been placed on his heart? For some, to turn campaign promises and for others, plans- into reality.

For to envision the future exceptionally is simply not enough. A vision requires execution. It requires action. It requires not only a desire to want to better your surroundings, but the courage to do so. It requires a people willing to use their gifts explained in Corinthians for a universal purpose. A purpose that will in turn guarantee a future better than the present. A future where equity is not just a dream seen from the mountain top, it is a reality able to be touched with bare hands and felt with beating hearts. As we lead, we must provide and equip those following with the tools in order to improve the inevitable. We must be willing to combine their voices with a vision. To consider their condition into our concept. For the bible tells us that faith without works is dead, therefore to envision and not execute is purposeless. To envision is not enough. As we lead, we must step up the stairs. We must lead with a willingness to fulfill promises. A willingness to execute what we have envisioned. A willingness to not only dream but to do- and if we do this, I see a future that is bright. One that enables men, women, and children to live exceptionally. As we lead, we must not do it for fortune, for fame. We must not do it for recognition of our own name. We must do it because a manifestation has been given to each of us for the common good. We must lead acknowledging that we have been given a vision of an exceptional future, and we must lead in order to fulfill that purpose. We must lead knowing that to envision is not enough, knowing that we must not stare up the steps. We must step up the stairs.

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