Jesus consistently cast an energizing vision of God’s coming kingdom. His vision was so compelling that his disciples left everything to follow him. In this passage, Jesus tells the disciples that his vision would demand his own total commitment to it. His description was so graphic that Peter rebuked him. But Jesus knew he had to risk his disciples’ rejection of the vision by telling them what it would cost to achieve it. Any leader who paints the goal without painting the path to that goal is in danger of failing to realize the vision.

John Ryan, president of Center for Creative Leadership, writes, “leadership success always starts with vision.” He then adds, “Compelling visions can change the world. But staying invested in them can be extremely difficult when hard times arrive.”

Great leaders, says Ryan, cast visions that “can be—and in fact should be—challenging to put into action. They realize them only by setting realistic, demanding goals and then going after them relentlessly.” And then he adds this key statement, “Indeed, when it comes to living out a vision, persistence matters just as much as inspiration.”

Jesus painted a compelling vision, but he never pulled any punches when warning his followers that there would be prices to pay. Leaders owe followers an honest and complete picture when they paint a glorious future. To promote the prize and hide the price is not only unfair; it is a strong invitation for people to jump ship in the first storm.

“Leadership Success Always Starts With Vision.”

Mark 8:31 And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”


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