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The Power of Vision:

Recognizing God’s Call

by Ericka D. Jackson
©2007 by Ericka D. Jackson.
All rights reserved. Printed in The United States of
America. No part of this publication may be reproduced,
stored in any retrieval system or transmitted in any
form or by electronic, mechanical, photocopying,
recording or otherwise without the written permission of
the publisher except the case of brief quotations
embodied in critical articles and reviews.
TABLE OF CONTENTS

Recognizing God’s Voice.................................................. 13


Dedication I Hear A Lot Of People Talking About Vision,
What Is The Big Deal?...................................................... 17
What Exactly Is Vision? .................................................... 21
This book is dedicated to my mother, Thelma, who What Are The Components Of Living My Vision? ........... 26
has supported me every step of the way. When I Purpose............................................................................. 27
Desires Of Your Heart ...................................................... 29
looked crazy to the rest of the world for following Passion ............................................................................. 30
God’s calling on my life, she supported me Gifts And Talents .............................................................. 32
Area Of Service................................................................. 34
emotionally, financially and spiritually. Thank you for Calling ............................................................................... 38
all of the cards over the years that came just when I What Are The Differences Between Dreams,
Purpose, Calling, Passion And Vision?............................ 40
was getting weary on this journey. Thank you for How Do I Know God’s Specific Vision For Me?
your unconditional support and encouragement. It Will What I Want Be Different From What God
Wants For My Life? .......................................................... 46
really means the world to me and I look forward to What Happens If I Don’t Respond To God’s Calling?..... 50
demonstrating my thankfulness for years to come. Where Do I Begin In Living My Vision?............................ 54
How Do I Stay Motivated As I Am Working On My
Vision? .............................................................................. 58
How Long Will It Take To Bring Forth My Vision? ........... 60
How Do I Handle My Fears About Stepping Out
And Living My Vision? ..................................................... 62
Bonus Question: Is There Enough “Vision” To
Go Around For Everyone? ................................................ 64
I Am Here For You… ......................................................... 67
Other Books By Ericka D. Jackson .................................. 68
About The Author ............................................................. 69
You Hold The Power ......................................................... 71

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committing to living God’s vision. It is time to urgently
INTRODUCTION respond to God’s calling on your life. Now is your time.
Today is your day. It’s time to harness and activate The
Power of Vision.

God created you for a very specific purpose


and vision.

There is a sense of urgency for you to bring


forth your vision. God has called you to make a
Have you ever had one of those days where you
difference in the lives of particular people who can only
just feel off? You are standing in the bathroom in your
receive and act on the message and information they
paisley pajamas, blankly staring into the mirror just
need to hear from you. God has a specific purpose for
waiting to receive some divine guidance to know exactly
your life. Your particular life’s journey has happened so
what you should be doing with your life? You may not
you can be a living testimony in their lives. The longer
know what it is, but you know it’s got to be better than
you put off bringing forth your vision, the longer those
this! Living without knowing your vision feels like an
lives suffer, because you have the information, insights,
eternity of “one of those days.” Now, more than ever,
process, support, testimony or product that will bring
you must slow down and take the time to know your
them out of their situation and free them up to live
specific vision and what you were born to do.
God’s vision.
This morning I was listening to the gospel
This is the continuum of Vision and it is a chain
station here in Raleigh and they played one of the last
that should not be broken. Unlike those chain emails
songs the late, great Gerald Levert recorded shortly
that you get twice a week in your inbox, which claim to
before his passing. The song was called, He Never Left
wreak havoc in your life or the lives of others if you do
Me and a portion of the chorus line of the song struck
not forward them, the Vision chain is about everyone
me very deeply. It was, “I did not heed the call.” This
doing what it is God called them to do when God has
line reminded me of the incredible importance of
called them to do it. As a result, your vision intertwines
heeding or answering God’s call in your life and

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with mine and mine connects with others and our all of the world’s problems, but they are not listening.
visions propel each other’s forward. Your job is to assist and to guide them in being
obedient to my call.” All-right-tee then! Wow! I sat there
Your vision assignment does not come all at
for several more minutes taking in what I had just
once; God slowly unfolds and reveals it to you
with each faithful step you take. heard.

Although I was moving forward on the pieces of With that clarity, I began to clearly understand

what God called me to do as a speaker and success my specific purpose and how to achieve God’s Vision

coach, the fullness of God’s vision for my life was for my life. My entire business took on a whole new

revealed to me as I was sitting at my desk one morning meaning and depth. As I connected with others, I was

about four years ago doing internet research on the crystal clear that I was fully on God’s path for my life. I

speaking and coaching industries. I found websites for knew I was being obedient and responding to God’s

many coaches and even more speakers. Each coaching call. It is the most amazing feeling in the world (yeah,

site was using the same words and phrases – really) and that day I vowed to God that I would spend

“purpose…achieving your goals…living your dreams…” the rest of my days assisting others in living God’s

Each speaker claimed to be the best and described vision for their lives full-time, not part-time as most

their speaking as “inspirational, motivational, and believers do. What would God’s Kingdom look like if His

entertaining…” I remember sitting in my burgundy office saints were living His will and making a wonderful living

chair, desiring to be deeply clear about what sets me while they did it? I call it “Living God’s Vision as Your

apart from these other speakers and coaches. I was Vocation.”

clear about my speaking skill and years of expertise, In the years since that epiphany, I have been

but I needed the big picture. asked so many questions to clarify the truth and I

As always, I asked God for the answer. This was wanted to write this little book so you can fully

one of those wonderful moments in which God understand the nature of God’s Vision for your life. This

responded quickly and clearly. I heard the words, “I is a compilation of the main questions I have received

have put the answers in my children and they are not and answers that will help clarify the incredible power

being obedient. I have given them the solutions to solve of vision and how you can begin to recognize God’s call

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on your life. This will enable you to move forward and
RECOGNIZING GOD’S VOICE
take the necessary steps to bring forth your vision.
Before I delve into the questions about
recognizing all of the aspects of God’s call, I want to
talk briefly about how to begin to train yourself to hear
God’s voice. While God uses many people, feelings and
urgings to communicate with you, the most powerful
communication tool He uses is your voice of the
indwelling Christ. There is a voice within you that acts
as a spiritual compass to guide and direct your every
step. It is imperative that you are in touch with and
learn to distinguish this voice in order to move forward
in your vision.
God created you with a receiver that stays
tuned to His voice. This inner voice is the Holy Spirit.
You may use phrases to describe your indwelling voice
of God such as, “Something tells me…”, “My gut is
telling me…, “I have a hunch…” or “I have a strong
feeling…”. This voice keeps you tuned into the invisible
spiritual world all around you. You may have heard it
referred to as intuition.
While the secular world refers to this spiritual
“ear” as intuition, it moves to a new level once you have
devoted your life to Christ. It is a pure voice that
constantly whispers instruction, direction, wisdom and
knowledge. In order to hear this holy voice within as
clearly as possible, you must actively do several things

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on a regular basis: powerful way.
1. Read and study The Word I am so looking forward to moving you through
2. Spend time in silence as often as possible. In the this process. Congratulations on taking this step and I
course of this quiet time, you will begin to recognize your am honored to be supporting and guiding you on this
inner voice (meditation).
wonderful journey. Let’s get started…
3. Keep your energy clear and positive by taking regular
inventory of yourself. When you find things that are not of
God or The Holy Spirit, confess/admit them and ask for
forgiveness.
4. Learn to be obedient to this indwelling Christ at all
times.
You can always confirm that it is the voice of
God because this voice always leads you toward that
which is good for your spiritual development and away
from those things that are of flesh or of fleshly desires.
This voice always leads you toward the light of God and
away from the darkness of negative spiritual forces. If
you hear an inner voice urging you to do things that
harm your mind, body or spirit or that of others, that
spiritual voice is not The Holy Spirit.
As you read through the following questions and
begin to take steps toward clearly identifying God’s
vision for your life, make sure you are quieting the
“noise” in your life to be able to unmistakably
distinguish God’s voice, like a mother who can
recognize their child’s voice over any other voice. With
practice, you will come to know God’s voice in a

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1
I Hear A Lot Of People
Talking About Vision,
What Is The Big Deal?

This is an interesting question, because so


many people live their lives everyday without thinking
about vision and they appear to do just fine. You can
stay busy 24 hours a day, study The Word, attend
church, manage your family, career and life’s
obligations for the next 50 years and not move God’s
vision for your life forward. This is just existing and
surviving and not tapping into the goodness God has
reserved for you. It is like walking around as an
unfulfilled, empty person that goes through the motions
without ever touching the glory God created you to
experience on a daily basis. Living your vision brings a
deep passion and joy that is yours for the taking when
you focus your time and energy on vision.
Vision is not just a big deal, it is the deal. God’s

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vision for your life is the one thing you were put here to was located outside of the Psych ward and near the
do and it is your sole purpose for living. Vision is the Cancer ward at the Seattle hospital in which I worked.
ultimate picture of what God has shown you to be This meant that everyday I constantly absorbed and felt
possible for your life. Not taking the time to know and the confusion, terror, panic, fear, disillusionment and
act upon the big picture of what you are capable of dis-ease of people coming and going to and from the
being and doing in your lifetime leads to an unfulfilled hospital.
life in which you just exist. This was slowing killing me and it seemed that
When you just exist, you bound around life like no matter how much money I made, it was not nearly
the colorful ball in a pinball machine, just waiting for enough. I was living without the covering of God (I was
the next obstacle to rebound off that sends you in not consistently tithing) and there always seemed to be
another random direction. Think about all of the time a financial crisis to keep at bay. I realized that not living
you may spend in The Word, attending church, doing God’s purpose for my life felt like experiencing a slow,
good deeds, working to get sin underfoot and spiritual death. The scariest thing is that no one around
fellowshipping, but still not functioning within the me knew the depth of my pain. As an event coordinator,
fullness of your purpose. When you pull back the layers, I became masterful at staying calm and collected in the
it’s all about you finding your vision and living it. midst of a crisis. I realized that it was not only a big deal
I really came to understand the depth of the to live God’s vision for my life, it was life or death for me
importance of vision a little more than 6 years ago and my daughter.
when I looked up and felt like my life was wrapping a Vision is also a tremendous deal because as
death grip around my neck and choking any semblance you take a good look at the world, it’s conflicts, clashing
of happiness out of me. My life was suffocating me. I cultures, war, poverty, sin and suffering, it seems to be
was a single mother of a very demanding little girl, falling apart. God has deposited answers within you
struggling to make it to the next paycheck, incredibly that will alleviate a portion of the world’s troubles.
unhappy and feeling unappreciated at my job. What Deep, huh? Your vision is such a big deal because it is
made it even worse is that one of my greatest spiritual imperative that you bring forth the piece that you have
gifts is my ability to feel what others feel and my office been called to do.

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Perhaps you are passionate about ending
hunger and your talents are organization and graphic
design and your gift is helping others do and look their
best. Then it is time for you to find an organization that
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supports hunger causes around your city, state, nation
or world in which you can contribute your gifts and
talents. If you commit to living God’s vision, He will open What Exactly is Vision?
up doors and His divine timing in a way that simply
cannot happen without His favor.
While this seems like a straight forward
Although your life may appear to be just fine,
question, it really isn’t because there are so many
God has more for you. Even if you always look well-
different uses of the word “vision.” While vision can be
dressed, have a great job and drive the latest edition of
a prophetic “seeing” of something that has not yet
a luxury car, God has something for you when you
occurred in the natural world, it is also used to describe
commit to living His purpose which is exponentially
a goal. Vision, as I discuss it, is the ultimate conception
better than anything you can even imagine.
of what God shows you as possible for your life. Vision
God has shown me that all of the world’s
is the big picture of what you were born to do. Vision
problems can be solved when His saints heed His call
chooses you. You cannot choose your vision, it is
on their lives. Can you imagine? I can.
already assigned to you. Your job is to uncover it and
take action on it.
I remember when I began realizing my vision. I
was 12 years old and my sister talked me into running
for class Vice-President. I had to prepare a speech to
deliver in front of the entire 7th grade class. I clearly
remember looking up into the bleachers and seeing the
faces of all of my friends, acquaintances and teachers
and feeling no nervousness at all. I stood at the table-

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top podium and delivered my speech. Although I don’t Whew! That’s deep, isn’t it? It is so different
remember exactly what I said, I vividly remember the from what you may have been taught or have come to
reaction my words received from the crowd. My believe. When you really take a closer look, it is quite
classmates were standing on their feet cheering, freeing. When you are on-point with your vision, your
screaming and letting out piercing whistles. purpose, passion, gifts, talents, preferences and
I stood there dazed for a moment as I fully chosen altitude (calling) all culminate to create the
grasped that their reaction was in response to my most deeply fulfilling life for you and those you have
speech. It was at that moment that I understood that been chosen to serve.
God had given me a gift of speaking and sharing a
message that left people changed. I also realized that I
was most comfortable speaking in front of a crowd –
the more the better. That was the first glimpse of my
vision – God’s largest purpose for my life.
Vision is of God. This process of living to your
full capacity and potential can only be from God.
Contrary to the mantras, “You can do anything you put
your mind to!” and “Shoot for the stars!” that the
motivational speakers of the 1980’s and 1990’s tried
to drill into your head. The truth is you can do anything
God has ordained you to do. All too often we try to
adopt someone else’s calling or purpose because it
looks great, fun and wonderful. Well, that is theirs. God
has something specific that is yours. Which is why it
appears that you have sometimes failed because you
were working on an idea or vision that was not really
intended for you.

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I actually don’t like using the term “dreams.” It
is another throwback to the good ‘ole days of

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motivational speakers that got you dreaming but did
not show you how to actually achieve your dreams. The
other reason I hesitate to talk too much about dreams
is that they are usually rooted in materialism and are in
response to your current circumstances. Dreams
What Are The Components acknowledge the surface or material things you may
Of Living My Vision? want or desire and only begin to scratch the surface of
what you are here to do for others. You’ve been
dreaming, it’s now time to gain the clarity you need to
There is more to vision than meets the eye and
truly manifest your vision.
I’m so glad you asked! More often than not when we
hear about vision, we hear the words; purpose, PURPOSE
dreams, calling, passion and gifts synonymously. It’s The first component of vision is purpose. Your
time to clear this up so you know what I am talking purpose tells you the theme of your life; the reason you
about. There are components to vision and exist. Combined with your passion, your purpose
understanding each one will help clarify your path. explains your method or how you will carry out your
But first, let’s talk about this word “dream” that Kingdom assignment. To uncover your purpose, ask
you have heard so much about and how it fits into yourself, “If money and time were not an issue, what I
vision. While a dream is an important part of the puzzle, would do and If I could make plenty of money any way I
it is just the beginning. Dreams open up your chose, what would I do?” At the end of your life, what
imagination and ability for your mind to “see” what it is do you want to be known for? What do you want your
that you can conceive for your life. Many of us model legacy to be? Perhaps you were born to make a
our dreams afer the lives of others. While dreams open difference by alleviating hunger or helping neglected
the doorway, there are 7 components of vision that are animals. Your purpose gives you a general idea and
through the door that dreams assist you in opening. direction to move, but by itself, it is not the whole

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picture.
DESIRES OF YOUR HEART
What is your purpose? Take some time to stop
The second component of vision is the desires
and write it out on the following lines:
of your heart. What do you really want (both for
_______________________________________________
yourself and others)? The desires of your heart go
_______________________________________________
beyond your surface-level dreams to those things you
_______________________________________________
deeply long for, desire and are willing to work for. It is
_______________________________________________
all too easy to have dreams, but not be willing to work
_______________________________________________
for them. The desires of your heart compel you in a way
_______________________________________________
that won’t let you go. They are those things you envision
for yourself and may or may not share them with others.
You may deeply desire to have a certain kind of
car, to have an incredible love relationship, to be able
to be a tremendous blessing to others, to see your
children do well in life, to help underprivileged children,
to have your dream home, to see people live AIDS-free,
to travel, to play a sport that you love professionally,
etc. What do you really want? Take time to list it out
and be specific. While your list may be similar to your
dream list, it should uncover some other aspects of
your desires.
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________

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_______________________________________________ and fulfill you when you are doing them. When you are
_______________________________________________ operating in your passion, you experience a flow and
_______________________________________________ effortlessness that makes it easy to stay the course.
_______________________________________________ When you are passionate you are excited, inspired,
_______________________________________________ motivated, focused, fulfilled, walking in your greatness
_______________________________________________ you have a sense of feeling complete.
_______________________________________________ God gives you passion so you know your path to
_______________________________________________ bringing your vision forth. In your passion lies the clues
that will keep you going. For instance, while speaking is
Scripture tells you that God will give you the a gift and an anointing for me, my real passion lies in
desires of your heart if you put His Kingdom first. While seeing the lives of those I speak to be transformed –
dreams require nothing in particular to bring forth and not just changed – but never to go back to how it was
may or may not come to pass, desires of your heart before they encountered my work.
require obedience and are part of God’s grace, mercy Perhaps you love seeing those around you
and blessings that He has in store for you. Do you see fulfilled and enjoy the look on their faces after a great
the difference? While it sounds subtle, it’s a major meal you’ve prepared and you want to share this
distinction and understanding. This will help you learn passion with others as you open a new restaurant.
to be and not just do. Yes, you need to be in forward Maybe you are passionate about helping people make
action for desires of your heart to manifest, but it is money through their businesses or hearing the voice of
different from the mantras of hard core persistence, someone in the listening audience when something
striving and undivided focus that you have been taught you’ve said on your radio show improved their life. What
that comes with bringing forth your dreams. do you love doing? What juices you? What makes you
holler with enjoyment when you have just completed it?
PASSION
Your passion tells you the end picture of your purpose.
Okay, enough about desires of your heart. Let’s
It also gives you clues as to how you will apply your
talk about the third component of vision – passion.
purpose. What are you passionate about?
Your passion consists of those things that bring you joy

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_______________________________________________ foot as something unique when is with you continuously
_______________________________________________ and you can do it with little or no effort. What gifts have
_______________________________________________ God bestowed upon you? Talking, shopping,
_______________________________________________ understanding technology, discerning good and bad
_______________________________________________ spirits, writing, exercising, dancing, being organized?
_______________________________________________ Hidden in your gifts are the additional clues you need to
_______________________________________________ understand the methods God has given you to make a
_______________________________________________ difference in your area of purpose.
_______________________________________________ Yet, gifts are only half of this component. The
_______________________________________________ other half of this component is your talent. Your talent
_______________________________________________ consists of those things you are naturally good at, but
_______________________________________________ need to practice developing to perfect. Maybe you show
_______________________________________________ talent in talking and being able to connect with people,
_______________________________________________ but you need to practice interviewing skills to become
really good at the delivery of your gifts. What are you
good at, but need to be great at in order to effectively
GIFTS AND TALENTS
operate in your gifting? Together, your gifts and talents
The next aspects of vision to talk about are your
create an additional dimension to understanding your
gifts and talents. Your gifts are those things that just
specific Kingdom assignment.
come naturally to you and are not actually taught, they
I am a good writer, but in order to be great and
were deposited in you from God. If you did go to school
get across my passion and purpose, I have to practice,
to learn more about them, you probably excelled in
practice, practice, read a lot, and write several drafts
them or you were bored because it came so easily to
before I can capture what I am really trying to say on
you. Gifts are sometimes challenging to identify
paper. With my primary gift being speaking and not
because they are such a part of you. You may find it
writing, I have had to read countless books about
difficult to distinguish them.
writing and have taken many writing classes to improve
They are like trying to see your right arm or your

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my writing. Yet, when I speak, I can develop thoughts audience or group of people you were put here to serve.
coherently in my mind instantaneously and deliver them Another way to think about your area of service is your
with clarity, depth and power the first time with little or special niche. Two months ago as I was reading about
no effort. God having appointed shepherds over their flocks and
The challenge with talent is making sure you how this particular shepherd was lying around the
use it to further your vision and not to get stuck trying to hillside only thinking about himself and his own gain
make a living on your talent alone. While you may be and not taking care of his sheep and they were
good at it, your talent alone does not feed your passion scattered all over the hillside.
and usually does not touch the depth of the desires of I realized a different way to think about my
your heart to keep producing fruit for a lifetime. I hear business in that moment. God created me to shepherd
many stories about people getting stuck making a living a particular flock and my purpose is to gather, inform
from their talent alone and their story usually begins and take care of my flock so they know which direction
with something like this, “I am an accountant and yes, it to go at all times. I am a shepherd and my job is to
pays the bills and I’m good at it, but it’s not what I really gather my flock. I have not been taking care of my flock.
want to do.” I had to stop and ask myself, “Do I know who my flock
You have probably heard stories of actors or is? Do I know what my flock needs?”
singers who tried to live on their talent alone and never This was truly an eye-opening moment because
connected with their other six components of vision. I thought I had clearly identified my target market, yet
They are the ones who were once a hit and now appear God was taking it to a higher level. It even prompted me
on the “Where Are They Now” television series. Your to do a journal entry listing the needs of my flock. It
talent is a way for you to bring forth your purpose. became so wonderfully simple to understand on a
Talent was not meant for you to get too comfortable deeper level that my job is to gather my flock from all
working with only your gifts and talents. There are more over the world and provide them with what they need to
aspects of vision to take into consideration. be successful as Christian entrepreneurs and
visionaries.
AREA OF SERVICE
You are a Shepard. When you are a Shepard,
Your area of service is the particular target

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your sheep recognize and respond to your voice and Mustangs – be very specific)?
call. God has created you to oversee a flock that can _______________________________________________
only hear your voice. Who is your flock? Are they _______________________________________________
scattered all over the hillsides waiting for you to live _______________________________________________
your vision? Are they not being taken care of because _______________________________________________
you are in fear or are they tied up tending to the daily _______________________________________________
obligations that fill your calendar, but are not God’s _______________________________________________
purpose for you? _______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
Who are your sheep? Who were you born to serve? _______________________________________________
What group(s) of people are in your heart? What Once you’ve clearly identified your flock, make a
specific group of people do you want to work with? Take list of what your flock needs. Do they need a one-stop
this space to clearly articulate your flock: shop website that gives them resources to carry out
_______________________________________________ their missions? What topics do they need to know more
_______________________________________________ about? What information do they need to be
_______________________________________________ successful? What products would they purchase? This
_______________________________________________ is what you need to get busy providing for your flock
_______________________________________________ right now, even before you leave your job. Now is your
_______________________________________________ time. It is time for you to urgently bring forth God’s
_______________________________________________ vision for your life and for you to prosper from your good
_______________________________________________ works. Can you feel it? It’s been trying to get your
attention. It’s time to respond bigger and bolder than
What are the characteristics of this group of people you you ever have before...
most enjoy working with (special needs children from What does your flock need?
wealthy families, adults striving to create wealth or _______________________________________________
people with a passion for collecting and restoring Ford _______________________________________________

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_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________

CALLING
I also refer to your calling as your altitude. Your
calling or altitude is the scope of your Kingdom
assignment (within your child’s school, the city, state,
region, nation or world). Be careful not to confuse your
calling with what you think would be nice to do. You
may be a musician who loves playing the local nightclub
scene. While you watch other musicians tour with major
acts and you think it would be nice to do a national
tour. If God did not drop that vision into your spirit, it is
not for you. You will know if you are not fulfilling your
altitude or scope of work if you cannot sleep at night
trying to think of ways to catapult to the vision God has
shown you. Everyone is not called for a national touring.
If you act on something that is not your calling, you will
rapidly see why it is not for you.
Focus on what God has shown you as your
specific role. You will be completely fulfilled carrying out
your calling even though others may be doing similar
work on a broader scale.

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and transcends material things. Dreams are rooted in

4 ego and usually are material in nature. It is easy to have


a dream and not know your specific path to carry it out.
Drug dealers and corporate embezzlers both have
dreams that fuel their desire to be wealthy and acquire
material things. Yet, they are not in alignment with the
What Are The Differences positive ways in which God would lead them to carry out

Between Dreams, Purpose, their vision.


Dreams are often rooted in darkness, lack,
Calling, Passion And struggle, dishonesty and selfishness. We often covet

Vision? other people’s dreams who tell you to “do what I did to
get what I got,” which will never work in the long term.
Vision always aligns with God’s light while dreams may
I just love this question! I’m so glad you asked
not and can be achieved through darkness and outside
(hee, hee). This question exists because so many of the
of God’s protective covering He provides to obedient
motivational speakers and others have used the terms
believers.
vision, dream, calling and purpose synonymously. You
With vision you ask yourself the question,
can easily believe that your dreams are the same as
“What’s in it for God?” and with dreams you ask the
your vision and your purpose is the same as your
question, “What’s in it for me?” Dreams are something
calling. Unless you fully understand the differences, it
outside of yourself or “out there”. It always feels like
can be confusing. Let’s delve deeper into this so you
your dreams are just beyond your current reach or
can be completely clear from this moment forward.
grasp. Yet, when you think about vision, it feels like it is
Let’s first discuss dreams. Vision can only come
already yours because it is within you just waiting to
from God. Dreams on the other hand originate from
come forth.
your ego and are often a response to your current
I know what you might be thinking…”But, Ericka,
circumstances or position in life. Vision is rooted in God
isn’t there something in it for me with vision?” Yes!

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That’s the fun part. When you commit to bringing forth purpose is to work with children who are suffering from
the fullness (not a watered-down version) of the vision childhood diabetes and those that are high risk for the
God has given you, you will receive everything, not only disease. God has shown her that her work with
materially God intends for you. You will receive all of the childhood diabetes will touch every state within the
spiritual, emotional and physical blessings as well. United States. Now it’s time to add Francis’s passion
When you first seek the Kingdom of God, all things will into the mix so you can fully understand her purpose.
be added unto you. You’ve read that scripture all your Her passion is photography. She has loved
life. Now it is time to put it into action. taking pictures since she was a little girl and received
Let’s break down these other words a bit – her first camera from her mother at the age of six. She
purpose, passion and calling. It might be easier to began taking pictures of ladybugs, her friends, her
explain if I give you an example. I want you to meet family and classmates and begged her mother to
Francis. Francis is someone God has given the vision to develop the pictures so she could share them with
end childhood diabetes. He has shown her that it is others. You see, God gave Francis this passion knowing
possible for children to be free from this disease. That it would be part of her purpose and how she carries out
is her vision – the big picture of what is possible. Her her life’s work.
dream is to be a nationally-known photographer and Let’s begin to put the pieces together…Francis’s
have all of the camera equipment she can imagine. vision is to assist juvenile diabetes in no longer existing.
While these seem not to go together, we won’t Her calling (or altitude) is on a national level. Her
understand how all the puzzle pieces fit together for purpose is to use her passion for photography to make
Francis until we take into consideration her purpose, her visionary contribution. God will gift Francis with the
calling and passion. vehicles or avenues she is supposed to use to express
When Francis “sees” this vision, she sees it at a her vision and calling. Her gifts (things that just come
national level. This is her calling. Her calling is her naturally to her and were not actually taught, they were
altitude, the level or scope God has assigned to her deposited in her from God) happen to be in capturing
vision. Her purpose is how she will carry out her the heart and soul of someone through a picture and
Kingdom assignment to the people she is to serve. Her being organized. Her talents (things she is naturally

42 43
good at, but needs to practice developing) are writing
and talking.
So, when it all comes together, Francis’s
purpose is to travel the country talking to/interviewing
children with diabetes and taking their pictures to show
the nation how special these children are and that they
deserve to live without this disease. She will organize
her work in books, calendars, slide shows and in
museum presentations that show people the vast need
for support of this cause.
It is someone else’s calling to find the cure and
someone else’s calling to create a non-profit that funds
the research. While they all share the same vision,
together all of these visionaries will join forces in
answering their visionary call and ending childhood
diabetes. That is why you have many churches with
Pastors who share the same vision of leading people to
salvation through Jesus Christ, yet each of their
churches feel different or are operated differently due
to their different callings, purposes, passion, gifts and
talents. Although these words are often used
interchangeably, they are all components to the puzzle
of vision.

44 45
Begin to ask yourself the question, “If the

5 money were handled (if you no longer had to work for


money), what would I do?” After the first week of
sleeping in, what would you do? What difference would
you make? Who would you serve? How would you serve
them? Somewhere in your answer lies your life’s work.
How Do I Know God’s God’s Word tells us that He will give you the

Specific Vision For Me? desires of your heart. This should give you some insight
and comfort to know that as long as it is for the good of
Will What I Want Be God and His Kingdom, God will bless you with the

Different From What God desires of your heart. Striving toward living His Word
daily keeps you headed in the right direction and will
Wants For My Life? eliminate any gaps you feel between what you would
like to do and what God would have you do.
This is the life question, isn’t it? You have Although there are challenging times in your
probably heard so much about your dreams, your vision Christian walk, it should not feel like drudgery. When
and your purpose, that it leaves you wondering if what you are on the path of God’s vision, you feel joy no
you want for yourself is what God wants for you. As you matter what your circumstances look like. You have a
move forward on The Lord’s path for your life, more and faithful sense of knowing that it is coming together
more of God’s vision for your life will reveal itself. soon. You are deeply fulfilled and focused on moving
Remember, God gave you imagination, emotions, forward. You feel energized, excited and positive. If
passion and a whole host of tools to know what He what you are doing feels like slow torture, it’s a great
would have you do. He created you with passion and joy sign that it is not your vision.
for those things that come naturally to you. There are What is your vision? What has God shown you
signs all around you, all you have to do is ask for it to be that you are to do? What will living your vision look like?
revealed and listen to your life. What will it feel like? It will feel like part imagination

47
(remember, God gave you your imagination, too), part _______________________________________________
dream and part fantasy, but let it rip. Let yourself see _______________________________________________
clearly what you are capable of if you moved yourself _______________________________________________
out of the way. Go ahead…close your eyes and see it. _______________________________________________
Feel it. Taste it. Breathe it. Write it. _______________________________________________
_______________________________________________ _______________________________________________
_______________________________________________ _______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________
_______________________________________________

48 49
6
seemingly insurmountable issues.
In other words, if you don’t respond to God’s
calling, you are limiting your blessings and there are
consequences for disobedience in God’s Kingdom just
as there are consequences in the natural world for a
disobedient child. It is good to know you serve a
What Happens If I Don’t merciful God who will work with you as you get every
Respond To God’s aspect of your life in alignment. Remember a time when

Calling? you were obedient and were greatly rewarded for your
actions? God also has great rewards and promises
when you fully step into his Kingdom and follow his
Ooh, do you really want me to answer this one? lead.
Just because God has given you a vision does not mean The key is that you must take faithful action.
you will choose to bring it forth. Because we have been This is a hard pill to swallow because you may have
blessed with free will, you have to make a decision and been told, “It’s never too late to follow your dream.”
actually choose to be obedient to your vision, calling While doing something toward your vision at any time is
and purpose. If you choose not to heed the call at the better than nothing, not heeding God’s timing can
appointed time, it will dry up like fruit that has stayed create undue suffering and struggle in your life. This is
on the vine too long. It will take longer and more effort God allowing things to get so uncomfortable that you
to bring it forth in it’s designed fullness. You see, God will be forced to move.
brings things to you in seasons and if you are not God has deposited something in you that no
obedient to the seasons of your vision, He will see you one else on the planet can do exactly like you. If you
are not worthy or ready to carry-out His vision and there choose to allow your vision to lay dormant, those who
are consequences to be paid. Disobedience can also you were born to impact will suffer. Whew! That one
lead to experiencing confusion, unforeseen challenges was even hard to write. Not being obedient to your
in your life, seasons of lack, and being plagues by vision leaves not only your own inner suffering, but it

51
overflows into other’s lives. I see only one option. You
must live your vision and start today. But, then again,
I’m a bit biased, I know.

52 53
your list to complete. Then, take action. Work on

7 number 1 until it is complete and then, and only then,


turn your attention to number 2. Allow yourself to be
propelled by the power of completion.
Start with what you already know. Simple, huh?
Although your vision work will be a process, it is a
Where Do I Begin In Living simple process. Not always easy, but it is simple. What
My Vision? has God already shown you about your vision and how
to attain it? Has he shown you a person you should be
calling? Is it time to clean off your desk so you can get
Vision unfolds in bits and pieces. These bits and
to work? Is it time to release certain obligations that
pieces come when you are ready and God allows them
leave you no time for your vision work?
to. When you feel ready to actually take action on your
Take a good look around your world, right where
vision, ask God to reveal it to you. You will know you are
you are sitting right now. What do you see? Does it
ready because although you may feel nervous or a bit
reflect someone really ready? What can you do to ready
fearful, but you are compelled to take action. A spiritual
your life for your vision (Write your answer below)?
mentor of mine taught me to ask God to show you in a
_______________________________________________
way that you can’t mistake it for anything but what it is.
_______________________________________________
He will. You probably already know portions of what you
_______________________________________________
were born to do, so ask God to reveal the next steps to
_______________________________________________
you.
_______________________________________________
Once you begin to conceive your vision, it’s time
_______________________________________________
to take faithful action. Faith without deeds is dead, so
Whether I’m talking with men or women, they
it’s time for action. Where would you like to begin?
usually start with their environment. Do you have a
What would you like to do first? Once that is complete,
clean surface to sit down and actually work? Do you
what would you like to do next? Continue asking
have a file with all of your vision ideas, plans and
yourself this question until you have three things on

55
contacts at your fingertips? Do your surroundings make
you feel like rolling up your sleeves and getting to work
on your vision? Does your environment reflect your
vision? Clearing out your space is a great place to start.
It will help clear your mind so you can fully open up to
hearing the voice of The Lord speaking to you and
directing you.
Obedience is the key to bring forth God’s vision.
You must choose to be obedient in all aspects of your
life. From the way you take care of your body (the vessel
is as important as the vision) to the spouse you choose,
is effected because every aspect of your life exists to
fortify the vision.

56 57
than you would like or run into challenges that make

8 you question if it’s worth moving forward. Your test is


always HUGE and your decision in this phase will make
or break your vision. This is when motivation can be a
challenge. At these times, it is important to make sure
you have written down the vision and keep it posted
How Do I Stay Motivated where you can see it daily with pictures that symbolize

As I Am Working On My your vision coming forth.


Another way to stay focused and motivated is to
Vision? surround yourself with like-minded people also working
to bring forth their vision. Being able to talk about the

When God gives you the vision, He gives you the “bigness” of what you are up to is wonderfully

energy and inspiration to move it forward. The larger motivating and inspiring. If you are unable to find

issue is how to stop working into the night because you anyone immediately around you, there are online

are so moved to bring forth your vision. Vision moves communities of business owners, organization directors

you beyond motivation (trying to use things outside of and visionaries working on their vision that you can

yourself to stay excited about what you are doing), to connect with. I am working on creating a powerful

inspiration (having your spirit within and The Holy Spirit community of Christian business owners and

bringing you joy). Because inspiration is inherent in the visionaries so the synergy that is created can keep you

vision, your ability to be motivated is covered. The key is focused and moving forward with energy, enthusiasm

to stay focused on the vision. It’s when you veer off of and inspiration.

your vision path that motivation becomes an issue. The


toughest part of staying motivated is when you get to
the test phase in your vision process.
You will know you are in the test phase when
you encounter your vision taking longer to manifest

59
9 to where you are on the journey. You really don’t even
take time to look back and see how long it has taken
you to get to this point because you are moving forward
in leaps and bounds daily, weekly and monthly.

How Long Will It Take To


Bring Forth My Vision?

The length of time it takes to create the fullness


of God’s vision varies depending on the scale of your
vision, your level of obedience and how much time you
apply to taking action toward your vision. I have noticed
a trend of about 6 months for those I coach privately to
fully “step into” their greatness and accelerate the
process of their vision coming forth. In my “Visionary
Success Cycle,” I go over the steps you will go through
in bringing forth your vision within one year. Please see
the full Visionary Success Cycle in my workbook, Self-
Coaching: Your Guide to Living Inside the Bull’s-eye.
How quickly you take yourself through these
steps and God’s timing all converge to make your
timeline unique. While that can sound a bit
discouraging, it is important to remember that every
day you are living on purpose and moving your vision
forward, you are feeling ignited, energized and present

61
not being faithful. What do you fear? List them out.

10 Take a look at your list and run it through the truth that
you have not believed God for each of those areas. Fear
is not False Evidence Appearing Real. Fear is a spiritual
issue and no matter how many affirmations, positive
thoughts and poems you use to attempt to overcome,

How Do I Handle My combat or fight your fear, unless you use your spiritual
tools, fear will not leave you alone. When you apply your
Fears About Stepping Out spiritual tools of prayer, renewing your mind,
And Living My Vision? meditation, surrender and speaking about only those
things you desire to attract, fear will leave your life and
if it does resurface, you have the tools to make it
Fear is the reason people choose not to live
disappear.
God’s vision for their lives. It might be fear of not having
To release your fear once and for all, recommit
enough money, fear of not having enough time, fear of
to being faithful and believing that God is going to bless
not having enough energy or fear of stepping into
you more than you can even imagine in each of those
leadership. Whatever your fear is, I have some
areas. Visualize having each of those fears disappear.
wonderful news for you. Your fear is a critical step in
Pray about them. Release them. In my book The
you moving forward in your vision work. Although you
Fearless Living Challenge, I further outline and explain
have probably heard many definitions of fear, God
the specific steps to living fearlessly and The Prayer of
revealed the truth about fear to me about three years
Surrender for you.
ago as I was preparing a lesson for the Teen Sunday
school class I taught at the time.

Fear is the lack of submission and surrender to


God.

Your fear shows you the areas in which you are

63
there will always be countless people who do not
choose to live their vision. Since vision is of light, there
Bonus Question: Is There will always be those who choose to be led by darkness

Enough “Vision” To Go and not step into the light of vision. So, there will
always be more than enough opportunities for success
Around For Everyone? and living your vision.
Go ahead, give yourself permission to be joyful
not only for your vision, but for those around you living

I will always remember sitting in my Economics theirs’. God’s blessings for you have your name on

101 class at Western Washington University and them if you step up and take action to live His vision.

learning the first fundamental law of our economic While the secular world tells you that there is not

system – there are scarce resources and there is not enough of anything to go around, in God’s Kingdom,

enough to go around for everyone. While this question there is plenty here for everyone. Get started taking

seems straight forward, you have to take a look at what your vision to a new level TODAY!

you have believed prior to today. The concepts of I look forward to guiding and supporting you on

success left over from the 80’ and 90’s suggested that your vision path. I have teachings on the specifics of

success looks the same for everyone. Dream home. bringing forth your vision in The Programs and Success

Yacht. Luxurious vacations. Opulence. Store sections of my website.

While you will have access to all of this through Be blessed and I’d love to hear from you! Feel

your vision work, your visionary success will look free to email me with your feedback, questions and

different from anyone else’s. Because there is such insights at info@erickajackson.com.

endless variety and no limits to the options God allows


for you, if everyone chose to live their vision, it would With All My Heart, Ericka

create massive solutions and everyone would have


what they needed.
The challenging aspect of this answer is that

64 65
I Am Here For You…

Above all, know that I am here for you. Please


don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and call me at
(919) 954-8005 or email me at
info@erickajackson.com. I worked to put all that you
really need within this challenge. If, for some reason,
you feel like you need further support and assistance,
don’t hesitate to contact me.
Ericka’s Special Offers and I will also be premiering new offerings and
membership that you will be able to receive at
Resources discounted rates. I will be specific when I announce
them and you can also take advantage of those offers
when they are announced. Please make sure you have
signed up for my monthly e-zine (electronic magazine)
at www.erickajackson.com to stay abreast on upcoming
offers.
Please check my website often, I add new tools
and resources weekly to help further your vision-
journey. www.erickajackson.com.

67
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
OTHER BOOKS BY ERICKA D. JACKSON ERICKA D. JACKSON
Nothing makes Ericka’s eyes sparkle like the
possibility of people living God’s Vision for their lives.
She truly understands that achieving success originates
Self-Coaching: Your Guide to Living Inside the Bull’s- with and follows God. Only once you deeply understand
eye, 3rd Edition your assignment in God’s Kingdom, will you begin to
The Fearless Living Challenge: A 49-day Course To experience authentic success. She skillfully blends
Living Your Greatness spiritual insights with practical knowledge that walk you
Leave Your Job in 2007! A Step-by-Step Plan to Live through the process of fully surrendering and clearing
God’s Vision as Your Full-time Vocation away anything in the way of knowing and acting on
God’s path for your life. She has been gifted with the
ability to “see” others’ life purposes and visions and to
discern what is needed to move them to the next level.
She uses her gifts and experience as a speaker,
emotional healer, and visionary to guide others in living
God’s vision as their vocation, She guides her
audiences in fearless living, time management and
turning their vision work into successful businesses.
Ericka’s life experience and passion for evoking the
best out of others naturally evolved into launching The
Convergence Center in 2001, a company on a mission
to lead a cutting-edge, multi-media movement that
provides Christians with the tools, insights and
processes for achieving personal and professional
freedom.

68 69
She has developed several teaching series
YOU HOLD THE POWER
including The Success Salon®, Bigger! Bolder! Better:
© 2006 by Ericka D. Jackson
Taking Your Business to New Heights®, and The Ericka
You hold the power of co-creation in your hand
Jackson Show®. She is the author of Self Coaching:
More than ever before you must take a stand
Your Guide to Living Inside the Bull’s-eye, The Fearless
Stand up and build your Vision today
Living Challenge: A 49- day Course To Living Your
It’s time to give it your all and no longer just play
Greatness, Leave Your Job in 2007! A Step-by-Step Plan
to Live God’s Vision as Your Full-time Vocation, and The
There is greatness in you the world has not seen
Power of Vision: Recognizing God’s Call.
Your greatness can no longer remain just a dream
She is advancing in ministry currently as a
He put a Vision in you that only you can fulfill
licensed Evangelist. Ms. Jackson continues to share her
You must boldly go forth and not sit still
gifts, talent and expertise with ministries around the
country. She lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with her
How? You might ask. Allow me to say
daughter, Kalii.
Keep your eyes on the prize and do a little each day
What is your Vision? Whom will you serve?
All of God’s goodness you fully deserve

Make today the last day with fears that you wrestle
This is not about you, you are only the vessel
But an unwilling vessel is a dangerous thing
Because the brilliance and gifting remain unseen

God has given the plan on which you shall act


You have all that you need and nothing to lack
No more fears, no more lies, no more living small lives

70 71
Go forth and spread love
With the force of a lion and with faith as your glove
For without you, someone else will not see
All that God needs them to be

It’s time for you to walk in Victory!

72 73