Living in Vision

Video link – Indianapolis Colts Head Coach – Chuck Pagano delivers inspiring message to his team

And the LORD answered me, and said , Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. – Habakkuk 2:2 (KJV)

If you do not follow NFL football closely you may not know the name Chuck Pagano or be aware of his current plight. Pagano is the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts who was diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia in September of this year. He took a leave of absence from his coaching duties to undergo treatment for his cancer. However he was well enough to visit his team last Sunday after their win against the Miami Dolphins to deliver an inspiring speech the link to which is contained in this post. Even prior to Pagano’s speech, The team rallied around their ill coach, winning four of five games since he’s been off the sidelines. The Colts fan base has shown it’s support of Pagano with banners and clothing carrying the phrase, Chuckstrong a play on words from the “Live Strong” organization founded by Lance Armstrong.

While not ignoring his current difficult circumstances, Pagano made it clear he was living to see a brighter future, a future that would include him dancing at his daughters’ wedding and coaching his teams on to several Super Bowl victories. I don’t know of Pagano’s religious beliefs, but as it is said in some preaching circles, Pagano’s speech to his team will “preach.” There is a message in it for the Christian community. Scripture reminds us that “we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:7 – KJV) and that “without faith it is impossible to please God” (Heb. 11:6 – NIV). The writer of the book of Hebrews describes faith as “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” 11:1 (KJV). In order words, believers are to “live in vision.”

Living in vision is not always an easy place to live. When the going gets tough, we are tempted to focus on the wind and waves and to lose sight of the one who can quite the storm or either guide us safely through it. From time to time we all fall prey to a case of spiritual amnesia or ADD. We forget God’s past faithfulness. That is why it is so important for us to consistently practice the spiritual disciplines of prayer, Bible study, worship and fellowship with other believers. We will only live in vision to the extend that we are transformed by the renewing of our minds (Romans 12:2).

Living in vision requires a careful balancing act. When faced with difficult circumstances our first reaction may be to ignore the circumstances in the hopes that God will somehow airlift us out of them. Another common reaction is to become overwhelmed by our circumstances. Either reaction results in inaction and our situation is unlikely to improve. We must take vision propelled action knowing that God has promised to give us hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11). Our current situation in no way impedes the fulfillment of God’s plans for us.

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8 comments

  1. This message struck a cord with me. It gently reminded and encouraged me to take every moment captive as well as follow through on priorities spelled out in the Bible. Thanks for another power-packed message. Blessings.

    1. Thanks Tanya. I was very moved by Pagano’s remarks to his team. I have several co-workers who are either personally battling cancer or who have family members who are.

  2. Again, Thanks Rev for the words you have shared! I am always inspired to keep on living and moving beyond my circumstances! Praise God for you Rev. Stith!

  3. I too watched and listened to Pagano’s heart-felt words to his colleagues, and was extremely touched by his commitment to his family. It takes a special kind of courage to stare probable death in the face and claim victory. God-given Courage! Thanks for posting Rev. Stith

    1. Thanks for the comments Mario. I just read last evening that Coach Pagano has been declared cancer free and the hope is to have him back on the sidelines by the end of the season