4 steps to effective vision casting

An old Japanese proverb says, “Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.” Many churches are stuck not because they don’t have a dream or a vision, but rather because they don’t know how to break that dream down into tangible implementable steps that build culture and drive the church towards a preferred future. Then when stuckness begins to settle in, the leaders in the room start doing what they are wired to do, they lead. But when there is no clearly articulated unifying vision all of those leaders leading the direction that they think is best turns into a nightmare in a hurry. Below are 4 steps you can take to be more effective in casting vision and avoid that nightmare scenario:


It may be contrary to what many people say about vision but the reality is people will follow a vision that communicates an immediate need and can connect on an emotional level with the audience. If you get too far down the road into the future with your vision casting things have a tendency to get blurry, confusing, and too conceptual for many people. Just define the problem or the crisis. Why is it necessary to act? Why now? Why is it unacceptable to stay “where we are”? Why do we have to go “there”?


Once the crisis has been communicated and understood then the vision must drive the audience to action. What must be done? What is the solution? Where is “there”?


The step you’re asking people to take has to be simple, clear, and logical. The audience has been moved and their emotions are stirred. Perhaps there is even righteous indignation. Someone has to do something and that someone is us! But people can’t follow what they do not know. How are they supposed to respond?


People do not get excited about what they’ve already heard over and over again. The New Testament doesn’t start with Matthew, Matthew, Matthew and Matthew. God used 4 accounts to tell the story of His Son. Within those accounts Jesus used a number of different parables to tell the same message. People are inspired by a “new” vision. How are you going to creatively say things in a “new way.”

Need help making vision real at your church? Put my experience to work for you!

A big thanks to Matt Thompson, the Worship Pastor at Sun Valley Community Church (Gilbert Campus) for the conversation that led to this blog post!

Posted in Leadership

3 Responses to “4 steps to effective vision casting”

  1. Brian Dodd August 2, 2012 at 1:53 pm #


    Great list! I want also add another “C” – Crisp. The vision needs to be repeatable. This allows for those in churches to easily and effectively multiply the vision to others.

    Just a thought. This is a great post.


  2. Paul Alexander August 2, 2012 at 2:51 pm #

    Thanks for the addition Brian! Great thought!

  3. David McGowin June 1, 2017 at 6:54 pm #

    This is really helpful. We are having a board meeting at my church in a couple of weeks because we are stuck. So thanks for sharing.

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