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Roses have thorns: Power of vision

There’s a story told about a blind man who, driven into despair by his inability to see, asked an old sage: “Is there anything worse than lack of sight?” Whereupon the old sage answered: “Lack of vision.”
The point of the sage’s statement is that it is better to have vision and no eyesight than to have eyesight and no vision. A blind person with vision can be motivated by the power of vision to surmount the lack of sight. Which is why, I suppose, we have seen some blind people attain admirable levels of success in some areas of life such as music and academia, even outperforming sighted individuals.
If God has been gracious enough to give you eyesight in the new year, be grateful for that. But woe unto you if you have eyes but do not see – if you lack vision! You can have the sharpest eyes and yet be a failure in the new year – and in life in general – because of lack of vision. A blind person with vision can be more successful than a sighted person without vision.
Vision is, after all, the ability to “see” what the biological eyes cannot see; the ability to see opportunities and avenues of success that the average person cannot even catch a glimpse of. People of vision will see opportunity where others see only adversity; they will see possibility where others only see impossibility; they will see success where others see no access.
It could be said, as a matter of fact, that vision is about perception. You can either see a situation as an obstacle or a challenge. Take a cow, for instance. To one person it represents an investment in agriculture; and to another a source of material for making shoes. To yet another a cow is meat for the dinner table.
Take a look at the new year, 2015. What do you see? A year full of failure? A year full of obstacles and troubles and tribulations? Or perhaps a year of triumph and hope? You can choose to focus on the negatives that await you in the new year, or you can choose to focus on the positives and exploit them to the fullest. Vision means you see the bright morning after the storm; the dawn after the dark night; the triumph after the failures; the proverbial light at the end of the dark tunnel.
But then vision is not pretence or closing your eyes and ears to challenges or threats to your dreams and plans. Vision takes note of the problems but never loses sight of the crown. Vision does not deny the fact that roses have thorns; it acknowledges the thorns but strives for the aroma and beauty of the unfurled rose.
Vision also means that you do not get moved by how the journey starts but focus on the end. As the oft-quoted cliché goes, it is not how you start that matters, but how you end. You might have hit some bumps upon starting the new year, but it is still early days; you still have many months to the year-end. You can still pick yourself up, pick the pieces up, and triumph over failure, doubt and fear. Vision is that special ability that enables you to persevere till you achieve your goal.
Vision is more than just a glimpse of what must be or will be; it is also an act. It is not just about a verbal declaration of intent – it is also about actions that lead to the realisation of the intent.
Vision demands more from you than the resolutions you might have made for 2015; it demands purposeful action to do what you resolved.