Lech l’cha literally means “Go for” or “to yourself” (perhaps, “within” yourself). As Rashi says, “Go for your own benefit, for your own good.” A spiritual quest is often one made alone, away from the comforts and influences found in one’s home.  Avram begins a journey of religious awakening away from the possible objections of his father, taking a road that is at once unfamiliar to him and foreign to his family.  Only when taken freely and independently, as a matter of choice (as opposed to coercion), will the act of devotion lead to fulfillment; in this case, the father of a great nation. One might say that God coerces Avram. God commands, Lech!, “Go!” However, I view this “command” as part of a deeper intention: “If you want to improve, if you want to grow as an individual, if you want to make a difference in this world, then you must take this next ‘step’ out away from the place you are comfortable.”

Look how this is different from other divine commands, “Follow these commandments or you will be punished!” There is no threat of punishment here.

As a result of this journey God says, “I will make your name great and you will be a blessing” (12:2).  Rashi correctly translates this as a command as opposed to something Avram will receive: “… and you will be a blessing”—you will bring blessings to others.  May you have the personal qualities of Avram: a generous demeanor, a humble soul, and a modest spirit, then blessings will be available to you to bestow upon others (based on commentary in Itturay Torah).