Read: Matthew 25:14-17 |
Tradition has it that Michelangelo was teaching some art students one day. He walked over to one of his students and started painting on their canvas. He then handed the student the brush.The awestruck student asked: “How can I finish what you have started?”
Michelangelo challenged him by saying, “Let this inspire you to finish what I have started.”
A few weeks ago, we started discussing and dissecting the parable found in Matthew 25:14-17 in order to mine the meaning and mimic the application in our daily lives. The Two-fold return servant in verse 17 was surely acting on Inspiration, to make an Investment and earn Interest or a return.
This week. We will examine the importance of “Inspiration” in the life of a believer.
Inspiration serves as a spark plug for our faith. Inspiration occurs when our faith, intellect, will or emotions are stimulated to the point that we are prompted to act or respond. When Michelangelo inspired his student, it engendered a response from the student to apply their skills to finish the great work.
Spiritual inspiration plays an important role in the life of a believer. It is important that we:
- Position ourselves to receive Inspiration
- Respond to Inspiration
- Be an inspiration to others
Position ourselves to receive Inspiration
The servants who had a five-fold and two-fold return were inspired to apply their abilities and allow God to bless their efforts. Inspired and motivated, they stayed focused and worked to the best of their abilities to serve the Master.
To position ourselves to receive inspiration, seek to spend time with God by reading and meditating on His Word each day.
At times, I receive inspiration from the preached word, a song, an example I see or read or hear about. For me, these moments either expose sin in my life, ignite a sudden insight, or illuminate the path of righteousness. Waiting upon God’s direction and receiving inspiration is part of our Christian duty. [I Thessalonians 1:3]
Respond to Inspiration
We can respond to inspiration in a couple of ways. We can:
- Act on it
- Rationalize it
When reading a story of how someone went from rags to riches, what is your typical reaction? Does it inspire you to try to apply some of those principles in your life as you celebrate their blessing? Or, does it trigger rationalization and make you wonder why more poor people are not doing the same thing?
In one case, the inspirational experience is examined to make a personal application. In the second, the experience is examined to contrive a judgment. When inspired, seek to find any lessons that God may have for us and act on them. [Psalm 32:8] When we allow rationalization, we disperse the inspiring effect before it has a chance to penetrate to our hearts. By passing judgement on others, we could be bypassing God’s directions and blessings.
Be an inspiration to others
There are several believers in my life who inspire me. They are living testimonies of what God can do. I aspire to be as inspiring and effective as they are.
Just as Michelangelo inspired and challenged his student to finish what he started, Christ also inspired and challenged the disciples and each of us. The Great Commission calls for us to go and finish the great work that He started from Judea to the outer most parts of the earth. [Matthew 28:19]
1. Discover –
A. What are the primary sources of your inspiration? Prayer, Reading the Bible, God’s promises, Songs, Preaching, Bible Study, other? Share one or two below.
B. Do you live a life that reflects the source of your inspiration and beliefs? Why or why not?
2. Develop –
A. Have you ever wondered why everyone else is so “excited” and “inspired”, yet you do not feel what they must be experiencing? Looking back can you rationalize, why you were disconnected from the inspiration that others were experiencing?
B. Share an experience that overwhelmed you with a feeling of inspiration.
3. Demonstrate –
A. Has anyone ever told you that you were an inspiration to them? Were you surprised? Why or Why not?
B. Share with three people who inspire you and tell them how they inspire you and why. Encourage them to keep up the faith.