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How Serious Are You?

Mediocre. Ordinary. Average. Commonplace. Run of the mill. So-so. Unexceptional. Lack-luster. Not-so-hot. Uninspired. Tolerable. Plain vanilla. Bland. Insignificant. Forgettable.

How many people do you know that could be described by these words listed above?  How many of those you just named set out to be so passive that they make little or no impact in life on anyone?  Did we not all have dreams as children of being the person scoring the wining goal, running for the touchdown, hitting the grand slam, singing before a crowd that was on their feet when we finished singing, or envision some day leading a winning team?  Are children’s imaginations not filled with grandeur?  Are teenagers not continually dreaming of soaring to the highest heights in their quest for achievement? 

Since that is the case for most of us, what happens to us that we forsake our dreams, mothball our visions, and forever discard our hopes of doing great things?  Is it possible that the constant daily demands begin to require so very much of our energies that we succumb to doing the “tyranny of the urgent” and forego reaching for “the unreachable star”?  I know that in my own life, vision casting becomes more difficult as the demands of life increase.  The zeal to reach beyond that which is already very challenging diminishes due to the lack of time to see dreams actualized and functional.

We were made in God’s image.  He is omnipotent. We are finite. Our strength has to come from the LORD.  He sustains, provides, encourages, empowers, energizes, and accomplishes what is done through us.  Each of us have different areas where we have seen God do great things.  Some of you have reared children who have achieved the highest awards and promotions in business.  Others have families that have withstood the harshest of tests and come through stronger.  Some are men and women recognized regionally or nationally for your contributions and successes.  Some “will be recognized” when you stand before our LORD and He moves you from “least to the greatest” because of your servant spirit.

One of the favorite promises of Jesus is found in John 10:10 – I came to give you life and to give it more abundantly”. Other passages are also Bible promises for us… Psalm 16:11 –You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 37:4 – Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart

Bertoldo de Giovanni (1420-1491) is a name even the most enthusiastic lover of art is unlikely to recognize. He was the pupil of Donatello, the greatest sculptor of his time, and he was the teacher of Michelangelo, the greatest sculptor of all time. Michelangelo was only 14 years old when he came to Bertoldo, but it was already obvious that he was enormously gifted. Bertoldo was wise enough to realize that gifted people are often tempted to coast rather than grow, and therefore he kept trying to pressure his young prodigy to work seriously at his art.

One day he came into the studio to find Michelangelo toying with a piece of sculpture far beneath his abilities. Bertoldo grabbed a hammer, stomped across the room, and smashed the work into tiny pieces, shouting this unforgettable message, “Michelangelo, talent is cheap; dedication is costly!” (Copied)