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Eric's Sunday Sermon; Inspiration

Updated on September 27, 2015

What inspires you?

can we get inspired into serenity?
can we get inspired into serenity? | Source

Just what is inspiration?

Get inspired! Did you know that inspiration can mean the act of drawing air into the lungs? A rather important act if you want to live. "You are the very air I breathe in order to survive". That puts an interesting twist on the concept of inspiration. Before reading further stop for a moment if you will and try to define inspiration in your head. It is a nebulous concept that tries to defy definition. Inspiration does not fit nicely into definitions. Yet it seems to be a very important aspect of our lives. Inspiring someone is a wonderful act of charity.

I went to an old stand by to get a definition of inspiration. Merriam-Webster has one of the most noncommittal definitions I have ever read. The top spot goes like this:" : something that makes someone want to do something or that gives someone an idea about what to do or create : a force or influence that inspires someone." Really now. A definition that uses "someone" twice and "something" twice in one sentence?

Yes this is a strange way to start a sermon. Not very inspiring is it? Well welcome to the world of the spiritual. In the spiritual arena we find folks that really try hard to define and set down facts and "the way it is" for other people. Truths are bottled and configured so that they are easily understood by the masses and lend themselves to persuasion toward a particular belief. We reckon that is what preaching generally is.

Well please sit down for a moment and let me preach to you about a mystery of faith. A reality that you cannot predict or box in with a set of rules. We do not know exactly what it looks like but let us go find some inspiration. Hey we will know what it is when we find it. A leap of faith that it is there. Let us let go and go see!

This touts six hours of inspirational music. That just strikes me as a little too much inspiration. And I have trouble getting inspired by a picture of war. But

We wonder why certain things are inspirational to one and not to another.

Can one person really inspire another?
Can one person really inspire another? | Source

Looking for inspiration.

There is a very interesting phenomena that just seems to be true. Somethings that we go looking for are just not something we can find by looking. Romantic love is just one of those things. It seems that it must find you. Now along those lines we have a very old concept that has been taken to very new heights. Dating services. Matches of compatibility based on algorithms. And there are thousands of testimonials out there telling us they work. Interesting to the extreme if you believe them.

And to be sure if you are looking for inspiration all you need do is go to the web and type in inspiration and something like photos, poetry or music and presto you can get inspired.

How about inspiration being found in the Bible or Koran or Dharma? Certainly you can type into your trusty search engine "inspiration Bible" and be lead straight away to inspiration.

There is something amiss about the above notions. "I am going to go get inspired". It just rings hallow. Inspiration just does not seem like a 1+1=2 concept. Perhaps it is to you. Please share that with us in the comment section.

There is a man I know who just this week told me that he gets all inspired by pictures of naked women. Sure we get that. But inspired to do what exactly? And there you have it. The gem we are looking for right in front of our faces. Inspiration does not exist as a thing, it has no lifeblood apart from the "to" word. Inspiration does not exist apart from the action we are inspired to take.

We would look very strangely at the woman who just sat there and said that she was full of inspiration. We would of course ask her "inspiration to do what?"

Does the sun rising over the Grand Canyon inspire you?

In fact it was already about 95 degrees and that sun meant a temperature coming that was over 110 degrees and we knew it. So we were inspired to pack up and get out of there.
In fact it was already about 95 degrees and that sun meant a temperature coming that was over 110 degrees and we knew it. So we were inspired to pack up and get out of there. | Source

This song seems to always come up under a search for inspirational music. You decide.

Inspired versus motivated

There is a fine line between motivated and inspired. But it helps us to understand inspiration. A paycheck at the end of the week is not inspirational it is motivational. An ad for a super sale is not inspirational it is motivational. The best we can make out is that somehow inspiration has the attribute of the spiritual.

Here is a fun distinction. At least a few times a year a preacher will give a sermon on giving your money to the preacher's cause. They will for sure reference some bible verses. They will extol the virtues of giving and stewardship. And to be sure some of these have motivated me to give. But I have never been inspired to give money. In my view Merriam-Webster makes a rather large mistake with this second listing for inspiration ": a person, place, experience, etc., that makes someone want to do or create something". Nope I am not buying that inspiration is that that makes us do something. That is motivation. But yes I am fully in on the concept that it makes us want to create something. I told you it was an interesting distinction.


Now let us "get" inspired.

Look inward please. Then look outward. So far this sermon is anything but inspirational. It is making me yawn. Hang on there and stick with it. This part is easier to do than to explain. Let me show you.

I need you. I am feeling insecure and a bit lost. I have lost my confidence and passion. In my head I know that I am a child of God and that I am talented and skillful. But in my heart I am lacking and find no comfort in what I do. But with your help I can rise above and again fill my heart with a purpose and strength to carry on and go forth bearing fruit. You have it within you to raise me up. You are special and have the gift I need to thrive. You can be that breath of air that inspires me. By your kindness and gentleness you can soothe me. By your strength and support you can push me to greater heights and fulfillment. You have what I need and I need your brotherly love.

The above is sincere. I am a normal human if that is possible. Like most of our brothers and sisters I suffer as I describe. And that part about you is also true. We, each one of us, has the power to inspire another. The human condition is such that some have and some have not. Here we speak of a very fluid situation. One of the spirit and not the material. Sometimes we have it and sometimes we don't. Now let me motivate you.

We, by our nature, can inspire others. It does not take inspiration to be an inspiration. It just takes some motivation to do something. This one is easy. Tell someone that you love them and that their contributions enrich your life. Tell them the truth. Actually tell them something that you would like them to do for you. Actually value them and let them know it. Take an interest in the things they do. Ask them about their passions.

The one thing that inspires me every single time I do it is; inspiring others.

Some self help gurus tell you that you can do this for yourself all by yourself. There are all kinds of issues with that concept. "Inspire yourself" is an interesting area to explore. But it brings us to our final thought.

One day, one hour a certain song brings me inspiration. The same song in a different day in a different hour does not inspire me. The song remains the same. The only thing that changes is me and my attitude. That tells us quite clearly that inspiration is really an inside job. So how do we ready ourselves to receive inspiration? The answer is startling.

We have to want to be inspired. Easier said than done.

And that brings us to the sermon part. Truth be told inspiration is just a fancy way of saying that God and love are in our hearts. All kinds of things can transport that love. The absolute best conveyor is people. The only criteria for love and God entering our hearts and inspiring us is the desire. Today let us go forward and help someone want to be inspired.

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    • profile image

      Kathleen Kerswig 22 months ago

      Well, this is an interesting article about inspiration. I find myself getting inspired but almost everything I read here on HubPages or on Facebook, or Twitter for that matter. I am inspired to share my thoughts on what I read, either in writing or verbally with friends. I am currently teaching a class at my church and I find myself often sharing the inspirational phrases and quotes I see on Facebook. I like getting the feedback from others to see if they interpret the ideas in a new way.

      I love the fact that you get inspired by inspiring others. That is awesome! Thanks for sharing! Blessings!

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 22 months ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      I am aware that inspiration can mean the act of drawing air into the lungs. I've learned that long ago when I first had my CPR training and the trainer asked us to define inspiration in our own words. We all defined it according to what we know, which is basically the process or feeling of stimulating our senses. No one in the class ever mentioned about the drawing in of breath or inhalation. And, yes that's really very interesting.

      I like your conclusion about the subject "that God and love are in our hearts" . It feels good to get inspired and great if we could all aspire to inspire.

      Thank you for another great Sunday sermon.

      Love from the sky~

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 22 months ago from Olympia, WA

      Another chapter of your future book is completed. You know I'm not kidding....get it done, buddy!!!!!

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Kathleen,

      Receptive to inspiration - is you. Funny but you being all fired up just fired me up. Thank you. This synergism thing is really cool!

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Cris,

      The etymology of the word is in itself inspiring. Like a total blending of the breath of oxygen and spirit. It is like breathing with a power booster additive. I really like your line "aspire to inspire". Thank you.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      In fact Bill your kind acts of inspiration were directly responsible for this sermon. And yes I am taking steps to actually follow through. Thank you.

    • profile image

      Kathleen Kerswig 22 months ago

      Synergy is happening every day, everywhere, all the time! I love it! ;)

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Well you just inspired me. I have not written on my favorite subject for a while, so now I will. Thank you.

    • Dana Tate profile image

      Dana Tate 22 months ago from LOS ANGELES

      Well this hub ispired me thats for sure. I also get inspired by nature so I love the beach, the park, or people watching.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dana, "These are a few of my favorite things". That nature thing, including people in general is really cool. Talk about giving expecting nothing in return. That does it! I am going for a hike this afternoon. Thanks

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 22 months ago from The Caribbean

      Eric, thanks especially for the explanations on inspiration and motivation. Glad that you figured out the difference. You're quite an inspiration!

    • denise.w.anderson profile image

      Denise W Anderson 22 months ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

      I love sunrises and sunsets. There is something about seeing the sun on the horizon surrounded by a plethora of color that inspires me to be a better person. I feel that I have been touched by God himself when I participate with him in this miracle of creation. I feel his innate goodness and love being poured into me without measure. That is what I want to do and be for others. I want them to feel God's love for them shining through me.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dora, I think that we learn a whole lot from words and even more from the way we use them. Over to the right right now is an ad for a hub about "motivational" sermons. For some reason I just put "sales" and "motivation" together and "God" and "inspiration" together. Much more to learn.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Denise,

      If nobody told you yet today, let me be the first. His love does indeed shine through you. True beauty is what I speak of and you have it.

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Fuller 22 months ago from Southern Illinois

      I must say that your writing inspires me. Your down-to-earth sermons makes me think and want to inspire others by my actions. ie, A smile, a kind word, etc. Thank you.

    • Marion Drury profile image

      Marion Drury 22 months ago from Sydney, Australia

      Thank you for another inspiring hub.

    • cleaner3 profile image

      cleaner3 22 months ago from Pueblo, Colorado

      "A nebulous concept" I like that..

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Ruby. You do indeed bless us with your kind words. I am grateful.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      That is very kind of you Marion. I look forward to learning more about you through your hubs.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      I liked the imagery of the cloud with that word Cleaner3. Thank you for noticing and the comment.

    • Venkatachari M profile image

      Venkatachari M 22 months ago from Hyderabad, India

      Wow! This is wonderful message. Help ourselves or somebody to be got inspired or to be ready to be inspired. Whatever we do is only a creating a situation or field for making one to be ready to be inspired. Actual inspiration is motivated from within one's own self. That is why we feel inspired at times and not at other times, whereas the thing inspiring us remains same.

      Many thanks for stimulating some inspiration.

    • Ericdierker profile image
      Author

      Eric Dierker 22 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Venkatachari,

      Isn't that part about inspiration amazing. The outside stimuli can remain constant but our reception of it can change drastically. Something tells me that we have much inquiry into this area left to us. Right now I am trying to study my diet and what effect that may have. Thank you for your visit and comment.

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