I came across a definition to the word "INSPIRE" that I haven't been able to stop by thinking about. As we talked in a ministry team meeting about encouraging people I felt that the word "encourage" was a little flat and not capturing what our group was really wanting for people and that I saw the alternate definition for inspire which is to "BREATHE IN" and thought, That's IT! We don't want to just make you feel a little better about your situation, but we are hoping to breathe life into the places where you are out of breath.
I personally believe that the idea of inspiring... breathing life into the people around us, is one of the joys of life and one of the core purposes of our response to God's love for us. Adam was a lump of clay and God Breathed Into him - He inspired him. We were dead in sin and God comes through his word and Means of Grace and breathes life back into us and the relationship we have in him. He then tells us to go and share the history and story of God's faithfulness as he uses us to breathe life into the people who are hurting and broken... the dead places of life. He inspires us. We inspire others.
If you've ever traveled on an airplane, they do the demonstration of the masks dropping from the panels in case of a loss of cabin pressure. Oxygen masks fall and the instructions are that we need to get them on ourselves first so that we can Breathe In - THEN we help someone else with theirs. God wants us to be inspired by him, that's what time in his word, in the Bible and in Worship is all about. God inspiring us. But the breath we have in our lungs is meant to be used to then go and serve others... to breathe life into others... to inspire others, all on the foundation of God's grace and his providence.
One day, our bodies will "expire". Our time will be fully spent this side of heaven as God takes us into complete relationship with him in heaven. Until that time, the act of Breathing in God's mercy and Grace and Breathing out his praise and proclamation is what we were meant to do. Communion and Community. I want my work and ministry to do that for you. If there are ways we can serve you even in an email, please help us be better at it.
May God Inspire you today, to be an inspiration for your family, friends, neighbors, dorm mates, coworkers, strangers on the street. And may you breathe in God's love and do it all over again!