Sunday, June 22, 2008

A New Creation

Slave (Awakening) - Michelangelo Buonarroti
Quotes from Michelangelo:
- "The true work of art is but a shadow of the divine perfection."
- "The more the marbles wastes, the more the statue grows."
- "The best artist has that thought alone Which is contained within the marble shell; The sculptor's hand can only break the spell To free the figures slumbering in the stone."

This statue is an unfinished piece of work by Michelangelo. Despite the raw form I think this sculpture is complete and it stirs my heart. I am reminded of the following verses in:

Luke 4:16-19
"And he [Jesus] stood up to read.
The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him.
Unrolling it, he found the placed where it is written:
'The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to preach good new to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to release the oppressed,
to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor.'"

I see so much sorrow in this sculpture but I also see astounding beauty. I think this piece resonates with me because my heart breaks for the bondage that so many people face. Those who have yet to come to the knowledge of Jesus Christ are held captive by their unbelief and the sin that has separated them from God. But just as Christ proclaimed, there is freedom!
I've grown up in the church and I've seen some beautiful pictures of God's anointing and divine calling on his people. However even in the church there are those held captive by all sorts of things. Hearts have been hardened due to unrepentant sin, the study of scripture has been neglected leaving no room for the law of God to convict the soul, and prayer is often missing within the lives of those who claim to be followers of Christ.

Lately, I have been reminded that yes we have been given freedom but our freedom is marked with purpose. We are freed so that we may proclaim the majesty of the One who gave us life. We are freed to share this truth with those who still live in bondage. Our hearts have been stirred as the master artist brings beauty out of chaos chiseling away our imperfections. We are stirred to action. We are stirred to serve.

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