Diligent Study

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

Born in Switzerland in this day in 1807, Louis Agassiz became an important biologist. But perhaps his greatest contribution came through the influences of his time as a teacher at Harvard University.

Author David McCullough has described an exercise Agassiz taught students. This came to be called “the incident of the fish.” As he interviewed students, Agassiz presented them with a dead fish and told them to look at it. Then, he would leave them alone. Students were left wondering what they were to look at, or learn.

We learn much about this process from the experience of Samuel Scudder (one of Agassiz’ many students who would go on to do important work of his own). At first, he could see nothing but a lifeless fish. But Agassiz kept encouraging, “Look, look, look,” and Scudder began to see even more, things that previously he had ignored. The experience lasted three days.

Scudder described the experience as a turning point in his life, which opened up a new world. It was a legacy “of inestimable value, which we could not buy, with which we cannot part.” Agassiz was teaching the importance of study. Examination. Digging deeper. Not being content with the obvious.

Many people need this lesson in their spiritual lives. They are casual Christians, with a shallow faith and a superficial knowledge of the Bible. Their prayer lives do not have power, and they do not impact the world with the Gospel.

Today, make sure that you are not content with a shallow faith, that you aren’t lukewarm about the things of God. Take your relationship with Him seriously. Dig into the Word. Pray and seek Him for a deeper revelation. Receive the grace He offers you through Jesus, today and every day. Allow Him to change your life in a radical way.