A young musician dreamed of being famous someday. He practiced hard at his instruments and learned to play very well.
One day, he heard a voice in his head, calling him to sing a song he had never heard before. He wrote down the words and notes for the song and started to play it. Some people listening nearby heard the song and were amazed. They had to hear him play it again. He played it again for them and then to many other people afterward.
This song grew in popularity, and so did he. Everyone loved this young musician and the beautiful song he had created.
It wasn’t long before he had to hire a manager to help him organize his shows and make more music. The manager had a lot of advice for the kinds of music the musician should write. He made many new songs based on these suggestions, but none of them earned as much attention as his original song. He sang and sang, but people stopped listening to him.
He went to other musicians and tried to get their advice. He listened to the many voices that told him to sing in many different ways. He tried many styles, but none of them earned him the love and admiration of his original song.
He went to his fans and asked them what they wanted to hear. They told him they didn’t like his new songs. They only wanted to hear the one song they already loved.
All of the negative feedback made him want to quit making music. He thought back to the days before he was famous, when he first heard the voice that inspired that first, popular song.
Then it suddenly occurred to him. “The Voice!” he said. “Yes, the Voice! That is where the beautiful song came from. It didn’t come from the manager or other musicians. It didn’t come from my fans. It came from the Voice!
“Voice,” he said looking up to the sky. “I don’t know if you can hear me, but I’m sorry. I’m sorry I listened to everyone but you. It was you who inspired me all along. If you find me worthy, please give me another song to sing and share with the people of this world.”
At first there was a dull silence. Then he heard the Voice again. It was giving him a song—a new song of joy and sorrow mixed together. This he wrote down, just as he had done years earlier. He played the song, and little by little, people came to hear him sing again. They loved the new song just as much as the first song.
The musician never listened to another voice again, and he never took credit for the creation of his art. It was the Voice’s song all along.
I am the LORD your God: you shall not have strange gods before me.