Renewed passion

Published 2:17pm Friday, October 22, 2010

When spending time with people, it does not take long to figure out what is important to them; the things they care deeply about quickly become the focus of their conversation.

I am a living example of that regarding my family; my wife, children and grandchildren hold such a special place in my life that they are a regular topic of my conversation (and in my writing, too!).

This invites me to take another opportunity to say something about one of our grandchildren.

Like most 7-year-old young ladies, Mallory is in a big hurry to grow up.

As Gale and I were visiting her at home and playing with her new baby sister the other day, she stood by me and said, “Papa, I’m almost as tall as you!”

That little statement of observation from an energetic 7-year-old might not mean much to the majority of the world, but it does to me because Mallory, along with Jaleah and Addyson, are dear to my heart. I love our granddaughters so passionately that I desire the best for them physically, emotionally, educationally, spiritually and in every way. And I want others to know what outstanding little ladies they are!

The things that we are passionate about are the things we like to talk about, invest in, nurture and maintain sincere concern for. With that in mind, we would all do well to pause often and consider our passion for God. Is He more important to us than anybody or anything else?

If knowing, loving and serving God is not our primary passion, then we are in trouble. And if we, upon taking a realistic and honest look at our lives, discover that we find time to participate and invest in a variety of things but make no purposeful effort to seek to know and serve God in increasingly greater ways, we are not truly passionate for Him. If we are not authentically passionate for Him, we cannot be genuinely passionate about leading sinners to Christ.

There is a heartbreaking epidemic of lack of interest in the things of God in our nation. That is sad enough, but what is of greater concern is the lack of passion for God among those who make up the Church. The words of Christ to the Church in Ephesus in Revelation 2:4 are every bit as true of the Church today as they were when originally penned: “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love” (NIV).

As the address continued, the Lord reminded them that failure to repent and return to the place of loving God passionately would result in severe consequences for them. That, too, applies to us today.

However, the good news is, if we find that we are not as passionate for God as we should be, there is a remedy. That remedy begins as we ask Him to give us fresh passion for Him, and a good place for that fresh passion for God to begin is found in paying attention to what His Word has to say to us.

God’s Word directs us to love Him deeply and absolutely above all else. I challenge us all to measure our devotion to God against the words of Deuteronomy 6:5: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”

This brief reminder should be viewed as the basic components that are essential to a renewed and fresh passion for God.

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