Let’s face it: it’s easy to get dragged down by life. It’s not even the really sad or angering moments that do it, just the daily grind. You get up, get the kids ready for school, go to work at a job you’re probably not passionate about, come home to deal with any family issues that have popped up, make dinner, make sure the house is as clean as you want it, and hopefully have an hour to unwind before bed. That same cycle repeated every day throughout the work week. Wash, rinse, repeat…while the weeks and months and years tick away.
There’s not a whole lot of passion left. It’s been largely replaced by an empty emotionalism, in part because that’s all we have time for and in part because we’ve lost our focus in life. We don’t work as though God is our boss, as Colossians 3:23 tells us to, neither do we wake up celebrating that we get to honor Him through our work. We often don’t feel like we’re making a difference, even if our job happens to be working for a charity or church.
Instead, we rant and rave over things for a couple weeks before finding something else to get upset about. Gun control after a school shooting, then religious equality when a kid is suspended for wearing prayer beads, then the government’s fiscal cliff and resultant spending cuts. A week or two from now, something else will happen and the outrage will start anew.
There are two things to take from this: 1. We are not really passionate anymore, just emotional. 2. We’re meant to be passionate about something.
Our strong reactions to things and our fire to change the world around is can be wonderful things, but only if they’re grounded in God and we’re committed to them. God has given us each a calling in life, something that He intends for us to do for Him and His kingdom. That’s what we should be passionate about, something that should always well up the fire that He has placed in us, that fire that is so eager to be stirred that it will flare up over issues that we aren’t even committed to, simply because it’s there.
My challenge for you this week is to think about what really gets you passionate. Be careful to separate passion from an emotional reaction. Think about a cause you could actually devote yourself to, not just a situation that upsets you but that you feel no real desire to get in the trenches yourself to change it. And then…get in the trenches. You don’t have to quit your job (though, if you can find a job in your passion that pays well enough to support you and your family, by all means, go for it!), but take some time on the weekend or a couple evenings a week, put aside all the mundane issues and stress, and direct your inner fire toward something you’re committed to. Fan the flames of your passion, not just because you’re called to work for God, but because that passion will fuel the rest of your life, giving you direction, purpose, and energy.
To be perfectly honest, I haven’t been fully committed yet to the cause of getting this message out to people. I’ve been halfhearted, dreaming more of being published than working to make it a reality. I am, as of today, dedicating myself to this calling on my life. Yes, there will be setbacks and yes, I won’t want to work at it every day, but this is what I’m passionate about. This is what gets me fired up.
What are you willing to commit yourself to? What’s going to get you fired up?