Like our not, as human beings we are defined and shaped by our passions.
People sometimes say I teach Bible, but that’s not ultimately my aim. The Bible is not the ultimate end, it is a glorious means to an end. My objective is to use the Bible, as it was meant to be used, to ultimately fuel passion. More specifically passion for a majestic and beautiful God. What you and I learn mentally is not the ultimately thing in life. It is important, but there are plenty of people that can recite the Bible and are dead with no passion. When these people are in churches we have to constantly convince them to get excited about Jesus. However, when the Bible does its work and fuels passion you do not need to ask people to do anything. A man may know his wife intimately but without passion he can easily forget an anniversary. However, a man passionately in love knows information and responds to it very differently. Knowledge is important, but it is not enough without passion.
People are passionate about all sorts of things. I can tell what you are passionate about by going to your home or going to work with you. What do you talk about? If you had a day off from your responsibilities and family what would you do? That tells you what or who you love. When you go to work what do you talk about in the break room and on your lunch break? I used to work with a man who would come to me to discuss a project we were working on and as soon as the problem was resolved, he would tell me the latest thing he had read in a book or his Bible before he left. He was passionate. He could not help but speak about the things that stirred his soul.
Passion gives you abilities you never knew you had. Have you ever met a man who tells you how poorly he did in school and how difficult math was for him? That same man will go to work Monday morning and recite all the stats from the football game on Sunday. He can tell you the number of yards passing, receiving and rushing. He can tell you completion percentages and who ranks where. He can tell you who’s record is now so bad they won’t make the playoffs and who may make the wild card game. Why? He’s passionate. He was not passionate in school because he didn’t see anything to get excited about in triangles and shapes and trigonometry. He was “bad” at math. However, once his passions were engaged he immediately found an aptitude for math.
Passion counts no costs. Have you ever noticed that? Let’s say you have a friend in photography. He may live on an average income in a very average house, but the odds are his cameras are top dollar. Somehow he finds a way to scrimp, save, and make adjustments so that he can get the best cameras. You see guys that are in to their cars. Their wives and children may be in old, faded clothes and the house in disrepair but their car is bright and polished and full of new parts. Another guy may drive a twenty-year-old run down car but have a shiny new bass boat or motorcycle in his garage. Why? Because his is passionate.
Our passions ultimately define us. They make us into the person we become. As we pursue our passions it forms and shapes us. It affects our personality, our loves, our values, and our time. Therefore the most important question is who or what are you passionate about? If your ultimate passion is anything but Jesus, one day it will be nothing more than a brief vapor. When you die, you will be separated from it and it will be over. How differently things will look that moment after you and I will take our last breath. As Leonard Ravenhill used to say, “No one will be sorry they were ‘super spiritual’ on judgment day.” We were created for eternal passions, not temporal ones.
We are made for passion. We are made to live with passion. It gives us abilities we did not know we had. It fills our life with purpose and meaning. Where’s your passion? Or perhaps a better question is who is your passion?