Passionate Digression

Sharing our faith is always a good thing to do, but asking why and how are also good things to do. So…do we love our passion? They are ours to love so yeah I guess so. Is our passion God? How do you speak about God? A good question, maybe it is one I just need to contemplate? But how do we speak about our passion of God as evangelists? Not do we evangelize per-SE, but do we speak of God as a passion? My previous pastor would say we are all evangelists of something, naturally, because we all like things.

So what moves you? Is it only a passion when it makes you giddy? Do you always have something to say about God? Is he readily on your lips? Is he your passion? These are challenging questions. I am passionate about the subject of God about speaking about God? But what about God himself, hmm…yes? Is God someone whom you share because you just can’t help it? You know like Football? Baseball? Basketball? Soccer? Should we be as impassioned about God as a pop-singer is on stage?

Is it really true that you only spend effort sharing the things you enjoy? We enjoy victory, we share victories. We enjoy food, we share food. We enjoy a good book or TV show, so we share about it. We enjoy each others company so we want to share in more of it. We enjoys sports. These are easy things to share.

But do we evangelize things we know will probably experience backlash? For the most part people are free to engage in whatever they like no matter how niche because it is what you are into and it is interesting, but if that interest had a lot of baggage connected would you equally evangelize it? What consequences are possibly attached to your passions? I can say I love and appreciate Michael Jackson but the last few years of his life were rife with scandal. This does not affect my passion for his music even though there may be some stigma with that belief. But that consequence is low-level, people will probably not break fellowship with me because of it.

What things carry baggage that you refrain from sharing? Well who is in your world that prevents you from being yourself? What are the stigmas associated with your interests? Why are some interests more socially acceptable than others?

What is wrong with me that I care? Fear of man? I want to be myself. I like movies and books and video games and knights and dragons and well I am a nerd basically. I like writing and reading about fantasy, I enjoy orcs and monsters and men with swords ready to put them down. But I do not let those particular interests be known. Well, too late now…but there is still a certain stigma to being that kind of nerd that persists. I do not always think it is fair but I still feel the squeeze of the indictment. Woe is me…

Holding Christ as Lord in my life may just bring about a breaking of fellowship. But holding Christ as Lord is not simply a passion but the very passion needed for relationship with God. Might it be the backlash of the eternal that we are feeling? Is it perhaps a spiritual pressure that we are encountering? Well if was purely that then that would be something we could handle. But we have this blended with a problem of being associated with those who are actually distasteful as followers of Christ. Some of the sheep stink and causes us all to have a slight odor. How does our favorite pastime look now?

But is it a first world problem to say you only have time for the things that interest you? That we only make time for the things that bring you joy? No that is the language of someone who is too busy, or selfish. Does everybody have the time to focus on their fancies? So what should my time look like? How much should I be invested in my interests and how much should that lead me to tell people about them? This is that evangelism question. If I do not share everything that I love, does that mean I do not really love them? Sometimes I think this kind of guilt can come across from a pulpit with regards to sharing our faith.

Is God the most interesting person ever? Well yes, then why don’t you share more sinner?!! Or rather than go there, is this really about places of honor, the word Holy is about uniqueness, specialness. In other words does God have to take up the most amount of effort and time per-capita or is it that he is to placed in the position of most honor? I am leaning towards the latter but things that hold the highest position of honor such as the “Holy” tend to hold the most gravitas in our lives. These do carry the weight of more of our focus but, not necessarily the most time. Jobs will always take large amounts of our times, but this may simply be a means to a greater end: provision for what we do care about. This is why it is said that if can work in your passion or earn a living investing in what is “holy” to you, that this is how you find life most rewarding. What if my job is not my favorite, do the mundane tasks take away from my passions?

Satisfaction also comes from working with skill. If you possess the skills to pay the bills then when making the payment it tends to be little bit more enjoyable. If you skillfully practice your art then the payoff is grander. This is why your job doesn’t necessarily matter. This is why not everybody has to be a pastor for instance. I can hold Christ as holy in my heart while being a builder. I can hold Christ holy in my heart as a radioman. I can hold Christ as holy in my heart while working at Chuck E. Cheese. Being a pastor does not make me a better Christian or more of a zealous Christ follower, necessarily. Being a Pastor does not mean I am the best evangelist. It does however position me in a such a way to skillfully practice it and thus support my zeal.

For example, study cannot replace prayer. But study can intensify prayer. My job as a pastor does not give me a pass at relationship with God. This is still something that I have to invest in, I guess the only difference is my job will be visibly affected if I do not seek his face. This is something we all have to do wherever we are in life. Anyone can have passion for God in any field of work. They should. I don’t think it means that every post on Facebook is a reminder that we are Christian and everything that comes out of our mouths is Jesus. But like posting pictures of our latest meal every interaction can be a testimony to whom it is we are in relationship with.

So I ask does God have our undivided attention? Or do our passions digress? Of course they do. But does our digression take away from the main thing which is God? Or might our passions be avenues that God intends for us to bring him glory in ways that perhaps someone else can not? Evangelism is not running around screaming Jesus at everyone like if you were attending your favorite sports match, but it is living around people being prepared to answer for the hope that resides within you.

Because your hope should shine forth, your faith should shine forth, your smile should shine forth. That is passion, that is evangelism.

Remember: In whatever you do, do as unto the Lord.

23Whatever you do, work at it with your whole being, for the Lord and not for men, 24because you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as your reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving. (Colossians 3)

Rendering service with a good will as to the Lord and not to man, (Ephesians 6:7)

Wherever you are in life make him Lord. Whatever you do in life make him Lord. Whoever you meet in life display him as Lord. This is evangelism and this is sharing your passion. The good thing about God is while he may bring scorn in some circles, he is the most rewarding passion to invest in.

thanks

 

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