Godly Zeal Or Passion 


How do we differentiate between fleshly lust and Godly zeal or passion? 

  Lusts crave to receive for selfish pleasure. Zeal or Godly passion longs to give for the pleasure of God and for the benefit of others. Both will satisfy, one temporarily, the other eternally. One seeks to escape suffering, the other is willing to suffer for the sake of the beloved.

The lust of the flesh and eyes and the pride of life will devour life and leave everyone involved forlorn and famished. They are born of the fall of man and are devoid of love or life. 

They are neither sanctioned by man nor sanctified by God. 

  They are identified by unquenchable craving; they have no concern for the benefit of others. The only relief from these demons comes through confession and repentance.

Godly zeal or passion is altogether different; it always blesses all those involved. It rejoices the heart of God and man both. It inspires and gives vision; it refreshes; it is life giving. It is born of God and has eternity and eternal life in mind. It is full of hope and joy. It is fueled by love. It is a primary characteristic of God himself
 Our maker is ardently concerned that his kingdom be established. All his ministers must share in this heart rending suffering. It purifies and sanctifies all who come into its presence; it burns away all lesser forces of nature. It is quiet but intense. It must be sought; it is a gift and must be cherished as such.

Our God given task is to redeem our selfish desires for his selfless heart. Agape or selfless love is the goal. It cannot be obtained by purchase or diligent effort; it must be bestowed as a gracious gift, and it must be cherished and nourished. It grows stronger over time, if permitted. It is the province of heaven, Our Father’s heart and mind, the inheritance of all his children.
                  ~ Brad Heilhecker 

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Crown Your Efforts With Success


In everything you do, put God first, and He will direct you and crown your efforts with success.~ Proverbs 3:6 

I have seen this verse many times. It was one of my verses from my dreams last night and I almost skimmed right over the word and lesson God was trying to convey to me.  

God has been speaking to me for almost a year that I should be intentionally focusing and living Christ first- Christ center; In everything! 

It is not always easy living this way because the world pulls and tugs at us to distract us.  

Being in my second fast in May and removing many distractions and intentionally trying to keep Christ first and practice uncomfortable obedience,was hard.  

Here are some things I learned….

 

God will ask you to change your thinking, clear out warped perceptions, bring you out of your comfort zone, have you say no to some good things to make room for greater things.

He will have you learn to wait, trust, cling to Him. He will ask us to be bolder and braver and not sugar coat or withhold back anything because of fear. 

 He will ask us to remove, decline, and obey him in some pretty hard things while he is helping us get rid of our fleshly behaviors.  We won’t always understand what He reveals, but that is where Trust and Faith are built. 

It is such a different way to live when we stop focusing on the world and our flesh and filter everything by – is it Christ honoring? Is Christ in the center of this? Is Christ first place?  Am I being Obedient? 
When we obey Christ in everything-what God views as a success- may not be what others see. 
So through this verse God showed me:

What the world may view as success or even what I can view as success, is sometimes the exact opposite of what God views as success
The image today is the one of the beauty queen blunder where Steve Harvey announced in error the wrong winner and on a very public stage the crown was removed from one and placed on the real winner.  

Talk about Awkward! 

I actually saw the interview with the host Steve Harvey and the actual winner. It was really sad how the public reacted so ugly to a simple human error. People were calling for boycotts, some got death threats, the real winner couldn’t enjoy her success because of the threats of angry people and had to go into hiding.  

What could have been a life lesson for many- was missed in all the anger and resentments -so they don’t ever see the lesson.  
So it is with us, We can miss many life lessons because of anger, judgement, offense,negative influences, resentments, criticisms and fear.  

Those things have a way of clouding our views.  We won’t be able to see or hear clearly when those things get in the way. 

So always put God first! 
Do what is right.  Do what God says to do.  Don’t let the world change you- let the Word change you. 

If we keep God first and center, He will direct us and crown our efforts with success, even if the world doesn’t see the success in the situation.  
       ~XXOO Michelle Bollom