Last week as I was typing my blog I kept hearing the word, “passion,” partially because of the picture I found on Unsplash (used for todays post). I started asking myself, “What is your passion?” and “Where do my passions lead me?”
When I looked for verses containing the word, “passion,” I found that most are about fleshly desires. Here are a few:
Romans 7:5 For when we were living according to our old nature, the passions connected with sins worked through the Torah in our various parts, with the result that we bore fruit for death. (CJB)
Galatians 5:24 Moreover, those who belong to the Messiah Yeshua have put their old nature to death on the stake, along with its passions and desires. (CJB)
2 Timothy 4:3-4 For the time is coming when people will not have patience for sound teaching, but will cater to their passions and gather around themselves teachers who say whatever their ears itch to hear. Yes, they will stop listening to the truth, but will turn aside to follow myths. (CJB)
When I began searching for these verses, I came across an article written January 18, 2015 by Jack Wellman on a site called patheos.com. Here is an interesting quote from his blog:
“What is Passion?
The word passion originates from the Latin word “passio” which is closely related to the Greek root “path” meaning “to suffer.” When this word is applied to the mind, it can relate to the mind being controlled by emotion which we will see in later verses. This is not just a weak emotion but a very powerful one. Passion can be good and bad, sinful and righteous and can certainly be overwhelming and override rationality. When Paul wrote that God gave them up to their (sinful) passions (Rom 1:26) the Greek word “pathos” was used and can mean several things; “an affliction of the mind, emotions,” and “a feeling which the mind suffers” so the word passion can swing in many different areas but almost always is extremely intense.”
I appreciate the fact that this statement says that passion can be good and bad, sinful and righteous. I fully believe this is true. We have passions that are negative for us, and (hopefully) passions that are positive for us. The key is keeping things in balance.
Passions, even “positive” ones, when they are overwhelming, can “override rationality.” Since passion usually implies something that is “extremely intense,” we must be careful and mindful about what where our passions lie.
To put this into perspective, think about working out. Lifting weights, running, swimming etc… whatever someone finds that works for an individual to bring health to his/her body, if done too often and with too much “passion” can actually harm the person. The same thing can happen with dieting. People can become overly passionate about losing weight and they harm their bodies.
Let us think about passion in the realm of sharing the Good News and LOVE of Christ. Have you ever known someone that is shy and never speaks about it? Maybe this frustrates you because you believe he has no passion about what God has done for him. There are also people who are so zealous for the Word of God that they turn people off because they are overly passionate and “so heavenly minded they are no earthly good.”
Even with sharing the Word of God and HIS TRUTH, we must be careful that we do not become so intense that we hinder the process of bringing people into a relationship with their Messiah. It is my belief that Jesus never forced Himself on anyone. He sat down to have a conversation with someone and started a relationship that showed love and mercy. That is what drew His followers to Him. He was PASSIONATE about loving people.
The quote on the picture says, “Passion led us here.” It made me stop and think about where my passions have led me. Some have blessed me, some have caused pain. Some might be for a season, and then need to be released.
If your passions are dragging you down, it is time to look into something new. All of the verses above clearly show us that passions that are connected to sin or earthly pleasures will bring fruit for death. We are to set aside our old nature. We are not to cater to our fleshly passions and desires.
If we are PATIENT and FOCUSED and desiring TRUTH, those passions will bring LIFE and ABUNDANT fruit. Fruit that will last! If we are sharing HIS Truth with those around us, and LISTENING to Holy Spirit, than we will share HIS passion and love.
Where do your passions lead you? Do they lead you closer to the Creator and Father who loves you? Do they bring HOPE and JOY into your life? Do they draw others into a stronger relationship with Him?
Passions are not bad, just make sure they are leading you to HIM. His desire is for you to have LIFE and LIFE more abundant, and that happens when HE is in control.
When we come to the realization that PASSIONS focused on HIM bring healing and peace, than we can find REST in Him. We will RESTORE ourselves to Him. We are then REFRESHED to walk forward day to day.
Love and blessings,