Summary: This Sermon is about allowing God’s word to flow into our lives causing our faith to increase.
"My Heart's Desire" (Romans 10:1-14)
-Rev. A. Torrence, Pastor
Cross of Life Lutheran Church
The one characteristic that I admired about the apostle Paul is his sense of passion. Paul was man of passion. What ever he set his mind to do, Paul was earnest enough to bring it to reality with fervor. Even when he was doing wrong – he had passion. Before his Damascus experience, he was passionate about persecuting the Christians and stumping out this Christ threat. When Christ opened his eyes and turned his heart around, he began to preach with passion. When he was put in prison, and couldn’t preach anymore, he wrote with passion. Paul was a man of passion. And in this opening verse, he tells us what that passion is. His heart’s desire was the salvation of his own people – the Jews. Paul was a Jew but his ministry was strongest towards the Gentiles. Now, we must understand that for was Jew to have any dealing with those outside their faith was considered blasphemous. The Gentiles were considered un-cleaned, unsaved, and unchurched; yet, Paul had a passion that all men, regardless of race, culture, gender, age, and past, would be saved.
Just think about the frustration that must have existed in his heart as he would preach to strangers, social outcasts, the downtrodden and the forgotten, and witness thousands coming to Christ but those in his own family, his own culture, his own race – those who he grew up with, work with, and probably live with – would not share his passion for Christ. I mean, some of us know about that. We know what it is to wake every Sunday, get dress for church and live our spouses at Bedside Baptist. We know what it is to be saved and husbands are not saved, wives are not saved, and children are not saved. Our hearts desire is just like Paul’s, for them to be saved. Because, deep down inside our hearts, we do not want them to be left behind, like those in the book we are reading. Paul must have had a heart of frustration. Folks were being saved, healed, and blessed all around him; yet, because of their hard hearts, his own people were not benefiting. Paul was following his passion for ministry but his family and friends did not support it.
Have you ever been excited about something and those around just did not seem to care. I mean, I know the frustration I get when I am passionate about ministries and ideas, and the people around me don’t see it, don’t grasp it, and don’t share it. I know what it is to be excited about mentoring teenage mothers or teaching parenting skills and have folks tell you, Pastor-that’s just not for me. I know what it is to see God moving around you and in you, and all you want is for others to experience what you experience. I know the frustration of knowing what God can do for others because I’ve seen it. I lived it. I experienced it and yet, I am still surround by folks who have zeal for God but not according to knowledge. I know what it is to be surround with people desiring to do things their own way and not God’s way. I know what it is to see folks caught up in doing things right rather than doing the right thing. Doing things right to them is doing it out of tradition and ritual. We have to do it this way because we’ve always done it like this. I don’t know about you but I can relate to Paul having a heart desire to see his people saved.