Summary: God wants us to love him passionately, with all of our heart. Using Mark 12:30 and Romans 12:11, Pastor Rick looks at a list of passion killers, things that rob us of joy, and teaches us how to reignite our passion for God. The service ends with communion
It’s not only for the difficult times. It’s also for the good times. Human beings were made for relationships. We’re made to live that way. In a prison, when they want to give somebody the ultimate punishment in a prison, where do they put them? They put them in solitary. Solitary confinement. Because we were made to be around other people. That’s how God created and made us. Whether you’re married or single you need relationships with others. Others who are trying to live with passion for God in their lives, to keep that passion for God real in life.
Having been a pastor for a while now, I’ve seen a lot of people continue with their passion for God and a lot of people lose their passion for God. Those that lose their passion for God there’s a predictable pattern. You can see it the same way almost every time. I’ll tell you where the pattern begins. The first thing that happens is the person stops coming to church. I’m not talking about the ritual of coming to church. I’m talking about they draw back from the relationships of being around other believers. There’s a lot of reasons we tell ourselves that’s ok. Summer... I’ll watch it on the internet... I’ve got other things to do... I’ll get back to it soon... but whatever the reason you start not spending time with other people who have a desire to have passion for God.
The next thing that always happens is your heart starts to turn cold. You start to feel far from God. You start to feel like God’s far from you. What you really need is to be around other people who can warm up the love that you have for God in your life. It’s a need in all of us to be around other people to have this passion for God. If you have no inspiring contact with other believers your heart wills grow cold. It’s inevitable.
Greg Lauri who’s going to be with us next week speaking, was recently interviewing one of the women from the Survivor show, a Christian woman. She’d gone on the show and been told she could bring five things to the island or wherever they were. She said, one of them I want to bring is a Bible. They said, "No, you can’t bring a Bible. Somebody already did that. You’ve got to bring something different." So she went to this island without a Bible, with no Christian relationships and watched what happened to her life. She fell right off the table. Her character began to change, the way she talked, the kind of words she used, the ugly words she used. The attitudes she had towards others, the jealousy, the hatred. All of it immediately came into her life. She told Greg, "I didn’t realize how weak I really was."
I’ll admit it. I’m weak. I’ll admit it. I need relationships with other believers to grow. For better or for worse the only reason I’ve grown as a believer is because I’ve been around other people who are growing as believers. That’s how God made all of us. We need relationships in order to grow. That’s what makes it happen.
Hebrews 10:24-25 "Let us consider how we may spur one another on towards love and good deeds. Let’s not give up meeting together and let us encourage one another."