Summary: Passion is a difference maker!
Passion is a difference maker. It’s the fuel that mobilizes warriors to rush to battle, motivates scientist to find new cures, moves athletes to train, and sustains people like you and I to reach goals as we go through life. Passionate people are willing to do whatever it takes…willing to make sacrifices for whatever their heart passionately beats for. And our hearts beat for a lot of different things.
Sports / Movies / Tv Shows / Music / Fashion…the kinds of clothes we wear / Food / Cars / Politics / Family / Causes / etc…
We were created with the ability to be passionate. Passion has nothing to do with age. Passion has nothing to do with personality. You do not have to be an extrovert to be passionate about something or someone. Every single one of us…were born with a God-given sense of passion.
The most passionate people in town ought to be the people of God!
Romans 12:11 (NIV) - “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.”
Zeal is just another word for enthusiasm…for passion.
The word “fervor”…It’s translated from the Greek word, “Cognate,” which means: to bubble over…literally…boiling over with interest or desire. Romans 12:11 is literally saying that our spiritual passion should be boiling hot! Bubbling over!
Romans 12:11 (CEB) - “Don’t hesistate to be enthusiastic…be on fire in the Spirit as you serve the Lord.”
Romans 12:11 (NLT) - “Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.”
Romans 12:11 (TPT) - “Be enthusiastic to serve the Lord, keeping your passion toward Him boiling hot! Radiate with the glow of the Holy Spirit and let Him fill you with excitement as you serve Him.”
This is how we’re supposed to live!
Jesus promised in John 7:38 that, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water!” That’s a life of passion!
God designed and He desires for you and I to Stay Passionate!
So…let’s make a few observations regarding passion. (zeal, fervor, enthusiasm):
(1) Passion isn’t Passive -
Passive is defined as: lacking in energy or will. Motionless. Idle. Uninvolved. Disinterested.
You can’t be enthusiastically passive. It’s Active / Expressed / Tangible / Visible / Evident / On Display / It stands for something / It draws a definite line in the sand
(2) Passion Can Be Lost - We all know this to be true…and we may look at this in greater detail in the future…but for today…let me give you a visual picture of what often happens:
Example: Helium Balloons. (I brought in several helium balloons and held them as I spoke at this point.) The balloons represent us when we are full of passion. (At this point I let them go and they shot up to the ceiling.) Over time…probably by the next morning…these same balloons would fall to the floor. Their “lift” wouldn’t last. We are very similar.
(3) Passion Can Be Misdirected -
Romans 10:2, Paul is writing about his love for the people of Israel and describing them, he writes, “I know what enthusiasm they have for God, but it is misdirected zeal.”
Philippians 3:6 - Writing of his own past, Paul says, “I was so zealous that I harshly persecuted the church.”
History is filled with misdirected passion. Misdirected passion only causes a mess.
(4) Passion is a Stimulus -
Stimulus: A shot in the arm, fuel, propellent, spur, motivator
It energizes you - The Stanford Research Institute as well as The Harvard Research Center discovered that 15% of a person’s success in life is determined by knowledge compared to 85% being determined by their attitude…their level of passion.
The opposite of passion / enthusiasm is apathy. Apathy never energized anyone. On the contrary…it drains. Passion delivers a power packing punch! It propels a person as they pursue their purpose. It gets you up in the morning…it keeps you working hard when the results aren’t what you’d hoped…it’s what has the power to fill the routine and even the mundain with joy and purpose.
It inspires others - It’s contagious!
Try to imagine Steve Jobs walking out on stage to unveil the iPhone with little or no enthusiasm.
Picture Walt Disney sharing his vision of Disneyland without any passion or enthusiasm.
How would things be different had John F. Kennedy shared his vision of man going to the moon without any energy or excitment?
What would Martin Luther King Jr’s, “I have a dream” speech have accomplished if he’d have delivered it without passion?
2 Corinthians 9:2 - Paul tells the Corinthians church, “I keep boasting to the churches of Macedonia about your passion to give…Your enthusiasm is contagious…it has stirred many of them to do likewise.”
Nobel Prize Winner, Sir Edmond Appleton put it well when he said, “In my work, I would rather have a second class person with enthusiasm than a first class person with apathy.”