I know what it is to lose my passionate love for Christ. Maybe you do too.
This last Sunday I preached a message on the American Church being in desperate need for a renewed passion for Jesus.
After the service I was talking with a friend who in essence shared this, “It’s good to realize I’m stuck, I just don’t know how to get unstuck.”
I knew this sentiment well. I’ve been there countless times. Anyone who has known The Lord for a time, knows that we can find ourselves drifting in the current of our lives and suddenly realize we’ve lost our firm footing in The Lord.
We can find encouragement in so many passages of scripture, but let me turn you to Revelation Chapter 2. Here, Christ himself has turned to give a review and instructions to some local churches based on how they’ve followed him. In this passage we can find help and warnings for ourselves in 2015. In Chapter 2, after he speaks of their hard work and patient endurance he write this:
…..4 Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.5 Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.” (Rev. 2:4-5)
Jesus points out that they’ve lost their first love….their ultimate love for Him. They might have reasoned that they loved him, but other things had taken his place. Jesus instructs them and us to do two things when this happens:
1. Repent: This isn’t just asking God to forgive us, if you’ve place your faith in Jesus, your sins have been forgiven. This means turning away from whatever has drawn us away and turning back to him.
2. “Do the things you did at first”: Jesus here gives such profound and wise counsel: Go back to the beginning.
Go back to doing what you did when you loved me most. Go back to our prayer time together, Go back to you reading and soaking up my word, Go back to spending time in worship of me, Go back to sitting with other brothers and sisters that passionately love me. Go back to the beginning.
You say, “Nathan, I might be able to go back to doing this stuff, but I don’t feel what I use to feel.”
Let me remind you what you most likely already know…..this is a walk of faith, not of feelings.
I’ve found that when you lean into these spiritual disciplines (that you know are spiritually healthy), the emotions will follow. Where most people get hung up is waiting on “feeling” like doing it. We rarely will because we’re still draped in this frustrating flesh of ours.
Think back to when your passion for Christ was white hot…..what were you doing in that season? Go back there.
Go back to the beginning.