Posts Tagged 'zeal'

Being Zealous

JESUS SPEAKING

Now the Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And he found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers doing business. When he had made a whip of cords, he drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers money and overturned the tables. And he said to those who sold doves, “Take these things away! Do not make my Father’s house a house of merchandise!” Then the disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house has eaten me up” (John 2: 13 – 17.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

Upon entering the temple, Jesus was filled with righteous indignation; a divine passion that prompted Him to chase away the schemers who were abusing God’s Holy dwelling for their own selfish purposes. The disciples observed Christ’s zealous behavior; properly ascribing his actions to a messianic prophecy which states, “Zeal for Your House has eaten Me up” (Psalm 69: 9.) The textbook definition of zeal is, “a great energy or enthusiasm that accompanies the pursuit of a cause or an objective.” Passion and Zeal concerning the accomplishment of God’s will is therefore an indelible characteristic of genuine faith.

At present, there exists one striking contrast between the airplane and every other form of locomotion. The horse and wagon, the automobile, the bicycle, the locomotive, the speedboat, and the great battleship, can all come to a stand still without danger; and they can all reverse their engines, or their power and go backward. But the engine of an airplane has no reverse. It can’t back up. It dare not stand still either. If it loses its momentum and forward drive, then it will crash. The only safety for an airplane resides within its forward and upward motion. Similarly, the only safe direction for a Christian to take is forward and upward. If we stop, or even slip and begin to go backward, we will find ourselves in grave danger.

In life, the number of things that can elicit our zeal is almost endless. Many today are zealous for a political party, a governmental ideology, a sports team, a career, an individual or relationship, a collection of some kind, gaming, entertainment, travel, an alternative lifestyle, or a social cause, to name just a few. Yet as Christians, the furtherance of the gospel must be our preeminent passion; we must move forward and upward; aiming to accomplish the work of God in this place. Through our words and our deeds many can come to know God and receive salvation.

“Lord Heavenly Father, our lives are filled with distractions; things that can compete with our zeal for Your Son and His coming Kingdom. Help us, that we might remain focused on the things that truly matter; the eternal endeavors which are pleasing to You. May we be Your people, and may we never stop accomplishing Your will upon this Earth. We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name. Amen.” God bless all of you!

The Salt of the Earth

JESUS SPEAKING

   “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it become salty again?  It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men” (Mathew 5: 13.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

   In ancient time’s salt was a very important commodity used to preserve meat; it was also a common ingredient included in many medicinal remedies.  And yet despite its numerous applications, salt was most often utilized to flavor foods; a tiny pinch and an otherwise bland dish would become rather tasty.  In this parable, Jesus likens every believer to salt; those who remain flavorful are those who continue to fulfill their primary purpose; these individuals consistently seek to serve their fellows, love others, and give to those in need.  Unfortunately, some who start out strong in the faith will eventually lose their saltiness and become self-centered and ungodly; the zeal that once drove them to accomplish good words fades away. If we begin serving ourselves and not others, our usefulness to God will become compromised.

   The statue of liberty is one of America’s most widely recognizable icons; an enduring symbol of freedom to all nations.  And yet ‘Lady Liberty’ has changed considerably over the years.  On the day of her dedication in 1886, her polished copper surface was a vibrant spectacle of orange and bronze; a truly marvelous sight to behold.  However, when copper interacts with the atmosphere it corrodes; and over time, her shiny exterior has grown dull, muted, and green.  The Statue of Liberty is still a magnificent example of ingenuity and craftsmanship; and yet she is no longer as magnificent as she was on the day of her dedication.

  Similarly, numerous Christians dedicate themselves to Jesus Christ, and initially they shine quite brilliantly.  Their zeal for what is good and their desire to spread the gospel is unparalleled.  As they serve, the love of The Lord is manifest in them; drawing others toward God.  Sadly however, over time, as other things displace their faith, selfishness arises; reigning in their hearts.  They become dull and muted; incapable of being used to accomplish God’s work.  May we never grow dull; may we continually put the Lord first in everything we do; and may we tirelessly strive to accomplish His will in this world.

   “Heavenly Father, fill us with Your Holy Spirit and give us opportunities to lovingly serve others.  We yearn to be pleasing to You in all things; that you might use us to further Your Kingdom.  May we always be zealous and flavorful; and may we never grow dull.  If we have turned from Your path, convict us and correct us.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you!

The Salt of the Earth

JESUS SPEAKING

          “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it become salty again?  It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men” (Mathew 5: 13.)

INSPIRED THOUGHTS

          In ancient time’s salt was a very important commodity, used to preserve meats; it was also a common ingredient included in many medicinal remedies.  However, despite its numerous applications, salt was most often employed to flavor foods; just a tiny pinch and an otherwise bland dish would become rather tasty.  In this parable Jesus likens every believer to salt; those who remain flavorful are those who continue to fulfill their primary purpose; such individuals consistently serve their fellows, love others, and give to those in need.  Unfortunately, many who start out strong in the faith eventually lose their saltiness and become self-centered and ungodly; they no longer possess the zeal to accomplish good works.  By serving themselves and not others, they become useless to God.

          The statue of liberty is one of America’s most widely recognizable icons; an enduring symbol of freedom to all nations.  And yet ‘Lady Liberty’ has changed a great deal over the years.  On the day of her dedication in 1886, her polished copper surface was a vibrant spectacle of orange and bronze; a truly marvelous sight to behold.  Sadly, when copper interacts with the atmosphere it corrodes; and over time, her shiny exterior has grown dull, muted, and green.  The Statue of Liberty is still a magnificent example of ingenuity and craftsmanship; however, she is no longer as marvelous as she once was on the day of her dedication.

          Similarly, many Christians dedicate themselves to Jesus Christ, and initially they shine quite brilliantly.  Their zeal for what is good and their desire to spread the gospel is unparalleled.  As they serve, the love of The Lord is manifest in them; drawing others toward God.  Sadly, over time, as other things displace their faith, selfishness begins to reign in their hearts.  They become dull and muted; such individuals are rendered useless to God.  May we never grow dull; may we continually put the Lord first in all that we do; and may we tirelessly strive to accomplish His will in this place.

          “Heavenly Father, fill us with Your Holy Spirit.  Give us opportunities to lovingly serve others.  We desire to be pleasing to You in all things; use us to further Your Kingdom.  May we always be zealous and flavorful; and may we never grow dull.  If we have turned away, please convict us and correct us.  We love You Father, we praise You, and we thank You, and we ask and pray all of these things, according to Your will, in Jesus Christ’s name.  Amen.”  God bless all of you.


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