Life of Passion

I have been thinking a lot about my life lately. Perhaps because it's that time of year that people are making resolutions to make some kind of change in their life. I am not one to normally make New Year's Resolutions. Not because I am uninterested in change, or out of fear I will break that which I resolve to change. I think it is more a function of wanting to be flexible enough to make change when change is needed. Nonetheless, I have been thinking about my life, and more precisely the things I am passionate about.

Last Friday I returned from a great two week vacation. It was a welcomed time of catching my breath and pulling away from the busy routine of life. The second half of our time was spent in one of our favorite locations, San Clemente. San Clemente is a great beach town about an hour north of San Diego. We spent most of our time on the beach, soaking in as much sun as we possibly could. San Clemente is all about the beach and all about surfing. Surfing is big there.

As one who grew up in Southern California, I am drawn to the the whole beach/surf scene. I love it! I love the laid back approach to life. I love the sun, the sand, the surf, and what I call the "flip flop lifestyle." As I observed the surfers this last week, I quickly picked up on something that characterizes most all of them - passion. If there was ever a culture of people committed to what they love, it is them. I have always considered myself a fair weather surfer. If I am going to head out into the water, it's going to need to be a warm sunny day with nice water temps. For those committed to surfing, that is far from their approach.

For those that surf, being in the water is of top priority. It comes before just about anything else in life. As I watched them paddle out early each morning, it was obvious. As much as I love the beach and all that comes with it, it is not my passion. I want my life to be characterized as one passionate for the things that are close to the heart of God. As I watched the surfers, I was forced to ask myself, do I have that amount of passion in my life.

As I continued in my reflection, the following words of Christ came to mind...

"Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these." Mark 12:29-31

I want that to be the passion of my life. I want to live a life characterized by my love of God, and love for the world around me; the kind of love that takes everything I got. I can't help but think what life would be like if that was truly the passion of God's people.

My ultimate goal in ministry is to see those God has entrusted to me, loving Him with everything they've got. For when we do that, the second greatest command comes naturally. It's my prayer this year that that is what is seen in me - a life of passion.

How about you? Where do your passions lie? A good question for us to continually keep in front of us.


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