Have You Passion?

(Rev. 3:14-19, Jude 20-21)

Seven years ago, I was working in southern Illinois on an 11 month assignment.  My daughter had been to the International House of Prayer in Kansas City and wanted to visit again.  She flew in from NJ and I drove across Missouri to meet her.  It was my first visit and I had some familiarity with their ministry.  If you are unaware I encourage you to visit their website at ihopkc.  They encourage prayer and worship and have a prayer room that has been continuously focused on Jesus Christ, 24/7 for over 15 years.  During my drive to KC the Lord turned my attention away from myself and toward my daughter.  He said this weekend was about her and not about me.  He was setting me up.

As we sat in the prayer room, I was awakened to a level of the love of Jesus Christ for me I had not known.  This was far beyond what I had experienced before.  We often speak about breakthrough.  We are right and in pursuit of God’s purpose for us when we seek to be free.  Our seeking in itself is a humbling and repentance.  I had real deliverance from fears and self-effacement.  Our enemy will often turn us inward on ourselves.  I experienced the passionate love of Christ for me as part of His bride.  I knew that intimacy that makes one feel like they are the Shunamite of Song of Songs.  I had known this in measure but now I knew it deeply, at a new level.  It was a life changing experience.  It was a fresh beginning of true unity with the Lord’s love and purpose in my life.

It put a fire in me and gave me an intensity I had not known before.  The Lord, by His Spirit, was preparing me for a launch that initiated in 2013.  The year in between saw personal failure in a failed marriage.  It was sad but we saw much grace.  In this life, human failures happen and we must continue to pursue love, His true love.  I learned passion from and for Him.  Jesus Christ Himself carries us through all kinds of loss, including failed relationships.  May God redeem every broken relationship for His name’s sake.  Maintaining His passion is the focus I am learning through this and my continued journey.

How do we maintain the passion?  How did we find it in the first place?  Did we initiate it?  We received Jesus and with that experience we began to know His love for us.  The more we receive that love, the more we love back.  The more time spent in His presence, the more we are joined to Him in experience and the more we learn to move in His purpose.  The fire is His passionate love for us and it flows back to Him the source.  He draws us more and more to Himself.  He is the fire.

Many have found the importance of this prayer, out of the Psalms, “Search me and know me.”  Open to Him and let Him expose all the dark and ugly places still hiding in your soul.  They are offensive to you, and would be to others if exposed.  The more we know His cleansing and find His steadfast love, the more we love Him.  The one who is forgiven much, loves much.  He doesn’t search us to condemn.  He searches to cleanse every stain.  As His refining fire works to burn away our self-centeredness, we find His life in us is revealed.  Christ in us the hope of glory.

Children want to please their parents.  While, with our human natures, we can manipulate our parents, we cannot fool God.  If we come to Him to manipulate we will find frustration.  It can bring us to a tantrum or pity party.  Don’t stay there.  When I have found myself there I cry out and ask God to fix me, save me.  Yes I am saved but still in the process. (Phil. 2:12-13)  And the process is bringing us to rest in Him.  We lose the notion that we of ourselves can please God, our Father.  It is God at work in us to will, and to do for His good pleasure.  The result for us is joy unspeakable and full of glory.  We experience His glory, His pleasure in us.

I repeat what I wrote in my previous post.  It is not time for lethargy and lukewarm living.  We individually need the fire to never go out on the altar of our hearts.  This is another way of saying, be being filled with the Spirit.  When we are allowing His Spirit to fill us, we overflow.  When the fire is burning with passion in our hearts, it is like a fire in our bones and it will come out.  Keep your door, the door of your inner man, the door of your heart open to Him.  He will come in and be your fire.  And most wonderful it is that if we maintain, we experience His continual presence.  That is joy unspeakable.