Having passion is different than having strong emotion. Though I may have emotions connected to my passion, as a Christian, my emotions shouldn’t totally fuel my passion. Godly passion is focus and direction, whether emotions are involved or not. I can appear to be without strong emotion yet still have deep passion, but I don’t necessarily have passion just because I’m brimming with emotions.
Godly Passion or Just Emotion
I know many who believe they are deeply passionate people. But the litmus test of whether it is godly passion or just emotionalism is if they evidence a honed focus on the Lord or just emotional drama. Any of us can be filled with drama. I can be dramatic and know quite a few drama queens. But where the rubber meets the road is what we do with all that dramatic emotional energy.
Any of us can teem with excitement, but only Christ is able to reign over our emotions and direct them into heavenly passion. I can be passionate about winning something, or have human passion for achieving some significant feat, or just be passionate to be someone great, but divine passion is all about focusing on and listening to the King of Glory. Divine passion is the Life of Christ.
In my recent posts, I have been circling around the subject of the art of listening. I have shown that true silence is not an exercise in remaining quiet but the art of listening. I also revealed that whenever we define circumstances apart from God, we are in pride. And this is why our direction and focus have to be centered on the Lord Jesus. When I direct my ear to hear His Voice, then I can listen to Him with my heart. If this hearing happens to stir up strong emotions, which inevitably it can, great. But the key is having God-fueled passion stemming from my honed focus and attention on Jesus and His Will.
Passionate For His Life
Another side of this is that without my mind and spirit being focused, I can’t live in the exchanged Life. Christ can’t be my life if I am continually misdirected and unfocused. Jesus won’t override my will to live my own life. Only when He is my focal point can I engage His passion.
Listening involves focus and attention. When I have passion to follow the Lord’s pursuit, then it’s because Jesus has stirred it up in my heart. Then I am in divine passion. This forgoes all simple emotional endeavors and becomes Life with purpose. With a listening ear and divine passion born of being focused on Christ, I become an arrow in His quiver. He can aim and shoot me without fear of misfiring. So while the blaze coming off me might contain emotions, the sureness of my life is the divine passion found in the Life of Christ. Again, I am not saying that emotions are bad; they’re not. But I can’t let them dictate my course. That would just be flesh, and ultimately futile.