"Never let the fire in your heart go out. Keep it alive. Serve the Lord. When you hope, be joyful. When you suffer, be patient. When you pray, be faithful. Share with God's people who are in need. Welcome others into your homes."
Many of us can remember a time when we first had the revelation penetrate our hearts. Your reaction may have been something like this-
"Jesus died for me? He loves me? The man that breathed the stars into existence risked it all for me?"
At least that is how it was when I first encountered Christ.
There was an excitement in the very pit of my soul and I couldn't go anywhere without bringing up God's love. It was so magnificent, so extravagant, so mind-blowing, that I wanted the whole wide world to know the news. And that's exactly what I went off to do.
Every Friday afternoon I would hang out at a train station with older women and men from my church, hand out tracts, and spread the Gospel. I had a date with Jesus at least twice a week, and I actually would get butterflies. I blasted worship in my ears every chance I got, and worshipped my heart out, on my knees, every Sunday morning.
But as I prepared for my future and got ready to leave for college, I began to put Jesus on my list of to-do's.. and He didn't always make it to the top of the list. As I got into a routine at my new college, though it was a Christian school, I began to realize that it was sorta the norm. As I spoke to people about my struggle, some assured me that they at one point too had a fire, and that theirs had gone out- but they still loved Jesus- they just weren't as passionate- and that it was okay.
But my spirit couldn't agree. I knew something was wrong and I was terrified. I didn't want to be lukewarm- I wanted to be so hot that the world knew I was an ambassador of the King. I wanted to know that if I was arrested for being a Christian, the authorities would have enough evidence to convict me. I wanted my passion for him back.
Though I had the desire, I didn't have enough obedience and drive to actually carry it out. I catered to what some people at my school had said and rested in the fact that maybe it was normal. Maybe it was just fine.
At Christian schools you are bound to find a lot of complacency, but the good thing about those schools as well is that you are surrounded by well seasoned staff that put their trust in Jesus, and always circle back to the importance of asking how you are spiritually.
So after conviction, I began to open my bible again and realized something, very important.
and I need you to realize it too.
Trusting your feelings can be one of the most dangerous things you could ever do. They come, and they go. But His word is ever lasting. We live in a society of instant gratification and when we have a certain emotion- we obey our hearts, though they are deceitful. Thinking it is okay to lose your fire is wrong- thinking you may have lost your salvation is wrong- thinking that being lukewarm is normal is wrong.
Look at what Jesus says:
"My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life and no one can snatch them out of my hand." John 10:27-28
Any distance you feel between you & God is because you moved, not Him. So, you want to close the space? Get back to the giddiness of being in love with the Man with eyes like fire? How, right?
1.) Read the Word even when your flesh screams NO: Start with these verses- John 15:4, Psalm 40:1-2, Psalm 144:7, Psalm 147:3, Zephaniah 3:17. They should convict you, captivate you, and motivate you. Read them slowly, word by word, and allow God to plaster them into your heart. If you truly feel no change, take a break, get on your knees, and plead to the Lord to give you a desire for Him. He WANTS to answer that prayer.
2.) Have a date night with Jesus once a week: No, not kidding. Dress up. Plan your meal around a sermon. Have prayer time. Adoration time. Lift your hands. Dance. Journal. Snuggle in His comfort. Invest in the most important relationship of your life. Shut off your phone and make an intentional effort to just solely focus on Christ. Begin investing in this sacred bond, and you will begin to see and feel it flourish.
3.) Make a written commitment to Him and hang it where you will always see it: Make a promise to yourself to stop obeying the complacent desires of your heart and to solely obey the Holy Spirit, even when you're tired, worn out, or just "not feelin' it". Make the commitment today. You never know when Jesus is going to come back, and you need to be prepared. Another reason to be obedient and immersed in God is if you are saved, you will want to be close to God and you will want to follow him. If you are in constant dryness and sadness, make sure you obtain assurance of your salvation by talking with a mentor.
Remember, seasons don't last forever. You will get through this and come out more on FIRE than ever.