- What is this BURNING I feel in my chest?
- Why are my teeth clinched and my fingers balled into a fist? Is this a brutal, but necessary, surgery? Or is it a brutal, but avoidable, violation?
- Is this a bullet being removed to save my life or is someone looking for an internal organ to sell on the black market?
- Is this the what it feels like to give up my pride? Or is this the sinister, sinking feeling that follows the surrendering of my passion?
Of course, Pride and Passion are so very different. Passion leads to serving others and Pride leads to serving self. Giving up either feels the same, even if the results are different. Loosing Pride creates dependence on God, losing Passion creates an apathetic life.
The world is filled with fuel for the fire of pride: “Look at what I have done! This is what I deserve! Here is where I am great!”
The world is also filled with leeches that drain passion’s power: “You are no good! You have no value! Know your place, don’t step out of line! Be afraid and be little!”
I have seen the passion fade, and there are few things more terrible than apathy. I have seen the sprinters stop running. Giving up their joy in order to take a seat on the sideline. It is not long before they roll over, and play dead or even just simply be dead.
Giving up pride is painful. Of course, it’s the only path to spiritual growth, to intimacy with God. Humility frees us up to stop managing our sin, accept grace, and move forward with trust and surrender.
These feelings and thoughts are the same, (at least they are for me): surrendering pride and giving up passion. Am I enduring hardship or caving in? Am I giving my heart to God or selling out my soul?
I have seen the zombies shuffle. The thing I fear most is becoming one. Zombies create more zombies. Administrators create more administration. Zombies can’t create life, and neither can micro-Administrators create leadership.
- When I’ve lost my pride, I feel like lashing out in attack.
- When I’ve lost my passion, I feel like laying down forever.
And perhaps here is where the knot is thickest: maybe loosing pride and passion often happen at the same time. The difference is not in the moment that it happens, but in the moments and days ahead. Which is it that we choose to add back into our hearts, pride or passion?
Perhaps there are times when we loose pride and passion at the same time, and our goal is to restore the passion without puffing back up with pride.
Pride is about receiving glory, being admired, understood, and respected. You can loose these things and still operate out of passion.
When the grinding moments come, step into the pain.
Suffer the indignity if you can stuff serve with the same fire that got you serving in the same place.
Matt McGill blogs a ton about youth ministry over on Love God, Love Students and was gracious enough to let me post these words here on MTDB. Check out his site and be sure to subscribe!