I love passionate people. I find their energy exciting and full of hope. Their intensity is wonderful. The attention to detail, focus, and obsession are admirable. With time, I have come to appreciate that no matter how intense, energetic, and focused one is, being passionate does not guarantee a successful result.
The Crusaders were passionately convicted, yet ultimately misguided. Ethnic defenders, Rwanda and several other African countries come to mind, are passionate yet often misguided. Truth defenders, cultural, belief systems, and even religious, often act without compassion, love, or a sense of acceptance. Each is passionately convicted of their goals. Intensity, focus, and commitment are often synonymous with their actions.
When I read how “Saul just went wild, devastating the church, entering house after house after house, dragging men and women off to jail,” (Acts 8.3) I know that he was passionately convicted of his actions. I also know that even as he changed his views later that he could not change the results of his first passion.
Today dawns with an unwritten script in your life and mine. I know that tiredness is haunting many lives, including my own. I understand that stress is overwhelming, even to those that have much. I can feel the call to simply chill and let life unfold.
I know that passion is never enough. One must be balanced while being engaged. I know that being and acting alone is a recipe for disaster. In communities, one finds the many are stronger than the individual. One must let others nurture and guide, especially the Spirit.
We are called to be passionate. Embracing compassion is just the beginning. We are called to engage with life. This starts with the relationships we have today. We are called to harmony, accountability, and freedom. This opens up incredible possibilities, uncertainties, and doubts. It is almost too easy to react in fear. You and I will make mistakes, yet it is in acting that we live. You and I will have opportunities to grow; the Spirit will always be willing to help in that process.
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