There have been times in my life where I would remember the bright eyed, natural haired, 21-year old version of me and mourn the way she loved Jesus.
Didn’t think I’d go there did ya. 😉
Truthfully, when I was first saved in high school, it took a while for the passion for Christ to settle into my heart. It took a community obsessed with hanging out a church, a Christian sorority I could actually be vulnerable with and lots of hard pressed, not so fun, cries during those rough moments to get to a place where I was excited about my faith. But once I hit the peak of that mountain, the joy and pure bliss was electric. I was on a spiritual high and felt like a fortress. It was similar to the honeymoon phase of a relationship; all I wanted was God and I craved to know more.
But, as expected, that honeymoon phase slowly wilted and I was met with the tougher fate; growing a passion for Christ outside of my personal hype.
I’ve mentioned before, my 25th year was a true quarter life crisis that seeped into my 26th year. I felt so far removed from what I thought God called me to be, I struggled to find my place among my group of friends, and my home situation was nowhere near the stuff of fairytales. As a result, my faith became monotonous and I entered what I like to call my “rebellious” phase (which made perfect sense since I never really went through that phase in high school). I didn’t know where to go. I didn’t know who to turn to. I couldn’t let everyone know how lukewarm my heart had grown and how bitter my thoughts became. So instead, I lived my life doing the things I never “got” to do as a church leader. I still loved Christ and in theory, still served him.
After a while, the empty ringing of a dry heart hit me. Partying at a rooftop bar just to prove how “chill” I was, lost all its attraction. The tightrope I mentally walked just so I could say I wasn’t “technically wrong” created tension that I couldn’t maintain.
One Saturday night, while lying face up in my bed and reminiscing about the past year, it dawned on me; I had lost my passion for God and anything having to do with Him. In the next split moment, I realized that although I didn’t currently want Him or feel compelled to change, I wanted to want to. I wanted to be that girl who missed God when she grew distant. I wanted those Holy Spirit driven ques for whenever I had to decided not to keep a commitment. I wanted to love spending time reading pages of His book and to get stuck on one verse then rush to write every thought swirling in my head in a colorful green pen in my unlined notebook. I wanted to grow passionate. I wanted to want the Lord.
And so, similar to an inchworm, bit by bit I felt myself begin draw closer again to my best friend. And during that slow 8-month process, I found myself reiterating these truths:
And let God interrupt me.
For 8 months I practiced listening again before I even had the desire to listen. I practiced letting God interrupt my busiest moments, even in the middle of a work day. I practiced breathing when the feeling of anxiety formed that small, almost ticklish, ball inside my chest that demanded my body to retreat. And day by day, in the smallest actions (not some one-shot extravagant come to Jesus moment like I had hoped lol) He met me there and I began to recognize Him again. Like distant friends, I began to remember what He was like and how close he used to feel until one day, while driving to work after spending a quick 15 minutes reading about my friend, I felt the passion again.
This time it wasn’t as loud or as extravagant as it was back in my early twenties. This time, it was a subtle little flutter in my heart and big thankful tears. This time, passion was the deep hum in the back of my throat when something I heard resounded with me. This time, it was the understanding and empathy tucked into my heart for all the other Christians fighting their way back. This time it was different.
The point is, if you’ve lost your passion, can’t bring yourself to go to church or join a group but can’t figure out why, find yourself acting like everyone but yourself, and lay on your bed waiting for a “want to,” just know, you are not alone.
You’re never more than a few slow earned inches away from discovering new passion.