Over the years, there have been several things that have stuck in my mind from the pages of God's word. One of them is the word fervent. It is used several places in the NASB translation, and I am always blessed when I see it used in the lives of people.
It's a concept I think we can always use a little more of in our lives. The intended idea of fervent in the Greek is one of stretching out to a maximum limit and an intention that is without ceasing. The ultimate example of this can be found in Luke 22:44, "And being in agony He (Jesus) was praying very fervently; and His sweat became like drops of blood, falling down upon the ground." Let me ask you... when was the last time any of us prayed so fervently that we even perspired, let alone sweat so profusely that it dripped to the ground like blood running off our heads?!?
Fervent comes up only a few other places in the New Testament and one of them is in my favorite passage in the Bible: Romans 12:9-21. Verse 11 says, "not lagging behind in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord;" The thought here is to be continually seeking to serve God from a place of perpetual/constant growth in the spirit. And let us not forget that the context for this verse is serving others in love.
Which brings me to my last reference today. 1 Peter 1:22, " Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, for you have been born again not of a seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God. (verse 23 added for emphasis)" Love is one of our greatest assets and we should desire to use it maximally in every facet of our day.
May we be a people who seek to live out our fervent spiritual life - seeking ways to live it out maximally, rather than figuring out what the minimum is that we could get away with and still be considered righteous. May we be a people who stretch out and fervently love others as Jesus did on the cross.
Grace, Opportunity, Dignity
Serving through love and laughter is a great way to live.