Looking for experienced others in regaining zeal, passion, vision and direction. How did you/do you get it back?
this is a good question; are you talking just in the spiritual sense or in all of life; finding meaning in the so called ‘unspiritual’ areas of our life such as work?
I really enjoyed Ravi speaking mid last year at the Liberty University. One of the quotes that stuck with me was this:
All relationships can only be defined when your relationship with God has been defined, and that relationship dictates for you your choices in pleasure. One last thought, time is a loan you’ll have to return it one day. Eternity is a gift. God will never take that back from you. Time is a loan, eternity is a gift, take this loan and use it in a way that you can return it to God with a delight in your heart and what he has waiting for you in eternity: Eye has not seen ear has not heard neither has entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for them that love him. determine your goal don’t get distracted find out how to lead that balanced life and never jeopardize the sacred right of another person. you will find pleasure to be fulfilling and the greatest pleasure at his right hand are pleasures forever more learn to bridge the head with the heart in worship and that will bring you the fulfillment for which God has made you.
Here is the full video from youtube
Another message from my other favourite speaker that might inspire you; is from John Lennox, encouraging us to use our time and talents for the Lord.
vimeo.com/278233553 (if you want the vimeo direct URL).
I hope this is a little encouraging…
Thank You so much for the encouraging videos and for taking the time to reach out! blessing to you!
If for you, in what sense are you looking to regain these things? Are you looking to recreate an experience?
If for others, are you asking about how to encourage them through a loss of these things?
Your question really drew me in about trying to recreate an experience. I guess it would be possible that I was unconsciously trying to do that. I was seemingly in a dry season. I couldn’t get my focus. My prayer and study life was suffering…
I was honestly feeling like I was in the middle of the ocean trying to tread water. And I wasn’t sure how much strength I had left to keep above water. Of course these are feelings… but I thought surely someone had experienced something similar and possibly had a word of wisdom in this area.
Thanks for replying. It is helpful to have a little more context on your situation and I’d be curious to hear others’ experiences as well.
I was really struck by how you described a ‘dry season’ in your life…
It reminded me a bit of the parable of the sower [Mark 4, Matt. 13, Luke 8]. Like God had sown some beautiful seed in your heart, but it was feeling like it was either being scorched by the sun, choked by the thorns…or in your case, drowned/washed away by the deluge? What strikes me about that parable is that one of most key elements for the seed is the soil. The soil is what surrounds the seed.
I wonder if what could help is an examination of your ‘soil’? What’s the balance of doing vs. resting? Is space given for God to speak to you and for you to be able to listen? One of the things I think we’ve gotten used to is the ‘noise’ of life, and, for me, I’ve had to really begin to step back from some of it in order to meet God.
Also, in the midst of some of the monotony I’ve been feeling, I’ve been trying to give space to and nurture my creative side. I find that God has spoken to me powerfully in those places!
You have touched on some very valid and insightful points. Thank you for taking me to the anvil. I can see where I have not given any time for listening and resting with the Lord. Most of the “quiet time” I had set apart, I spent mostly talking.
The soil, the soil. My first thoughts were the heart… Some examination must be in order. So that those seeds can flourish. and you are right about the “creative side”, I realize now that i have not done much of any creative activities.
Thank You so much for the encouragement and the spurring. Pressing onward and upward!
I’ve been thinking about your question. Thank you so much for your vulnerability and sharing a little of your heart. Dry seasons are common to all believers and are most certainly not fun. I think @KMac has some great thoughts and here are a few more that come to mind.
The psalms are full of documented prayers which share your sentiments. Psalm 22:2 says “…I cry out by day but you do not answer, by night, but I find no rest…” Your description of being in the ocean actually sounds like Psalm 61. But in each of these prayers there is an acknowledgment that God is worthy to be praised, that He is in control and that He is faithful. Perhaps in these seasons we experience, God is asking us to take the attention off of ourselves in order to place it on to Him. Maybe it’s a call to realize our weakness and dependence on Him.
Along those same lines, I love the NASB translates Psalm 37:3
“Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness.”
It’s so hard but what if we looked at dry seasons as opportunities to cultivate faithfulness? It’s an opportunity to practice perseverance and running our races with endurance. As much as we do not want to get legalistic about our walk with the Lord, we do have to remember that practicing the spiritual disciplines is like exercising a muscle in that sometime we have to do it when we don’t want to in order to get stronger. RZIM did a great Take Five series on the spiritual disciplines here. In this way, we learn to delight in Him and the desires of our hearts begin to shift to look more like His (Ps. 37:4).
Also, this sermon excerpt from Paul Washer about pursuing intimacy with God is encouraging.
Sometimes I think it would be easy if we always lived in a constant “mountaintop” experience but then we wouldn’t have as great appreciation for them. Also our understanding of God’s faithfulness would be so so different. He’s always with you, Joe! He’s seeking more and more of your heart. Press into Him even when it might not feel comfortable. And like Kathleen said, choose to rest in the grace that He gives.
…let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
I am so grateful for your words of encouragement! I do agree with your statement here. I can see the pattern of worship through these psalms. In the midst of emotional turmoil, The Lord was still praised and magnified. It is a pleasant and needed reminder to “lift up the hands that hang down”. Though it can be difficult in the midst of troubles.
So grateful for the family of God that reaches out to stir up one another! Thank You!