October 20, 2018
Romans 12:11… Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in Spirit, serve the lord.
“Do not be slothful in zeal…” This is one of those phrases that we are pretty sure we understand. Slothful is kind of like “lazy’, right? It is that but it is also about being inattentive. Are you inattentive to zeal? In my life, I have found that zeal is encouraged by others. I have always been moved by zealous people. Sometimes I have been inspired to remember my own zeal. Some of us wear zeal as an undershirt; it is always present but not seen often. But, others wear it as a jacket, It is one of the first things you notice.
When you are pushed against a wall, what shows about you. Sometimes the most obvious thing is self-preservation. Perhaps it should be your zeal for God. “Be fervent in Spirit” Fervency is kind of like the opposite of slothfulness. We are to zealously and fervently serve the Lord. I was recently in a conversation about Amway sales. Early in my adult life, I made a decision to not be persuaded by an Amway sales presentation. The best way for me to stay clear of it was to avoid a presentation. I did well for a long time but then I was tricked into attending an event. The salesperson was zealous about the sales model that the company used. I resisted and survived without signing anything. But, was I that zealous about the plan of salvation, as given by God? Salvation is our touch-point with God. We begin life with Him by believing His offer. Once we enter, the whole world opens up to us. Without entering His kingdom, we merely imitate what we hear and think. I know people who try to do good because they think that is what is expected of them. They have not heard God say, “Do this.” They have heard people say it and their life is lived, trying to do what certain people expect of them. Missing from that life is intimacy with God.
Does it not make sense that if we are going to serve God, we need to hear Him?
Paul goes on: verse 12… Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.
These are not 3 separate times in one’s life; they are 3 mindsets that are always available. Rejoice in hope, be constant in prayer, during/in tribulation. Be fervent toward God, patiently enduring difficulties. Don’t hide at hard times.