So there I am, sitting at a local coffee shop with one of my students and listening as he tells me that all he wants in life is to know God in the deepest way possible. He's emphatic as he details how he is willing to do whatever it takes to get to that point. In the exact same day, another student tells me that she's “bored” in her walk with God and that she “just doesn’t care anymore.”
Now before we start judging the student for being lazy, allow me to take a moment and ask if you have ever been in the same place in your relationship with God? You’ve heard all the messages and have read all the passages in the Bible. You've sang all the songs and have attended every Sunday service only to find yourself, at the end of the day, bored.
Sound familiar? It's a scenario that plays out all too often amongst the people of God. In this case, the scenario includes two completely different students with two distinct perspectives of the one and same God; the same God that saved both of their souls and forgave them their sins.
At the end of both conversations I did as any good pastor would do and gave them the best advice I had as I encouraged them both to commit to seeking the Lord in the easy and difficult times of life. Problem solved…or so I thought. You see, there was something bothering me about the second student that I talked to that morning. As I drove back to the office, I kept wondering how someone, who has tasted the “goodness of God" in ways that would make a theologian jealous, could simply give up on God because they’re "bored." There had to be a better answer I could give the kid other than to simply “be consistent.” Then it hit me. The answer was so simple that I couldn’t believe I didn’t see it before. Ready for it? Here it is:
“The proof of your passion is in your pursuit.”
If God is unchanging, and He is, then it isn’t God that has become boring…it’s us. We have ceased in our pursuit of God, the very thing that brings the growth and spiritual depth we all crave, and have instead traded our passion for powerlessness. Our pursuit has shifted from the One that recklessly pursues us to something that cannot possibly satisfy our spiritual hunger like God can.
King David realized this as when he was running for his life from people who wanted to kill him. Watch as he shifts his attention from his situation to God as he says this in Psalm 63.1-8:
“O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you in a dry and weary land where there is no water…Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. I will praise you as long as I live, and in your name I will lift up my hands… MY SOUL PURSUES YOU WITH ALL I HAVE…”
Leaders, it all starts here. Before you speak into the lives of those you mentor, speak into your own. Remind yourself why you started running the race of ministry in the first place. Remember that it's about far more than pursuing a Christian culture; it's about pursuing the Christ of your culture. Do this and everything else will take care of itself.
Let's not forget, the chips were stacked against David when he wrote this. He was in a desert, running from people who were trying to kill him, and he had no hope. Yet he served notice on his soul and told himself that that he would PURSUE God regardless of his situation because God is worthy of it. Let's be sure that we follow suit.