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Watch 2022 online sermons » Steven Furtick » Steven Furtick - Put Your Passion In Its Place

Steven Furtick - Put Your Passion In Its Place


Steven Furtick - Put Your Passion In Its Place
TOPICS: Passion

Over in the book of Revelation, chapter 2, verses 2-5, there's a challenge. Let's turn our attention to the text. The angel at the church in Ephesus is receiving a message. The word of the Lord comes. Verse 2: "I know your works, your toil, and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name's sake, and you have not grown weary". "You're doing a lot of things right, and I see it. I see you struggling, and I see you showing up. But I have this against you. There's something that's working against you. There's something I need to challenge you on today".

"I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember, therefore, from where you have fallen; repent…" It means to change your mind. It means to change your direction. "Repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent". "I see you. I love you, but if you don't remember and repent, you're going to lose your place". I want to preach to you today on the subject Put Your Passion In Its Place. I want you to pray with me that I could communicate this message in a powerful and clear way.

Father, anoint your Word and open our hearts. May we hear it and do it and never be the same. We declare it and thank you in advance for feeding us from your hand. In Jesus' name, amen.


On your way to your seat, touch somebody and say, "You're going to get it back today". I'm just telling you right now you're going to get it back today. I want to show you something from last summer. I took my kids back to my hometown and took them on a tour of Moncks Corner, South Carolina. A lot of people want to go to the Holy Land, and some people, on their bucket list, they just want to see Moncks Corner. I took my kids to all of the sites I could think of that were memorable to me growing up. I'm very proud of my small-town heritage. I'm very proud of the church I grew up in. I took them by Moncks Corner United Methodist Church. A lady who recognized me saw us pull up. She said, "Little Stevie Furtick". Her sister taught my Sunday school class. She knew I was pastoring now and was proud of me and all that. She said we could walk in and do whatever we wanted. She was there cleaning.

We went over to the choir room, and I showed the kids how I used to suit up on Sunday mornings when I was about 11. I was an acolyte at the Methodist church. I kind of walked them through. I wanted to show them how I did it back in the day. Not just anybody could be an acolyte. It took a special talented kid. Very spiritually elite children were called upon. They didn't let you light your own wick. They had a committee member for that. I walked them through it. That's me at the front of the church showing them how I used to do it. You had to do it a certain way. You know, you come down during the first song. I don't remember it exactly. It has been a while, but there was a certain way you did the candles and all of that. Then you lit it.

Abbey had a funny line when I was showing her all this. She said, "Daddy, did you have to practice that"? I said, "Yeah, baby. It took a lot of practice. You had to do it just right. You can't mess it up". Plus Melissa Heidrich was sitting up there in the balcony, and I had a crush on her. I didn't want to burn down the church in front of my childhood crush, light my robe on fire in front of my crush. So you had to practice that. Then at the end, how you put the fire out. That's important there at the end. While I'm standing up there with them… It's memories, you know. Sometimes you go back and remember things. That was where I preached my first sermon on youth Sunday. They only give you 12 minutes to preach in the Methodist Church. I know what some of you are thinking. "Can we make this a Methodist church? That sounds awesome". It takes me 12 minutes to tell you hello.

How many of you are glad I preach long sermons, because you know you're jacked up? It's going to take me a whole lot more than 12 minutes to straighten you out, weirdo. Touch somebody and say, "It's going to take more than 12. You're a mess". Me too. Anyway, I was remembering that first sermon. I was preaching on Peter walking on water. I didn't even need the full 12 minutes. To be honest with you, within 5 minutes I had used all my notes and there were 7 minutes left. I had nothing more to say. I was 16. I didn't have content. I was preaching on the storms of life, 16 years old, trying to tell 73-year-old Methodist women about the storms of life. I didn't have a lot of life experience, but I'll tell you what I had. I had passion. I mean, if I could have walked across the pews, I would have walked across the pews to show them how Peter came out to Jesus on that boat.

I didn't have much sense, but I had passion. In fact, last night when I was preaching, they brought up a group of people who have been in the church 10 years, and it made me remember back to all the things we have now as a church that we did not have 10 years ago when we started. We didn't have all these lights and cameras for video and all this money to start campuses. God knows we didn't have a building. Our first capital campaign, I didn't have a building, a blueprint to show the people. We didn't have any of that, but we had passion. Oh man, we had passion. We had the kind of passion that they were calling us a cult. Until they're calling you a cult, you aren't doing anything. We had passion. I had passion preaching in that senior center.

Josh, remember you wrote me that letter the other day about my first green room. It wasn't a green room. It was a closet. We would move the plants out of the closet, and you would knock on it with one minute left so I'd come out and lead the music. We didn't even have that many people, but we had passion. How many know you can push through a lot when you have passion? Passion matters. I was standing there with my kids, thinking about when I started preaching and having conversations with my young self and checking my passion. In Revelation, chapter 2, there is a challenge to passion. I think it's good every once in a while to challenge your passion level in contrast to the passion you had.

Do you still have passion? You remember the first apartment we lived in together, Holly. You remember it well. You remember the mouse traps. You remember how you cooked all that fried rice and pasta and made me fat within a year and a half of being your husband. I think you were trying to make sure I stayed with you. She got me so fat that first year, cooking for me. I found a picture the other day. In fact, she brought it to me. I don't know if she's trying to keep me motivated to stay in the gym. I was about 45 pounds heavier. Not in the biceps. I wish you could see this picture. I thought about putting it on the screen, but some of y'all are going to lunch after this. I don't want to mess up your lunch. I'm standing there. I have my eyes closed and my shirt off and my belly out, looking like an infomercial "before" picture. That little apartment, Juniper Terrace apartment C15. It was very small, and the insulation in the walls was very thin.

The reason I know is because Tammy from Juniper Terrace apartment C16 came over to us after our first night in the apartment and knocked on the door and said, "I'm your neighbor Tammy, and I just want to let you know we can hear everything". It was a duplex. "I just want you to know we can hear everything that happens in C15. And I mean everything". We didn't have a lot of space, but we had a lot of passion. Which brings us to Revelation, chapter 2. Isn't the connection obvious, people? He said, "You had something when you were small that you lost now that you're significant". Ephesus was not an imaginary place. When the book of Revelation is issuing seven letters to seven churches, they're real churches with real people with real histories.

It has been 43 years since Paul started this church, traveling inland with a group of compadres who are spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. He spends a couple of years with these people in Ephesus. When he started out, he just met some people. There were 12 guys who were disciples of John the Baptist. Paul asked them, "Do you have the Holy Spirit"? They said, "We don't even know that there is a Holy Spirit". They didn't have a lot of theological knowledge, but do you know what they had? They had passion. Paul laid his hands on them, and when he did, they started to speak in tongues and received the Holy Spirit. They didn't just speak in another language. They started speaking about Jesus. They were speaking in the synagogues, and their passion was so strong the crowds started coming out, and they didn't like it.

Sometimes when you get passionate, apathetic people get threatened. The Jewish religious system was not a fan of the prevalence of the gospel, so they kicked Paul out of the synagogue. How many know when you have passion you'll find another place? Nobody can shut you down when you have real passion. If they kick you out of the synagogue, you'll go to the lecture hall. That's exactly what Paul did. He preached powerfully in Ephesus. It wasn't just an accident that he ended up in Ephesus. God strategically placed Paul in Ephesus, because there were 300,000 people who lived there. It was the fourth largest city in the world at that time, known as the seventh wonder of the world, home of the temple of Artemis, daughter of Zeus. Ephesus was a place where people would come to get their shipments. It was a port city. It was well situated. It was an important place.

So Paul is passionate, and Ephesus is an important place, and God says, "I have to get the guy with the passion in the right place". When I look back over my life, I'm grateful that God has directed my past and made sure that my passion had a place to operate. I'm grateful that God found me as a teenager and gave me a place to preach, because God saw I had a passion. Now, as a parent, I'm always trying to look and make sure that if my kids have a passion, I encourage it. If you're into a Rubik's cube, I'll buy you three. If you like Minecraft, I'll tolerate and pretend to listen to you as you explain it to me. I want you to have a passion. Passion matters. It matters. No matter what position you're in, passion matters. If you can't do it with passion in a small place, why in the world would God promote you to a bigger one?

Paul didn't start in Ephesus, but he ended up there. He started in Damascus, spending time in isolation, but the same passion that was developing in his isolation… Did that make you think of David when I said that? Because that would be a great Old Testament illustration of this New Testament personality. David is a shepherd, killing lions, killing bears, and didn't even know he was preparing for Goliath, but it was the same passion in the pasture that got him to the palace. Same passion waiting for a place to happen. That's one of the frustrating things. You can have the right passion in the wrong place. You can have more passion than opportunity to express it. It's frustrating. I know some of you who come to church here would express yourself more in church, but you don't know if it's appropriate.

I have one friend who grew up in churches where it was more demonstrative. He said when he first came to Elevation it was kind of hard for him. I said, "Really"? He said, "Yeah, because I would want to stand up while you were preaching and shout you down". It's a black guy, by the way, incidentally. He said, "But I was around a bunch of white people, and God bless them, and we all have different personalities, but when I would stand up, I was the only one. I would stand up, and I was expecting everybody else to be standing too". He said, "You were preaching so passionately. The Word just got in me, and I couldn't stay seated. I'm standing up, but I'm the only one. All these people around me…" Sometimes you can let other people minimize your passion and downplay your passion to the level of other people.

Don't ever let another person become the ceiling on your passion. I'd rather change people than lose passion. I'd rather get some new friends who want to serve God and want to love God. I'd rather move seats than stay in my seat when the Spirit of God hit me. In fact, if you're sitting at a campus and nobody around you looks excited, raise your hand and ask the ushers if they'll move your seating assignment, because I need some room to praise God, because when I think of the goodness of Jesus… Anybody have passion? When you have passion, sometimes when you get around complacent people or people who have a different personality, you feel funny.

My friend Carl Lentz came to preach at our Code Orange Revival. He pastors in New York City. His kids play ball in Brooklyn. He came to my kid's Little League baseball game. He came to Graham's baseball game in South Charlotte. He tried to bring a Brooklyn passion to a South Charlotte baseball game. I mean, no sooner had he gotten out there to the bleachers than he was talking trash to the ump. This is not a high school baseball game. These are 8-year-old, 9-year-old kids. Carl is telling the ump, "Looked good to me, ump! Be happy to get you some glasses, ump"! Next thing I know, he's talking trash to the kid on the other team on deck. "Not today number 11! I don't think so, little guy"! I said, "Carl, we don't do that here. I appreciate your passion, but this is the wrong place. I have to come to the field with these people all season. Some of them on the other team go to my church. Shut up".

Touch somebody and say, "Keep your passion in its place". The place for sex is in the marriage bed. I know you have passion, but passion needs a place to operate, like a fire. If you're in disagreement with what I just said, let me prove it using natural elements. When I started this sermon, I lit this wick, and none of you had a problem. Why? Because it was in its proper place. I bet if I brought this wick down to the crowd and put this fire in your hair… You say, "I got it, Preacher. Keep it in its place". Misplaced passion is very dangerous. Do you know what's even more dangerous? To let somebody with Brooklyn passion get around somebody with a South Charlotte attitude. I mean, I love my city. We're a great city. I'm not saying we owe anything to those Yankees, but I'm saying that sometimes a new person will come into the church and they're excited. They are fired up. They have a passion.

Let them get around Bobby, who has been a Christian for 23 years, and Bobby is looking at them saying, "We don't do that around here". People who are new to the faith, people who have that first love, don't know you're not supposed to read your Bible yet. They don't know we only listen to it on Sundays and don't bother with it during the week. If you don't watch them, they'll bring that passion into your church, if they don't get around the wrong people. Something is happening in Ephesus. When they first started, they didn't have the knowledge, but they had the passion. They didn't have the people, but they had the passion. They didn't have the political support of the government. They didn't have a 501(c)(3) nonprofit tax-exempt status. They didn't have a Christian president, but they had passion. They had false doctrine coming into the church.

In fact, Paul told Timothy one time… Look at this in 1 Timothy 1:3. Timothy was a young man, and he didn't have much experience. The Bible gives us reason to believe that Timothy had a timid personality. Paul had to remind him over and over again, "Hey, God didn't give you a spirit of timidity, Timothy". Timid Timmy is pastoring a big city church, and there are people teaching false doctrine and trying to deny the gospel of Christ. Timothy, in his twenties, with a timid personality… By the way, passion is not a personality type. Passion isn't how high you jump. Passion is how straight you walk when your feet hit the ground. The proof of passion is perseverance. I'll prove it to you in the Scripture. I'll prove it to you from 1 Timothy 1:3. Paul says, "Timothy, I urged you before when I was on my way through Macedonia, and I'm telling you again: Remain in Ephesus".

Now watch this. You don't have to tell somebody to stay somewhere they want to be. I've never had a massage therapist have to tell me to stay on the table. I have had a physical trainer have to tell me to do another rep, to urge me to keep going. You don't urge people to do something they naturally want to do. There must have been an instinct in Timothy to run. You're young. You're inexperienced. There's false doctrine circulating in the church. Timothy must not have been feeling it anymore. Timothy's fire might have been going out, so Paul said, "I want you to remain there in Ephesus and do the hard stuff, persevere, stick it out".

Come home to a family that might not even appreciate you right now, show up at a job that might not even recognize your value right now, and preach in a place where you're persecuted. The proof of your passion is your perseverance. I don't know if I was really passionate when I was preaching when I was 16. I was just excited. There's a difference. Interest is not passion. Knowledge is not passion. Passion is something different. When you watch a movie and they go home after the first time they meet at a bar and rip each other's clothes off, that's not passion; that's attraction. One is from the heart; one is from the hormones. Passion isn't I rip your clothes off after the first time we meet. That's not passion. Passion is when I saw my mom taking my dad's clothes off while he was dying to give him a bath because he couldn't move his own body.

Now that's passion. Am I right about passion? Passion is proven by perseverance. Passion is proven when you kneel down in the garden of Gethsemane like Jesus and say, "I'm under pressure right now. I don't want to do it right now. Nevertheless, not my will but your will be done". You haven't even found your passion until you've passed your feelings. I'm concerned about this, because we've convoluted it. We've taught people that if you don't feel it, you don't have to do it. If you have real passion, you'll do it when you're up, do it when you're down, do it when they pay you, do it when they don't, do it when they thank you, do it when they look you over, do it when they hate you, do it when they love you. I have passion! I have passion to preach. I have passion to parent. I have passion to pay down my debt.

If it doesn't happen all at once, that's all right. I have the passion to stick it out. I'm like Ruth, Naomi. You can't run me off if you want to. I'm like Elisha, Elijah. You can tell me to leave, but I won't, because I have a passion. Where is your passion? Say it. "Passion". Say it like that, with the concentration on the vowel. "Passion". Can you imagine if I preached how some of y'all listen? That would be horrible. "Well, y'all, I have something to say today. I'm just going to get around to it. If you open your Bible there to Revelation, chapter 2, and the book of Ephesians, because it's a picture of the church at Ephesus from a doctrinal standpoint, but now it's been a couple of decades and they're losing their passion. They've lost their first love. Love, passion".

What got me about the church at Ephesus is that he commends their labor, but they've lost their love. It isn't like they weren't making progress, but in the process of making progress, of keeping the false doctrine out, in the process of eliminating things from their life and their church that didn't need to be there in the last 43 years… Now John is writing from a place called the island of Patmos, sending a messenger to the church at Ephesus. He says, "I see your progress". You have a job now. You have a wife now. The question is…Do you still have passion? You have the apparatus, but you've lost your passion. All this is kind of pointless if nothing is burning. Passion. You lost it. You lost your passion.

One thing I always ask our worship team is that they lead you with passion. I don't know what kind of hell you went through this week or what kind of hell you're going home to, so let's make it heaven on earth in here. I think they do a really good job at every campus, Kelly Summers and Jane Williams and Jonsal Barrientes. This is a place for passion. Hey, you want to cry in this church? You can cry. Here's a hankie. You want to shout? You can shout. You want to run? Just don't run toward the stage. It makes me frightened. You're distracting me. Run in place. Sometimes your passion is waiting on a place to happen. Graham's teacher told us the other day in the parent/teacher conference, "Graham just loves life, but sometimes I have to work with him on where it is appropriate to express that love for life". I said, "Example, please".

She's a great teacher. She said that sometimes Graham will just jump up in the middle of class and dab on a math problem and just dance across the room, just jump up. There's a time to dab. Sometimes that flame becomes an ember. I felt like the Lord wanted somebody today to get their passion back, and he tells you how to do it. He doesn't just challenge that you've lost your passion. I mean, I don't know your reaction to the Scripture, but I take it as parental guidance, that God is warning me, "If you lose your passion, you're going to lose your place". Can I break that down? If you don't love that woman now that you're married to her the same way, and in increasing ways, that you did when you dated her, somebody else might. Now that's not a threat. That's just reality. If I don't want to preach with passion, you think God can't raise up another preacher who's smarter than me? No, no, no. I don't operate out of the assumption that I'm entitled to anything God gave me. I have to keep my passion.

How can you have so much passion before you have the position? How do you get it back? He said, "You've abandoned it. You didn't lose your passion. You left it. You abandoned your first love. You stopped doing the things…" Look at it. He said, "You've abandoned your first love. Remember, therefore, from where you have fallen". I love God, because he doesn't say we should regret where we are. He says we should remember where we were. Get your eyes back to the hills where your help comes. I'm not staying where I am. I want my passion back. Somebody shout, "I want it back"! I don't just want to look like a Christian. I want a fire in my heart. I don't want to go through the motions. Here's what you do. Remember from where you have fallen. Repent. Let's look at the Scripture together. "Repent, and feel the feelings you felt at first".

Isn't that how we treat passion, like it's a sensation? Yet when he challenges their passion, he calls them to action. "Do the things you did at first". It's a decision, not a sensation. Let me tell you something else. Do it. Do it. Do it. How do I get it back? Okay, I'm going to pray. "Lord! I want my passion back"! It ain't coming. Not like that. You don't pray to get it back; you practice. Do the things you did at first. "I don't feel grateful anymore". Be grateful. "I don't feel excited anymore". Be excited. "I don't feel love anymore". Be loving. Do it. Do it. Do it. What's it? What you did at first. Do it. Practice. Can I show you something? Is this word good? I sure enjoyed preparing it. I think I liked cooking this better than you could ever like eating it.

While I was preparing it, the Lord gave me an illustration of it. You guys may not know the names of these musicians. I mentioned them already on the platform. One of our musicians here, LJ, he's a little newer to the team, but he has passion. He's not some young buck who always wanted to be on the stage. He has done some things. He has wasted some seasons. I didn't know about him. I was looking for somebody in this particular position. I wanted somebody who would have not just the technical skills or proficiency to be back here but someone who would have the passion for it. Do you know how I knew he was the guy? He said that when I send in my Scriptures for them to put on the screen, he begs the people who get the email with the Scriptures if he can see them so he can figure out what I'm going to preach on so he can start thinking through what song he might start playing when I start closing. That's passion.

I brought him up. I love all of our team. Don't get me wrong. You're not my favorite or anything like that, but just something I heard… He was living in Canada, which is known for its passion. He was going through a season. I'm not going to tell all of his details. Maybe you can ask him one day. When his wife would go to bed at night, he would put on his headphones and he would practice playing with preachers online. He didn't have a position, but he had a passion. He would put his headphones on so as not to disturb his wife's sleep, I assume. I'm sure she appreciated that. He would play along with the preaching. I heard that there was a season where you would play along with me online. I didn't know who he was. Never heard of him. Never even heard his name. They didn't even call David's name when he was out in the field tending sheep. He didn't have a position, but when you have a passion, you practice.

You don't wait for a position. You don't do it because somebody is watching. You don't do it because it's a performance. You do it because it's a passion. He didn't know; he was just killing lions. He didn't know; he was just killing bears. But when Goliath came stepping forward to the battle line, he had been practicing. Now he's back there and I'm up here, because he had a passion. Passion will bring you from the pasture to the palace. Passion will bring you from the lowest to the highest. Repent and get your passion back. Come on, take 15 seconds and praise him passionately. God is not dead. He's not done with you. Get your passion back in place. David said, "Oh yeah. I've been practicing for this. I've been waiting for an opportunity. I've been waiting for a giant". I'm practicing. You have to practice your passion. Practice. I was riding home with Elijah on Friday.

We were filling up the little gas cans with gas to put gas in the four-wheeler, a very spiritual activity. We filled them up and put them in Holly's suburban. I said, "Elijah, we have to put them just right, because if the gas sloshes around the back of the car, your mom isn't going to be happy about our outing". He said, "Dad, I'm worried, because all the way here they were sliding around in the back". I said, "Don't worry, boy. They might have been sliding on the way, but they were empty. Now that they're full, they're not going anywhere". I started preaching to Elijah. While I'm driving, I'm practicing. Preaching is not just my profession; it's my passion. If you have passion, you ought to preach in the car. You ought to preach in the kitchen. You ought to worship God Monday, Tuesday. It's my passion. I practice my passion. Practice, practice, practice.

Find seven people and tell them, "Practice, practice". You never know what God might want to do through you. You have to practice. "Well, I would pray, but I just don't feel anything when I pray". You haven't practiced enough. If you would pray two minutes, you would see the peace that two minutes brings, and tomorrow you'll want to pray five. If you practice, if you'd open your Bible and read a verse, you'd want to read two. You might read four. You might read eight. You might finish the book of Galatians before the week is over if you would practice. I'm practicing. If you ever see me in the grocery store and I'm mumbling, I'm not crazy. I'm practicing. "What are you doing throwing that stick on the ground, Moses"? "I'm practicing, because I have to use this stick to part the waters".

Until I practice, I can't perform it. You've lost your passion because you stopped practicing. Even the best lose their passion without practice. Even David, the kid who ran to the battle line and said, "I don't need a position; I have passion. I don't need the endorsement of Saul; I have passion. I don't even need my brothers to like me; I have passion". That kid who ran to the battle line, a kid who practiced, found himself decades later… He was in the palace, but he had lost his passion. He sat down and wrote a psalm. He cried out to God and asked the Lord to recreate and restore his passion. "Create a clean heart in me, O God". "I had a pure passion when I started. I've allowed some things to come into my life. I've allowed some people and some memories and some decisions and distractions and even some good things. I've been trying to keep the false stuff out, but I've left my first love, and I want my passion back".

He was home one day, walking around on his roof. That same kid who was willing to run to the battle lines… He has seen a lot of years now. Maybe not 43, like the church at Ephesus, but it has been quite a few years since that time. He's not running toward the battle anymore. He's avoiding it. The Bible says that in the springtime, when the kings go off to war, David stayed home. The king in the palace had lost that passion of the kid in the pasture. He got out of place. He saw a beautiful woman bathing on the roof. He called for her, and she had no choice but to come. When he slept with her, they conceived a child that resulted in a national scandal. Her husband was murdered at the behest of David's henchman.

David received word that the child born to his wife would die, and he cried out from that place, "I want my passion back. I've lost my baby. I've compromised my integrity, but if it took me losing some things to realize that I had lost my passion… God, all I can do now… I can't get back the baby, but I can get back my passion. I can't get back last week, last month, last year. Would you redeem the time I've wasted, God? I want my passion back". I just know somebody's heart is crying out. Maybe even watching online. You couldn't even get to church. You didn't even come today. Your heart is crying out as I preach. Stand to your feet. It's a holy moment in the sanctuary. "I want my passion back". Abbey asked me that question. She said, "Daddy, did you have to practice that"?

I was standing there thinking about my kids. Maybe one day they'll take their kids to the church they grew up in, and I wonder what they'll be telling them about our church. Will they be telling them what God used to do? Will they be telling them about the people who used to give sacrificially, who didn't have a building but had passion? Will this be the place where they had revival one time, or will it be a place where the revival fire never died because of a people with a passion? I want to pray for you. When David got done lamenting what he had lost and he prayed out, "God, don't take your Spirit from me. I can lose anything, but I don't want to lose my place…" "To the angel of the church at Ephesus, to the husband and dad of four at Ballantyne, to the teenage girl in Rock Hill, write these words. If you will find your purpose, you will recover your passion".

I think the worst advice we could give a young person is to follow your passion. That might sound exciting, but it's self-destructive. You don't follow your passion. If you follow your passion, you're going to get your passion confused with your feelings, and the first time the wind blows really hard your flame will go out. Don't follow your passion, because sometimes you can't tell your passion apart from your preference. Sometimes you can't tell your faith apart from your feelings, so you don't stay in Ephesus. You don't stay in the hard places. Don't follow your passion. Follow your purpose. Remember the reason God saved you. Get your lampstand back. Every candle needs a stand. The passion is the flame, and the purpose is the stand. Put your passion on your purpose. My passion follows my purpose.

When I feel it, when I don't, same purpose. You've been here and there and everywhere, losing time, losing joy, losing passion, following your passion. That's ridiculous. "Follow your passion". How ridiculous is that? You know you would have married that crazy girl. Follow your passion? No, no. Find your passion and teach your passion to follow your purpose. Tell your passion where to show up in the place of your purpose. I mean, imagine if the people running the cameras at this church got it flipped. Imagine if the people running the cameras while I'm preaching all of a sudden thought it was my job to follow the camera. How ridiculous would that be? In fact, I'm going to illustrate it. I'm going to show you how ridiculous it is when you follow your passion.

So I have to preach now, and while I'm preaching, the camera… Now I have to follow the camera. How ridiculous is it when you run around in life letting your feelings tell you what job to take and what job to quit and what relationship to be in? No, no, no. I don't follow the camera; the camera follows me. You have to stay with me. I don't follow passion. My passion follows my purpose. Does anybody have purpose? "Looking unto Jesus, the author, the finisher of my faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, despising the shame". I want my passion back, and my passion is waiting in the place of my purpose. I want to pray for you. If this message hit your heart today, if it was for you, I want you to know that after David laid down and prayed and asked God to give him the baby back, the Bible says he made a decision to get up, to repent.

After he had been there long enough, he got up and he went in and he had another baby. He got his passion back. Could this be the day that you get your passion back? Not just goose bumps, not just a comfortable feeling, but an inner determination and resolve that says, "I will. I will. I will. I don't feel it, but I will. I don't even want to sometimes, but I will, because my passion serves my purpose". Bow your head. "Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and do not take your Holy Spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of your salvation. Renew a right spirit, and grant me a willing spirit". Somebody say, "I will". Even when I don't feel, I will, because I have a passion. I will. I'm not waiting on the position; I have a passion.

Father, we thank you today for returning us to our first love. We don't want to labor without love, and we don't want to serve you without passion. We don't want to lose our place. We don't want to miss our chance. While the lampstand is still in place, while we still have breath in our bodies, while we still have an opportunity, we call out to you, God. We don't ask you to restore our passion, because the fact is you didn't take it away. It's still in us. It was just waiting for this word, for this moment, to be awakened. God, we call our passion to the surface, like Elisha called the iron ax head to float to the top of the water. We're calling our passion forth today. We're calling our victory forth today. Like David got up, we're getting up. We want our passion back. We command our passion to serve your purpose in our lives. We will by your Spirit. We will by your power. We will. We're getting up today. Not staying down, not staying lost, not staying lonely. We're getting up. I'm getting up! I'm getting up right now, right here! I want my passion back!

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