Are you a FANATIC? How would you define it? How does God define it?
This week we begin a short two-part series that considers the question of how God wants us to follow Him. In the love story that is the Bible, we see time and time again how God does not desire for His people to be mediocre in following Him. He calls us to sell out and give all of ourselves in service to Him and to others. Is that what your journey looks like right now? It’s certainly not uncommon that it wouldn’t … but should it?
So how about those opening questions? Well, here is how Google defines “fanatic”… a person filled with excessive and single-minded zeal. I think we can all agree with that. I am a Packers fan (and yes, I do understand what that means to admit that in the context of my current “geography” — right in the middle of Lions country!). Notice I said, “fan” and not fanatic. I think we can all picture in our minds what a fanatic looks like at Lambeau field. Words like “excessive” and “zeal” are easy to picture, and make us nod “yes” as great definitions of what it means to be a fanatic.
If we asked God how He defines it, I believe He would use the word “zeal” too. Here’s what Paul says in the book of Romans…
Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.
God also uses that specific word in the context of the story of someone who is actually my favorite character in the Bible. And who is someone who provides a very clear picture of being a fanatic in following God. Take some time and watch the video above, or click here to read the story of a specific event/time in the history of the nation of Israel, and the actions of a man named Phinehas.
I know how it might look to think of this man as my favorite character in the Bible! Look beyond the specifics of what he did, and see the “sold out” in his service to God. He didn’t stop to weigh the options or convene a committee to discuss the situation and the appropriate response … Phinehas took bold (zealous) action. And “because he was zealous” (Numbers 25:13), God made a covenant of peace with he and his descendants, and removed the plague that was judging the nation for choosing other gods over Him.
Would we be so bold (zealous) in our own lives?
In considering that general question over the next two weeks, we’ll offer two very specific areas as an application in your “here and now” life. Today, we would like you to …
There is a monumental need, and it’s not limited to children in far away places. Right here in our big “backyard” of Michigan, there are nearly 400,000 children in the Foster Care system waiting for parents to love them and care for them. There is a WIDE gap, and I believe that we as a Life Bridge family are called to step into that gap and consider our place in meeting this great need. I urge you to watch the video above, and contact us if your heart is tweaked with the question of what you can do. I would offer a couple of verses in support of what I believe to be biblical truth about how we are called as a community of faith to step into this gap…
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
“Anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me.”
the words of Jesus from Matthew 18:5
The truth of fanatics is that They Go First. They act, as Phinehas did, without consideration of how others will. Their hearts have been touched by the problem, and they choose to act with zeal. Will you spend this week, or however long God lays this on your heart, considering Adoption?