Productivity Without Passion
Delivered By
From Pastor David
Delivered On
July 30, 2016
Central Passage
Revelation 2:1-7
Productivity Without Passion

  “To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands.  I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false.  You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.  Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.  Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.  But you have this in your favor: You hate the practices of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.  Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who is victorious, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.”  (Revelation 2:1-7) 

Imagine a marriage in which the husband dutifully earns a living to pay his family’s bills, takes care of the house and cars and sees that his family has the food, clothing and other things they need.  Yet he has lost all tenderness and passion for his wife.  Is this a healthy marital relationship?  This is called productivity without passion.  Just as the partners in a marriage can lose their passion for one another and yet carry on, a similar situation can occur in relationships between believers and God.  In fact, the church of Ephesus had fallen into this very trap.  Jesus noted that this church had “persevered and ... endured hardships for my name.” (Revelation 2:3)  But, he pointedly added, “you have forsaken the love you had at first.”   (Revelation 2:4) 

What about us?  When we compare our current relationship with Christ to what it was like when we first began following Him, are we just as passionate about knowing Him, being with Him and worshiping Him as we were then?  Or do we find ourselves busy serving Him without bothering to further cultivate our relationship with Him? Sadly, like a marriage without passion, our relationship with God can go through a period during which spiritual passion wanes.  We serve the Lord more out of habit or duty than out of a desire to know Him more deeply. Consider this possibility: God might occasionally want us to stop doing for Him so that we can concentrate on being with Him and recovering the love we had at first. 

The result: many dry marriages have been renewed and dry relationships with the Lord can experience renewed passion and vigor as well.  Let’s put our relationship with Christ first, then let our service for Him follow as a natural response. Questions to ponder: * What feelings did you have when you first followed Christ?  What words expressed your passion   about knowing him then? * How does that compare with your current feelings for Christ? * How can you rediscover your “first love” for your Lord and Savior--renew the passion and vigor of   your relationship with him? There are many helps at our fingertips ready to assist us in returning to our first love.  The following passages offer reminders and encouraging words for us:  Deuteronomy 6:4-9,  Matthew 7:21-23,  Luke 10: 38-42,  and Corinthians 13. Praying for our passionate return and renewed vigor to a more faithful and growing relationship with our Savior…

Pastor David