What do passionate people look like? Every year in February millions of people come together on a Sunday to celebrate what some might think of like a national holiday in the United States. Super Bowl Sunday. Every year you will see fans showing their dedication and love for their team. From the wearing of team colors to elaborate costumes and body paint it’s quite a spectacle. Indeed, on Super Bowl Sunday, there will undoubtedly be many people happy to show their passion for their team and the sport of football. 

American Football, by no means, has a monopoly on enthusiastic fans. Soccer, baseball, basketball, and hockey are a few of the sports where the fans show their love for the sport and the players. Sporting events aren’t the only places where we can see the adoration of fans for their teams and the players in them. From young women fainting and screaming at the sight of their favorite Beatle to megastars like Justin Bieber and Frank Sinatra, people love what they love, and they’re not afraid to show their devotion. 

Many fans are willing to go to great lengths to go to sporting events and concerts. People will camp overnight to buy tickets and wait in long lines to buy the best seats. This type of behavior isn’t isolated to watching someone run up and down a field or belt out music on a stage. Every year we hear about Black Friday sales and the lengths people go to get what they want.

In the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the church at Corinth, he writes, “We are fools for Christ, but you are so wise in Christ! We are weak, but you are strong! You are honored, we are dishonored!” (1 Corinthians 4:10 NIV). Paul was being ironic here, pointing out that he and other apostles were considered fools for their faith in Christ, while the people at Corinth considered themselves wise in their understanding of the Lord’s ways. 

After Peter and the other apostles had been flogged by the Sanhedrin in the book of Acts, their response wasn’t what one might expect.

The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name.

Acts 5:41 (NIV)

The Apostle Paul, in his second letter to the Corinthians, “boasts” like a “fool” about his sufferings for Christ. 

Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea.

2 Corinthians 11:24-25 (NIV)

The Apostles all had a willingness to do whatever it took to spread the message of the Gospel. From the little I’ve touched upon here, we can see that their willingness brought suffering into their lives. Some might have considered them to be fools for their faith. 

For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:18 (NIV)

The world has a lot of different opinions about Christianity and those who call themselves Christians. Some are indifferent to God and the people who follow Him. In some places, those who profess to follow Christ are persecuted and suffer for his Name. What I wonder, as I think about the love we profess for Christ, is this, are we willing?

While I was studying Exodus today I found myself starting to fade a bit as I was reading about the building of the tabernacle. When I read long lists of names, numbers, or materials, I feel my attention waning. Exodus 35-36 aren’t quite like some areas in Numbers, but I still found myself drifting a bit today. One word, however, stood out to me about the people Moses described here.

Willing.

All of the people involved were willing to do what was needed to get the job done. The word “willing” occurs six times in Exodus 35 and twice in Exodus 36. Are we willing?

  • Willing to fail.
  • Willing to suffer.
  • Willing to be uncomfortable.
  • Willing to be humiliated.
  • Willing to take a chance.
  • Willing to be still.
  • Willing to trust.
  • Willing to submit.
  • Willing to die.

For our faith?

When we watch sporting events and see people decked out in all sorts of fantastic garb, screaming and cheering for their team, we might think they look a little foolish, but there’s no doubt where their passion lies. People who spend a month’s worth of rent for a front-row seat to see their favorite star boggle my mind, but I know they’re devoted. Do we show any devotion or similar commitment to Christ, or do we grumble when church service goes too long? Do we read the Bible when we feel like it? Pray only when we want something? 

I want to leave you with two images that I believe represent every Christian in one way or another. 

Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancing before the Lord with all his might, while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets.

2 Samuel 6:14-15 (NIV)

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.

Revelation 3:15-16 (NIV)

Do you know God? God knows you, and He loves you. He sees you as significant because you are. No one is insignificant to Him. He’s with you today, right now, and He wants you to know Him. Jesus died for your sins and mine so we could be free of guilt, be freed from death, and live eternally with Him. Eternal salvation is just a prayer away. 

Pray this prayer with me to accept the gift of salvation today:

Lord Jesus, forgive me for all my sins. I repent from my ways. Wash me in your blood and cleanse me from all unrighteousness. I believe that you died on the cross, were buried, and on the third day, God the Father raised you from the dead. Right now, Lord Jesus, I open the door to my heart, and I receive you into my heart as my Lord and personal Savior. Amen.

If you prayed that prayer, then congratulations! You are on the first step of a brand new life. Allow me to be the first to welcome you to my family, the family of God. There are abundant resources available online for new Christians. You can visit here for more information on what to do next. You can also leave me a comment, and I’ll do my best to help you on the next step of this incredible journey.