“You know how something in my relationship with God has been off lately?” I asked my friend over the phone.
As soon as I asked the question, I heard a quiet sigh as she replied, “Yes.”
I went on to tell her what I theorized the problem to be.
That happened many times over the past several months, when I finally came to realize the root of it all: my passion for Jesus was gone.
However, what I didn’t realize was that the passionate feeling for Jesus was not a solid enough foundation for my relationship with Him.
Feelings Are Not Facts!
I don’t know if you’ve ever heard this before, but it is not a sin to be tempted, nor is it a sin to have feelings.
However, it is extremely important how we choose to act on those feelings or temptations. We can choose either evil or we can choose good.
Nonetheless, there are times when we just don’t feel any motivation to chase after Jesus. What matters is that those feelings do not take priority over what we know to do as right.
I guarantee you that almost everyone who has been a Christian for a long time has lost their feeling of passion for Jesus at some time or other. Just know that it is completely natural to lose that feeling at times.
What matters is our actions, not our feelings.
What to Do With a Faded Passion
So that leads to the question: what do we do when our passion for Jesus fades?
From my experience with a faded passion I learned to do several things that keep me growing closer to God, even when it didn’t feel like anything was happening.
1: Know Your Feelings Don’t Change What He Did
First, acknowledge that it’s okay to not always feel that fire. Although our feelings may change, remember that Jesus has not. He still died to save us. He still pursues us. He still loves us unconditionally. You are still His own.
2: Faith Before Feelings
Second, remember that our faith and relationship with Jesus must be based on truth and not on our feelings.
Like the waves of the ocean, our feelings will always be changing. But if we base your faith on truth it will be like “a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built.” (Luke 6:48)
3: Do Love’s First Actions
Don’t stop doing the things that you did after you first fell in love with Jesus! The lack of passion should not stop us from continuing the works we did at first.
“‘But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first.…’” (Revelation 2:4)
Keep reading your Bible, continue to pray, and continue to tell others about Him every chance you get. Continue to spread His love, and continue to grow closer to Him.
4: Never Cease Pursuing
Just because we might not feel the same enthusiasm, does not mean that we should stop pursuing Jesus.
Still spend time in the Word. Our foundation for life has to be based on truth and God’s Word is truth. “The sum of your word is truth, and every one of your righteous rules endures forever.”(Psalm 119:160)
What I have found to be quite helpful is to set a solid time each time daily to just pray and sit quietly in Jesus’ presence.
However, don’t forget to remember to seek Jesus–not the passionate feeling.
5: Be Not Discouraged!
It is going to be far from easy to chase after Jesus when we don’t feel any motivation. But remember our worth is not based on how good a Christian we are; our worth is based on Jesus’ love for us. His love is steadfast and will never change. He does not change.
When we do backtrack (because let’s be honest, we all will) we need to be gracious to ourselves. Jesus has lavished his unconditional grace upon us. Are we not also to be gracious to ourselves at times?
6: Ask for His Help
Finally, if your lack of passion is really pressing on your heart, ask the Lord to grant you a willing spirit.
I have found the words of Psalm 51:12 able to state my exact desire, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.”
When we feel very discouraged and in need of help, pray the words of Psalm 51:12.
It’s Not the End
If I had known what I know now a long time ago, it would’ve saved me much distress and worrying.
Just because the fiery passion for loving Jesus may vanish does not mean that we are any less of a Christian now than we were then. It does not mean that Jesus loves us any less, and it does not mean that we should stop pursuing him!
Remember, our life should be based on more than just feelings. Our foundation for our actions, love, and life must be based on truth.
“For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.” (1 Corinthians 3:11)