Thought of the Day October 30, 20174 Zeal

By 9:31 AM

Growth in the Spirit is the fruit of a life of zeal for the Lord. In the letter to the Church of Laodicea (Rev 3:14-22) the complaint of Jesus was lukewarmness and compromise in the Christian life. "I know your deeds. I know you are neither hot nor cold. How I wish you were one or the other--hot or cold! But because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spew you out of my mouth" (Rev 3:15-16).

Wow! What a statement for the Lord to say to any of us who have been saved and given a share in his own divine life. The lukewarm are those who received the seed of life sown by Jesus but who have let the thorns, weeds and brambles of life so choke this new life that it will eventually die unfruitful. The Lukewarm are those who through their own choice never go beyond the initial teachings about Christ nor advance to maturity (cf Heb 6:1). The Lukewarm are those who "have been enlightened and have tasted the heavenly gift and become sharers in the Holy Spirit and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come" (Heb 6:4-5), but then fall away.

What Jesus is looking for in each of us is zeal for the house of the Lord. We are called to be on fire for the Lord. That's what zeal means. When and where we find ourselves falling short, growing lukewarm, slacking in fervor, becoming complacent, no longer excited about the life of the Spirit generously given to us, we are called to be renewed and re-energized. We need to earnestly pray for a fresh outpouring of the grace of Pentecost in our lives. We need to pray for the fulfillment of the prophesy of Ezekiel over the dead bones. In the words to the Church in Laodicea: " Buy from (the Lord) gold refined by fire if you would be truly rich. Buy white garments in which to be clothed, if the shame of your nakedness is to be covered. Buy ointment to smear on your eyes, if you would see once more" (Rev 3:18). The gold refined by fire is a heart which is recommitted to the Lord. The white garment is the heart repented. The ointment for the eyes is the heart humble and true. And with this grace we are called once more to go forth in the power of the Spirit with zeal in our hearts to live as Jesus commands.

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