Zeal for God

“…for the zeal of Your house has consumed me…”

— Psalm 69:9

There was a man who was watching sailboats out on a large lake. The breeze was brisk and the sails were filled, and he noticed one boat did not seem to be moving. He asked a friend, “That boat does not seem to be moving. Why not? The sails are full.” And his friend replied, “It is anchored.”

A lot of Christians may come to church and put up their sails; they may even read the Bible. Yet they are anchored into some sin, some carnal habit, something they refuse to give up. Thus, they make no progress in their spiritual life.

Christ would have us to grow in our zeal for Him. If the divine principle is within us, if we truly have that which comes from God, it will produce within us a zeal, a flame, and a fire. A flame consumes everything about it. It will continue to grow, transforming everything it touches into its own nature of fire, but a painted flame, a painted fire, will never grow.

As Jim Elliot said, “He makes his ministers a flame of fire.” Let’s ask ourselves: Are we ignitable? Are we weak? Yes, weak in ourselves, but strong in God. May our prayer be that cry of young David Brainerd, the missionary to the American Indians, who said, “O God, would that I were a flaming fire in Thy service.” Wouldn’t it be a fantastic thing if ten thousand sparks would spread out from our churches and set afire our communities for Jesus Christ?

Father, forgive us that we can be wildly enthusiastic about those things that interest us here on earth, while remaining diffident to You. Give us strength for today, Lord, to love You above all…