by Rick Warren
“Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:11-12 (NIV)
"When you make other people's problems your problems, God will take care of yours in turn."
Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Nothing great is ever accomplished in life without enthusiasm.” You have to have a passion to see something great happen. That’s why you need to nurture your enthusiasm if you want to change.
If you say, “Well, I kind of, sort of, maybe want to change” it isn’t going to happen. If you say, “Well, I’d like to change in my spare time” it isn’t going to happen. But if you are passionate about your goal it will become reality.
Unfortunately, it’s easy to lose your enthusiasm. So how do you maintain it? Speaking from personal experience, it takes more than positive thinking or psycho cybernetics. It takes God in your life.
The word enthusiasm comes from two Greek words. The word en which means “in” and the word theos which is Greek for “God.” To be enthusiastic means to be “in God.” When you get in God, you have enthusiasm deep in your heart.
The Apostle Paul tells us how to be enthusiastic in Romans 12:11-12, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”
“Joyful in hope” – even when things go wrong, hang on to your hope in God and it will give you joy.
“Patient in affliction” – Remain patient because you know God will use whatever you’re going through for good.
“Faithful in prayer” – When tough times come, you have a choice: you can either pray continually or you can panic. You can either be on your knees giving it to God, or you can give up.