Recently in New Brunswick at Hopewell Rocks, a local “wonder of nature” collapsed. Elephant Rock was a part of flowerpot formations that draw many tourists to the area. The CBC reported, ” An estimated 200 tonnes of rock from one of the iconic flowerpot formations came tumbling down early on Monday (March 14, 2016) morning after the tide went out.”
Although people are disappointed in the destruction of the landmark, it really is not that much of a surprise. Other like events have taken place in recent years in the area. In 2015, in Nova Scotia the Long Island Sea Arch collapsed in similar fashion. Scientists aren't baffled by why it happened, there was no catalytic event that caused this to take place. It was simply the effects of time and erosion. Slowly but surely, time takes its toll.
Slowly but surely, time takes its toll.
The negative effects of the progression of time are easy to see. In many regards they do not surprise us. If I don't maintain my lawn and gardens, the grass becomes long and the flowerbeds are over run by weeds. If i don't watch what I eat and exercise, I will get fatter. If I don't change the oil in my car or maintain it, my vehicle breaks down. Negligence has a cummulative effect. It may not be immediately seen, but eventually, as scripture says, “You will reap what you sow”.
A new years resolution of mine this year has been to floss my teeth. My pattern in the past was that I would not floss all year, but when I knew my annual appointment was coming, I would floss like crazy, in hopes that they would not notice. Every year they would see through my charade and give me the flossing lecture. This year i'm determined to not get the flossing pep talk. It's been hard. My preference would be the path of laziness. It takes diligence to curb the negative trend of time and negligence.
It takes diligence to curb the negative trend of time and negligence.
One area that I have noticed it is difficult to maintain on my spiritual journey is enthusiasm. The Apostle Paul, told us in Romans 12:11 to be, “Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervour, serving the Lord.” God desires that we maintain a high level of enthusiasm as we serve Him. It really does takes diligence to curb the negative trend of time and negligence. Here are six ideas on on helping you live and serve with enthusiasm.
Six Ways to Live and Serve With Enthusiasm
- Repent: If I am driving my vehicle towards a destination and I realize that I am going in the wrong direction, to keep moving forward, full steam ahead, would be counter-productive. Repentance is the point where you stop and get yourself turned in the right direction. Tell God, you are sorry and decide to move in the right direction.
- Establish Positive Daily Habits: Athletes know the benefits of daily habits. The have a very disciplined regime of behaviours to help them move toward their goals. The Bible tells us that disciplines such as bible reading, prayer, fasting, meditation and solitude, will help us develop a more intimitate relationship with God. Intimacy leads to enthusiasm.
- Get Rest and Exercise: God was so keen on the idea of rest, that he established it in the ten commandments (Exodus 20). Sleep problems are having a huge impact in North American society. It is hard to be enthused about anything, when you are exhausted. Get some sleep.
- Don't Let Any Bitterness Take Root: Hebrews 12:15 says, “See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.” A bitter root is usually something that happens on your spiritual journey that negatively effects your service to God. Often times it is relational in nature. Somone says or does something that we took offence to. John Bevere calls it the “Bait of Satan”, in his book by the same title. We must daily go on a weeding mission to keep bitterness from taking root, because it is an enthusiasm and fellowship killer.
- Feed Your Mind and Soul: Read a book, listen to some worship music, set your mind on things above.
- Spend Time With Spiritually Enthusiastic People: 1 Corinthians 15:33 states: “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character.'”. The opposite is true as well. Positive influences can be of great help. If my spiritual life is getting stale, find some spiritually exciting people to hang out with.
Time make take its toll on our spiritual life, but we don't have to let it destroy our enthusiasm, if we live with dilligence. Remember what the apostle Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 15:58. “Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”