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Good Coffee and Zeal Take Some Work

During my recent trips I have been on the lookout for some really good, different coffee to take home and enjoy. You can find “brands” of coffee in every local coffee shop you go into as you travel, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are any good. I will always order a coffee and ask which one they used that they are selling so that I know I am drinking what I might be buying. This means I like to try as many local coffee shops as possible in order to find the best coffee to purchase. As you can imagine, this takes work. It takes finding the shop, getting to the shop, ordering and relaxing and enjoying the coffee. It also takes gumption to reach out to the coffee shop managers and discuss the coffee their selling. Most places boast their roast. (haha, I made that up!) But, others you must enquire about. This is not something that can be rushed. It takes some dedicated time and effort, or zeal (energy or enthusiasm in pursuit of an objective), in order to do this task correctly. It is a job I take seriously because it brings me joy and when I find that great roast, I can buy it for my friends as well.

Having a zeal for the Lord is much like this great coffee task, although, much more important. Yes, I choose to put this much energy into coffee because it brings me joy, but when it comes to everlasting life, it really does nothing for me. Romans 12:11 tells us, “Do not lack diligence in zeal; be fervent in the Spirit; serve the Lord.” (CSB) Having this type of zeal for the Lord is meant to carry over into your everyday life as well. This type of zeal is not just when you are doing work in your Christianity or doing work you believe is “for” God. Our walk in our everyday life should always be to show God to a hurting world and to bring all praise and glory to Him, and our zeal for Him and this work should reflect in everything we do.

In Exodus 35, Moses is instructing the Israelites on the blueprints and steps of building the tabernacle. This was important instruction from God in order to build a place where they could properly worship the God of the Universe. Exodus 35:31 says, “He has filled him with God’s Spirit, with wisdom, understanding, and ability in every kind of craft” (CSB) This means that God’s Spirit filled each person that was asked to work on the tabernacle. Each had a talent that was given to them by God and they were to use that talent in working with others and teaching others as well. This zeal was done for the Lord, but not to gain anything from Him, only because the Lord had been so good to them, they wanted to put energy and effort into the work.

The people who built the tabernacle for the Lord had a tremendous zeal for their work and they worked with willing hearts. But what happens when you, too, are working for the Lord but sometimes lack the zeal to keep going? Maybe you are not excited about the work that God has asked you to do. Maybe you want to be stirred up, but it has gotten difficult and you have lost your zeal for a time. Maybe you have searched for the best coffee and have continued to be given cold, stale, uncoffee or coffee that touts its “great dark flavor”, but all you get is dull, light-colored water. Here are a few suggestions that may help in rekindling your zeal and help get you stirred up to boiling in your walk with the Lord.

To begin, take a good look at who you are hanging out with. My friend in Alaska, whom I just visited, found a wonderful blend of local roasted coffee for me and just hanging with her made me continue my zeal for a good cup. She also has a tremendous, growing faith in the Lord and we get to have good conversation about his love and grace whenever we get together. When you stay around people who are excited about the things of God before long you will begin to have a zeal to behave in your everyday life like you do in your Christian walk (which should be your everyday life). The people you hang with, the ones who stay positive in the face of difficult times, the ones who speak positive words when work and the boss get overwhelming, they will help bring your zeal back. Follow the complainers and you, too, will be a complainer, not stirred up for Christ.

Next, if your everyday life is lacking zeal for your work and doesn’t show a fervor for what will glorify Christ, decide to take action about the way you feel rather than just wishing it were different. If you truly want a zeal that will shine through your everyday life you should be willing to do fervent work to make it happen. MacLaren’s Exposition of Holy Scripture on Bible Hub says this regarding Romans 12:11, “And surely, surely there cannot be any genuine Christianity-certainly there cannot be any deep Christianity-which is not fervent.” Your Christianity is not something that just happens at church. The fervor and zeal of living for Christ happens at every moment. Take action, do something to restore your zeal, or if you never had it, take action to find a way to receive it. Maybe that means you join a book study that keeps you focused on your zeal for the Lord. Can't find one? Start your own! There are people in your community that are desiring the same zeal you are. I have a small group that meets one time a week to discuss one chapter read. I also belong to a group that meets one time a month to share their joy in the Lord. I have an accountability group. I attend a Bible study one day a week and church on Sunday. Hebrews 10: 23-25 says, "Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near. All these things help me when my zeal begins to fade. I am sure if you spoke to God about it, he would show you a way to get started.

Moving on, if you are truly hoping to have a zeal for the Lord in your prayer life, Bible study, work place, marriage, relationships, avoid being passive and lazy. A person who lives this way waits for someone or something to move them and “give” them the zeal they really want. God tells us that we should be led by his Holy Spirit that is in us, not by the outside world. If we are not willing to listen to the Holy Spirit and follow his prompting, we will never begin to live the life of a Christian with zeal, neither in our everyday life or in our Christianity. Expect God to use you, listen to the Holy Spirit and be ready to act upon his urging.

In all this, you must keep God in your sights. Keep him present in your life. For example, your prayer time should not be your morning or night time routine although those routines are important; prayer and having conversation with God is something that should be ongoing throughout your day. Keeping yourself in the presence of God will help you stay grounded in him and it will help you to stay focused on who he made you to be. Yearn for God’s presence in every part of your day. Listening to worship music and reading books that keep you focused on God and your life will help you stay present.

When you have this zeal, you will have the urge to always be sharing God with others. Sharing how He has worked in your life and sharing what you see him doing everywhere will attract others. They will see the fire you have for Christ and want to be more like him. Your fire will set them on fire.

The word fervor, which is a synonym for zeal, comes from the Latin word, “to glow”. When your zeal for the Lord is at its best, you certainly will glow. Everything about you will be noticed. You will have a joy that shows in your face, your actions, your speech. People will be drawn to you as they were to Christ. Zeal is hot and glowing.

If you are beginning to think that this is just to impossible to do or have every single minute of your life, you are exactly right. It’s a tough one, but we are serving a God who deserves the work we put into it.

Just like the work I enjoy putting into finding the best cup of coffee, this work should be work you don’t mind doing on a daily basis, just as Christ does for you. I am certain, He has a zeal for you. Having this zeal, puts your love for Christ into action.

You now have a few ideas and areas to look at in your life regarding your zeal for the Lord. This is a good place to start. Find that good cup of coffee, sit down with God and talk to him about your zeal and listen to his Spirit talk to you about your next steps.

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Theresa Marler
Theresa Marler
Sep 07, 2023

I feel like I'm on the path to having zeal for my Lord. I'm am excited to talk about him with people I never would have, I am meeting with my Godly ladies and learning his word, I listen to his music every now and then and am filled with so much love, and I pray all through my day and just have conversations with God. I am on my way!! Loving my journey ❤️


Desiree' Varner
Desiree' Varner
Aug 01, 2023
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

I don't know how I misse this post but it sure was a pleasure to read. After I got done I said outloud, "Okay Susan. I'm going." And now my kids think I'm crazy(crazier?). Thanks for the nudge.


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