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What Fires Your Passion?

Today as a staff we worked through how our schedules should reflect our desire for self-leadership. In essence, what things do I need to do on a daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly basis in order for me to be the very best I can be as one who vocationally serves God through the local church? Most of us had similar thoughts – eating well, exercise, retreats, and the like filled up the conversation. But in thinking about what activities I would add into my life, bigger questions rose to the surface of mind, not the least of which was: What keeps me passionate in life?

In other words, what things do I do that fire me up to live the life I live? For me, I can’t think of very many personal evils worse than living a dispassionate life. It’s not how I’m wired at all. I love living with an intensity, an edge…and being fired up about it all is simply par for the course. Call it hyper or being too revved up, it doesn’t matter to me. I’d much rather be faulted for being too amped up than coming in day after day with barely a pulse. For me, living passionately is a vital cog in the machine of my self-leadership.

So I began to write down things that throw fuel on the fire of my passion for life. I’ll give you a couple that I wrote down…

1. Hanging out with “Soul Friends”.
The irony of ministry is that for very good reasons, while a pastor is around tons of people he can still be very lonely (I’ll leave that for a potential post). Often, he will need to find close friendships outside the circle of his congregation. Now I should sayI feel that I am very, very good friends with many on my staff. In fact, I would consider a handful of them “soul friends” – friends who no matter where you are or what you’re doing, almost always energize you. However, with that being said, I believe most of those friendships will come from the outside than inside of a pastor’s congregation. That’s been the case for me. But no matter how those relationships come about I’ve seen one truth demonstrably projected over the course of my life, when I hang out with “soul friends” I find myself more rejuvenated and impassioned for life. They are not optional. When I have time with them spaced too far out in the rhythm of my life, things go south for me.

2. Being a part of a “Learning Community”.
I love to learn. My day is filled with learning. I can’t stop it. I just do it. I can’t escape the fact that I’m an eternal student. In fact, I really like that about me. The world feels much more alive to me knowing that there’s so much out there to know. When it comes to God and his Church you can multiply that feeling a bazillion times! And what I’ve learned over the course of my life is that I like learning with others. I like journeying through issues and ideas with fellow pilgrims. It’s stimulating to me. It fires me up and gets my passion engine running hot. I can’t explain necessarily why, I just know it does. In fact, one of the reasons I love the leadership team I work with is that they are learners too! So if I know we’re going to go into a room to discuss how this idea or that issue is going to affect, for example, how we make disciples at our church, I’m good to go for the long haul! Frankly, it’s hard for me to let those things go when our time together has concluded. I like learning with others!

As I look over how I can better lead myself I know one thing – I need to have these types of experiences dotted throughout my year. That’s probably a better indicator on how well I’ll “perform” than how much sleep I get or how well I eat (not that those are unimportant). I want to live life passionately!

What feeds the fire of your passion for life?

Picture of Yancey Arrington
Dr. Yancey C. Arrington is an eighth generation Texan, Acts 29 Network and Houston Church Planting Network fan, and Teaching Pastor at Clear Creek Community Church in the Bay Area of Houston. He is also author of Preaching That Moves People and TAP: Defeating the Sins That Defeat You, and periodically writes for Acts 29 and The Gospel Coalition.

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