I’m one of those guys who either love something with my whole heart or merely tolerate it.
I call that “passion.” Realistically, I suppose I can also call it “Part-time Apathy.”
I feel one of these ways towards most things: I dislike bills, picking weeds, washing dishes, and grocery shopping. I love video games, singing, writing, Doctor Who and Star Wars…
In short, I’m either a fanatic, or I’m mostly indifferent and utilitarian.
“Fanatic.” That’s where the word “fan” comes from.
So when I say that I was a Broncos “fan,” until two days ago, you know what I mean.
Yes, I know what you’re thinking, and you’re right. i’m one of those guys. The kind that is more of a fan when they’re winning. And you’d be right.
I was so ashamed and embarrassed after the first half I took off my jersey and contemplated burning it, to protest the spectacular lack of discernible skill shown at the one game a year that’s supposed to represent the epitome of athletic competition.
I’m a fan of a lot of things that end up not fulfilling me, and so are you. Here are 4 areas that make it plain being a fan isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
First off, our sports teams. They lose games all the time and disappoint us. We like to attach ourselves to them, in general, because there’s a feeling of pride and belonging to that particular community.
Secondly, our families. We feel a sense of belonging for our family because we are used to those people. We are raised with them, and we are essentially stuck with them. But who hasn’t had a sibling, spouse or child make us sad or fall through in their responsibility to the family in some way?
Thirdly, our coworkers. We feel a sense of comaradarie when we are engaged in a task or tasks, mutually helping each other towards a common goal. But we count on the productivity and creativity of others on a daily basis to do the right thing, or at least do the right thing often enough to succeed, and people goof up every day.
Lastly, our church. This is often times the place where we encounter the most hurt, the most betrayal, feel the most overlooked. It’s so easy to forget that church is not the place we go to be around perfect people. We go to church because we want to be around other sinners who have freedom to live better lives because of forgiveness. And because we are sinners, we hurt each other, plain and simple.
We already know that relationships with people hurt a lot of the time. This is not to say that our relationship with Jesus prevents pain. For me, at least, asking God why He doesn’t keep me from suffering is a weekly, sometimes daily exercise.
But really there’s no question that God is the only one who doesn’t cause our pain, not to mention the only one who can transform it to build our character.
For what, or who, are you a fanatic? We can turn a fanaticism for right living to advantage in our marriage. Becoming a fan of good things can turn your marriage away from “every spouse for themself” and back towards mutual sacrifice.
I’d like to get to the point where I’m only a true, consistent fanatic for Christ. And He’s slowly, patiently drawing me there.