1 THESSALONIANS 4:5
“not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; “
I will never forget telling my son to pursue his passion, in regards to choosing a career. Passion is a good thing, if focused on the right thing. That’s why I find it so interesting that Paul used these two words, “lustful passion” here in this verse. Every word used by any of the authors of the Bible were inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16), so these words were not an accident.
“Passion” literally means to eagerly desire and want something. It can be good or bad. I have an intense passion for God’s Word. That’s good. But “lustful” is where we get the word “pathology.” It’s only used three times in Scripture, and all three times it’s bad. It refers to a lust or desire not from God. THAT’S what Paul is warning against.
I bet your little Johnny or Susie have a passion for something. If it lines up with God’s Word, encourage it. If it doesn’t, squash it now. Seriously! Don’t let an unhealthy passion for something fester in your child’s life. It will only bring sorrow and pain down the road.
As Christian parents, we want to encourage our children to pursue those healthy passions. We don’t want them chasing ungodly passions, like the world. Just as Paul warned the Thessalonians, we need to be alert to our children’s passion.
What are you pursuing today? How would God classify your passions? Are they lustful (not godly) or pure and healthy (godly)? It’s easy to figure that out. Just ask Him. He’ll tell you. If it brings Him glory, go for it. If it only brings you satisfaction and attention, you had better look closer.
My desire, O God, is to desire only You. My heart yearns for a deeper knowledge of You and a more intimate relationship. Show me how to pursue that passion and give You the glory.