“Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord” (Romans 12:11).
As a college student living in an apartment I learned how to cook for myself when I had to. As you can well imagine my culinary presentations were not very sophisticated. French toast was about the only think “continental” about my cuisine. I did however develop the habit of cooking things in a hurry. The burner controls on my little apartment stove had one setting … HIGH. To my way of thinking, if cooking something on medium was good, cooking on high must be better. Of course in those days I presented many burnt offerings. I learned to scrape the burned parts off of food and eat it anyway.
Fast forward to today. On the rare occasions that I cook something in the kitchen, I regret to say that I have not kicked the habit of cooking things on high. Splatters of bacon grease mark the ceiling of our kitchen as testimony to this fact. Nan is extraordinarily gifted in the kitchen, and panics whenever I enter her domain for the purpose of cooking something for myself.
While bringing something to a boil quickly in the kitchen is usually not the best idea, the Bible teaches us that when it comes to our zeal in loving and serving God we should turn up the heat. When Paul admonished the Roman believers to keep their “spiritual fervor,” the word he uses literally means “to bring to a boil.” The present active verb means to keeping on being fervent in one’s spirit. (more…)