For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. — Philippians 1:21

“There is no passion to be found playing small–in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” -Nelson Mandela

The original root of the word passion means to suffer. When most of us think about passion, we think about going after what we like. Jesus and his followers displayed a passion that took them through extreme suffering. True passion results in a level of suffering.

Many of us want purpose without pain, but pain helps cultivate character and passion in our lives. When we experience real passion, we are willing to suffer for it. Parents share a passion for seeing their children succeed and for keeping them safe. Parents have been known to run into burning buildings to save their children. Parents have given up careers and comforts to sacrifice, so their children have every opportunity to reach their full potential. Passion will cause us to take risks regardless of the reward.

Passion is developed through experiences. Passion happens when we have personal experiences or when we see the experiences of others. When I saw the videos of George Floyd and Ahmaud Aurbery, my passion for justice grew. When I see young people in my community with no support and hope, my passion for building bridges of hope and access grows. Passion is not a one-time experience; it must be cultivated on a consistent basis.

Many times, passion gets stirred in us because of compassion. Compassion is what we feel when we see someone who is hurting and broken, and we begin to understand their story. This compassion we feel turns to passion because we are outraged and want to see a new story. You want to see a different story for them and for others who have had similar experiences.


What are you passionate about? What can you do to fuel your passion?