Man in a suit smiling confidently

Do you have the passion to follow your dreams?

What does God have in store for you?

For many of us, 2020 was a year filled with questions and very few answers and now many of us, including students and prospective students in Concordia’s virtual and online programs, the turn of the calendar provides opportunities to act on some important reminders from the past weeks of holiday celebrations. If you’re like me, you may need those messages repeated.

Since my mother was moved to a special unit for those affected by Alzheimer’s, our visits during the pandemic have been less frequent and often repetitive. With memory loss, she tends to repeat herself – a lot. Her constant question of “I wonder what God is trying to tell us?” echoes endlessly in my head and I’m truly thankful for that.  What IS God trying to tell us and what is He trying to tell you? The message I have heard through several moments over the past month may also be one that you have heard and I hope is something all of us need to hear in the New Year.

Tim Tebow’s advice for Graduates: Be passionate.

The first reminder came from the wonderful commencement address the Concordia community heard from former football hero, Tim Tebow – yes, that Tim Tebow. As evidenced in his talk, Tebow is excited and he’s passionate. In his message, he implored the graduates to be passionate and excited about their field and their future job through his father’s words to him and his brothers,

“When you love what you do and when you’re passionate and you’re willing to sacrifice, you’ll be different, boys. You’ll be unique. You’ll be contagious and people will want to follow you.”

Tim went on to add, that even more importantly than leading to success, passion for what we do leads to a God-given sense of significance that propels us through the difficult circumstances in life. As he stated, “Passion means that I care so much about something that I’m going to do it anyways, even if I’m going to suffer.”

Finding passion in unusual circumstances

On the heels of that message, I listened to several wonderful sermons during Advent that inspired all of us at Christmas to consider the excitement and joy displayed by the host of angels who appeared to announce the birth of a Savior.  Their energy for what they were doing lit up the entire sky.  Their passion inspired the shepherds to not only worship the baby in the manger but also to passionately spread the news to others!

And if that wasn’t enough, just prior to the New Year, our Concordia basketball team, of which I am so thankful to work with, returned to campus under most unusual circumstances.  By now, we would have played almost half of our games; but instead, we have barely been able to have a couple of days of non-contact, mask-wearing drills with no confirmed schedule of games. I can’t blame our players for a listless sense of purpose in their practice; but as coaches, we never tolerate it and I found myself digging into my bag of coaching tools to pull out the “Passion Speech.” I reminded our players that passion is often defined as “boundless enthusiasm” and then called upon Ralph Waldo Emerson’s famous quote:

“Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.”

The players often look at me with blank stares, but their effort and energy usually pick up.  Like me, they often need a message repeated.

Are you hearing this message?

As our world continues to be filled with conflict, discouragement, and uncertainty, God showed us His certainty through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. That same God is certain about using you for His glory. Find the passion. Make the sacrifice. God does have something in store for you! Do you have the passion to pursue it?

As you consider the path of the adult learner, visit CUAA’s Admissions for assistance and guidance in discovering your passion, achieving your individual goals as an adult learner, and finding your God-given significance in this world.

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