Passion: Seeing Beyond the Blind Spots

Passion: Seeing Beyond the Blind Spots

Our culture is volatile. Just observe what often happens when a car accident occurs. In our present era of social media, it happens so easily for unintended or accidental incidents to “go viral.” Out come the cell phones. With social media, what might have been a simple local incident fifty years ago, can now incite a passionate global response. We were created by a passionate God to be passionate people. Jesus definitely was. We often refer to His life, death, and resurrection as “the Passion of Christ.”

What happens when our passions are not understood and they incite a wrong response?

I am reminded how often I have almost hit the car in front of me because it suddenly stopped, only for me to eventually realize there was something was in the road I couldn’t originally see. Perhaps it was an animal running across the road or debris that was in the way. The only thing I could see was my coffee cup or purse go flying in my car as I came to an abrupt stop. And I confess… my verbal responses haven’t always been pleasant ones! Similarly, social and political issues most often happen when we aren’t present. And our screens usually only show one perspective and not the whole picture. Yet, because of our human passion, we respond with an instant reaction that can ignite others’ views like a wildfire causing unrest and destruction.

Passionate responses cause disruptions.

In Luke 12:49, Jesus revealed His human nature and the burden of living in our broken world. He was both fully God and fully human and He was passionate to save us.  He knew He would be “baptized” in suffering and wished He could just get on with it – be “kindled.” Yet God’s passion for us wouldn’t let Him until all that needed to be fulfilled in prophecy was done. It required Jesus to wait and walk the walk and talk the talk and trust in God’s perfect timing. And, I might add, it wasn’t easy. It required that He bring truth, and the truth is volatile. His passion would bring division. The truth of Jesus brought would pit one against the other – families would be divided because of their inability to see clearly who He was and God’s plan.

Our humanness limits our sight.

Jesus continually spoke clearly but He had to also use stories and ask questions that brought clarity and understanding because the hard truth stopped people. His mission was to enlighten us on God’s plan for our redemption. God saw what had to be done from the inciting incident of sin in the Garden. He knew how to solve the problem because He’s God. Yet, from our blind perspective, we only saw the punishment and not God’s redemptive plan for us. Our “car” (freedom) has been forced to stop and our personal stuff is flying. For those who have allowed themselves to believe in the truth of Jesus and whose eyes have been opened, we see differently.

We don’t have to know “the why” because God sees the why.

Instead of confusion and fear when challenges happen, we’re able to relax in the uncertainty and it’s unnatural. We weren’t at the inciting incident of sin in the Garden of Eden, but we don’t have to be. The Word of God is enough to trust that He’s got us. He sees us when we find ourselves suddenly stopped in our career or in life.

But we must choose.

We can become confused and frustrated when life’s disruptions happen, or choose the “peace that surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:7). The difference? Confident rest. There’s a clarity and assurance that permeates our being, knowing that in the unknown and “the wait,” God’s perfect will is ideal, and His vision for us is best when we let Him control our gas petals.

In Luke 12:57-59, Jesus challenged those who were listening to pay attention to the time they were living in. It was the most significant time that had ever happened on Earth. He had come to save us. Today, we even document time as before Christ (BC) and after Christ’s death (AD) because His life, death, and resurrection stopped the clock and then restarted it.

The times we’re living in seem to change at light speed with unintended incidents – stops that we never could have anticipated, but still manage to disrupt our lives. Yet, God never changes. His plans will be accomplished even if they unfortunately divide families and cause disruptive “fires.” Jesus knew He was the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Jesus was confident in what He had been called to do on Earth by His Father. He willingly and passionately completed His mission, even if it incited division and disruption.

Are you willing to trust God’s plan and perspective for your life even if causes a fire?

On the Move at NRB 2022

On the Move at NRB 2022

Recently, Phil and Kathleen Cooke, co-founders of The Influence Lab, were on the move in Nashville at the annual National Religious Broadcasters Convention (NRB). NRB is an international association of Christian communicators with more than 1,100 member organizations reaching millions with the use of media. Each year Christian media and entertainment leaders meet in a national city to teach leadership and technical workshops, share updates on media policies, listen to inspirational speakers, receive media and entertainment awards, and provide communicators with the opportunity to connect over their most recent content and projects.

Phil and Kathleen were hosted on several national radio programs, podcasts and TV shows. They also met with a number of national and global leaders to talk about the mission and vision of The Influence Lab and Influence Lab Women. (Read more here: Industry Experts Talk About the Power of Documentaries.)

What is the mission and vision of The Influence Lab?

Our Mission
Recognizing we live in a media-driven culture dominated by the influence of Hollywood, we engage Christians who are involved in media, entertainment, leadership, and the arts to encourage them to align their faith with God’s Kingdom purposes and become influencers and to use their talents and skills effectively to change the global culture.

Our Vision
To cultivate Christian thought leaders involved in media, entertainment, leadership, and the arts who are passionate to elevate the voice of God’s purposes and callings and bring about positive global change for the Church and the world.

What is coming next?
Save the date for April 29th in Los Angeles and June 10th in Atlanta for the next in-person Influence Lab Women gatherings. Details coming soon!