"The doldrums flourish when we're focused on doing rather than being." -Chris Hodges, Fresh Air
The christian life can become dull and meaningless is we settle for trying to fulfill our duty instead of developing a dynamic relationship with the Triune God. Most Christ-followers know the distinction between christian religion and a relationship with Jesus. But, we are all susceptible to spiritual fatigue. It can set in and slowly destroy a once white-hot spiritual life that defaults into lifeless obligations or patterned routines. Some christians can even experience spiritual depression.
It's not uncommon for christians to experience the 'doldrums.' Taken from the root word meaning 'dull' or 'lifeless,' the expression 'in the doldrums' was used to describe the state of being bored and restless or in a slump. Sailors named a specific region along the equator where weather always seemed to illustrate this lifeless condition. The Doldrums are known as the Intertropical Convergence Zone. (ITCZ) Normal trade winds converge in this zone along the equator cancelling each other out, creating a still windless dead zone. This collision produces convectional storms producing some of the world's heaviest precipitation. With no wind to move the storms along, the storms keep ships stuck in one place. Some ships were stuck permanently enduring the storms until they wrecked.
Maybe it's been a while since you felt wind in your sails or felt fired up about anything. There can be many contributing factors to experiencing the doldrums. Lots of us have drifted into a spiritual no-man's land. But, if we only focus on external influences, we can end up on a treadmill of disappointment. Our Ignite series begins this weekend with an introductory message about what can be the igniting force that will bring a vitality back into your spiritual life. You may want to read a book or engage with the teaching series on Right Now Media by Pastor Chris Hodges. He wrote a book called Fresh Air: Trading Stale Spiritual Obligation for a Life-altering, Energizing, Experience-it-everyday Relationship with God. You can watch an introduction to the book and series here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVqj-1WIhNA. See you in church this Sunday.
"We were really crushed and overwhelmed, and feared we would never live through it. We felt we were doomed to die and saw how powerless we were to help ourselves; but that was good, for then we put everything into the hands of God, who alone could save us, for he can even raise the dead. And he did help us and saved us from a terrible death; yes, and we expect him to do it again and again." -2 Corithians 1:8-10 The Message