It has been a while since my last post. I have started teaching at the collegiate level, so that has consumed my time as my mindset shifts from industry to teaching. Teachers, I have an all new respect for what you do. God Bless you all.
In James 4:1-3, James presents that wars and conflicts among his people and others come about because people act on their passions. The fruit of this action is emptiness and destruction – in fact, the opposite of the intention of this action in the first place. James was not talking about all passion. Passion oriented toward God, His Church and one’s salvation is righteous passion and brings about love and the betterment of individuals and society as a whole.
James even goes on to say that there are reasons why one’s prayer(s) do not get answered. He says, “You ask but do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” So, even in prayer, the most holy thing we do each day, do we pray for things that will bring us closer to Jesus and our salvation? Does the “me” thing creep into our prayer? “If I only had (insert the thing/amount here), I will really know that You love me/my life will be complete etc.”
What really causes your day to go south on you? For me, that happens when things occur or materialize that I did not want to happen, or what I really wanted/thought should have/deserved to happen did not. How did this affect my passions; my passion and desire for a nice peaceful day? To me, this adds and builds to frustration and angst as I fight against those new things, seeing these new things as impositions, speed bumps in my day, rather than things that I need to do to properly serve my students, school, my family and my God. My passion to obtain peace within my day has thus robbed me of that peace.
I am at my best when my passions lead me toward Jesus and my salvation. Peace sapping trouble materializes when my passions are disordered. In the 3 chapter of James he says, “Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice.” In other words, the circumstance causing me to have a bad day and being a poor light to the world around me happens when my personal passions are disordered. When my prayers are not answered, or answered in a totally different way, it is probably because my prayer was disordered in the first place – “me” passions.
Have a great day! Pray glorious prayers! Orient your passions toward Christ and you will find great joy and peace. Amen.
 James 4:3
 James 3:16