Enthusiasm is it’s one of the greatest words in the English language. It is a word that is built deeply into the spirit of man. The word enthusiasm is derived from two little Greek words, en and theos, with theos being the Greek word for God. So "enthusiasm" literally means, in its root concept, "full of God." Maybe that’s why enthusiastic people are so often creative and joyful!
The Bible uses several different words for this idea of being filled with enthusiasm: ardor, zeal, wholeheartedness, or my favorite eager. When you’re eager, you’re enthusiastic. In the New Testament. We are told
1 Peter 5:2 NIV Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve; (emphasis mine)
1 Corinthians 14:12 NIV So it is with you. Since you are eager for gifts of the Spirit, try to excel in those that build up the church. (emphasis mine)
2 Corinthians 8:11 NIV Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means. (emphasis mine)
Romans 8:19 NIV For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. (emphasis mine)
Titus 2:11-14 NIV For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good. (emphasis mine)
God will help you maintain enthusiasm. He will help you overcome all difficulties, all tragedies, all sorrows, all heartaches; He will give you victory. The word itself tells us that people with enthusiasm will be full of God and will, consequently, create a better world and have a better life individually. Enthusiasm makes life exciting and creative; enthusiasm helps a person accomplish things.
Enthusiastic people are Triumphant people.
2 Corinthians 2:14 NIV But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere.
By Rick Warren
In order to reach your goals, you have to figure out how to maintain your enthusiasm over the long haul.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Nothing great is ever accomplished without enthusiasm.” I believe that with all of my heart. I have found it to be true in my life. You’ve got to have passion, you’ve got to have enthusiasm, or you’re never going to make it to the finish line.
Most people would consider me an enthusiastic person, and I am. But I haven’t been an enthusiastic person for a week or a month. My enthusiasm has not waned over a year or five or 10 years. I have been consistently enthusiastic about the goals that I’ve set for more than 30 years.
How do you do that? How do you stay enthusiastic day after day in spite of delays and difficulties and dead ends and problems and pressures and criticisms? How do you stay enthusiastic for more than 30 years?
Positive thinking is not enough. Pulling yourself up by your psychological bootstraps is not enough. Talking yourself into optimism is not enough.
The way you stay enthusiastic for a lifetime is found in the word “enthusiasm.” The word “enthusiasm” comes from the Greek word en theos. En is the Greek word for the English word “in.” Theos is the Greek word for “God.” So en theos means to be “in God.”
When you get in God, you will be enthusiastic. It’s the kind of enthusiasm that isn’t affected by the economy or the weather or your circumstances. It’s eternal because you are tied to the eternal God. You are in Christ.
Paul tells us how to do this in Romans 12:11-12. He says, “Never be lacking in zeal,but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” (NIV).
If you want to reach your goals this year, you need to get God’s power by being joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer.
Pray this prayer today:
“Dear God, I don’t want to go another day without you in my life, controlling every part of my heart. I offer you my body. I dedicate myself to you. In light of all you’ve done for me, I give myself as a living sacrifice to you as a spiritual act of worship.
“I humbly admit that I need help. I want you to help renew my mind. Help me to think the way you want me to think. Please forgive me for my pride. I don’t want to think more highly of myself than I should. My faith needs to grow, and I need your help to set goals that can be measured so I can manage them. Forgive me for trying to change on my own. “I want to fill my life with love. I want to fill my life with you. Help me to get group support. Help me to take delight in honoring other people, to focus on giving my life away so that you can take care of my needs. I want to nurture my enthusiasm by being in you. Help me to be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, and faithful in prayer. I give myself to you. In your name I pray. Amen.”
Editor’s Note: A Prayer For taken from the Daily Hope devotional, How to Stay Enthusiastic for a Lifetime written by Rick Warren.