A Life of Passion

by Vinita Hampton Wright on 02/03/2014

red calla liliesWhen we consider all the elements that must come together for us to exist as human beings on this planet, in this universe, it seems a pitiful, tragic shame that we could go through our days and years not appreciating life. Yes, “life” for some people is such a struggle that they have pretty good reason not to appreciate a lot of what they go through. But even for those people, something must be going on inside for them to survive, even thrive. I think that something is passion.

In fact, some of the most passionate people in this world have had a rough time of it—they don’t have much material wealth, they’ve suffered great harm and loss, they don’t have much power over their situations—yet they dive into life and actually experience joy and hope. How is that? And some people who have everything they need are bored out of their minds and do not relate much to a passionate view of life.

For the purposes of this post/discussion, “passion” is a deep and satisfying engagement with life. Passion makes it possible to live joyfully, purposefully, hopefully, and energetically.

A person who leads a life of passion:

  • does not take for granted her blessings, but names them and gives thanks for them.
  • takes responsibility for himself and does the work he needs to do.
  • allows a full range of emotion appropriate to what she’s going through, because emotions help her understand what’s happening and how it affects her.
  • opens himself to genuine relationships with others. This doesn’t mean that he’s necessarily an extravert who has many friends, but he is attentive to the friendships he does have.
  • works to discover her gifts, to develop them, and use them in whatever way she can.
  • sees beyond his own life and concerns to the world around him, daring to engage in the issues that influence quality of life for those beyond his private circle.
  • enjoys life. Celebrates. Laughs. Cries. Asks questions. Listens.
  • gets involved in ways that fit who he or she is. Not afraid to make a mess or encounter complexity.
  • moves by way of dream and vision rather than regret and fear.

So, what do you think? What for you makes a life of passion?

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

WriterLinda (Linda G) February 3, 2014 at 8:10 am

See and hold the joy in every moment even when you have to look past the stupidity around us. As an effective nonogenarian (going on 40) said to me recently, “Don’t look at the sad stuff.” Even death holds its humour. No it’s not the least bit funny, think deeper.

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Gail K February 3, 2014 at 10:25 am

Freedom from fear. It’s tough to live passionately when fear binds you. But oh, the joy of letting go your fears, even little by little, one by one.

Thanks for this post.

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Kathy W February 3, 2014 at 4:24 pm

Amen!!!

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Grace February 3, 2014 at 11:41 am

Finally discovering that, yes, it can be done: living with passion about the ones and the things we care about. Enjoying the freedom that comes with “certain” maturity; the realization that we were created to enjoy the things we feel passionate about and that it’s okay to let go of things and persons that disrupt our own journey. Freedom to express and share our love and our innermost desires. God is good! Allowing myself to discover his will has been the greatest experience.

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Judy February 3, 2014 at 11:50 am

In comparing life’s earthly stages to the seasons, I am in the winter of mine, turning 75 this month. Even with the snow and freezing weather, It is a season of boundless blessings, deep gratitude, love, and passion. And it’s a season of hope for under the blanket of white isn’t there a crocus ready to bloom? I have days when I long for my husband John’s physical presence to celebrate life’s goodness with me, but daily I celebrate the gift of his spirit fused with mine. In this second half of life, as Richard Rohr names it, when we are able to surrender our pain, our worries, our losses, our human expectations of self and others, new graces come to lift us and make us aware of the beauty of the present moment in the gift of the people in our lives, in all of nature that surrounds us, and most of all, the Christ who lives within. Out of this awareness of Jesus’ presence comes the joy, love, and passion of life.

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Vinita Hampton Wright February 3, 2014 at 2:11 pm

Thanks so much for this–words of encouragement and hope. Peace-Vinita

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Kathy W February 3, 2014 at 4:30 pm

I love your thoughts, Judy and I try daily to live-in “awareness of Jesus’ presence” because I too believe that brings all good~”joy, love, and passion (for) life”. Thank you
I’m 68, so winter is pretty comfy for me too and I am grateful!

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patti February 3, 2014 at 12:13 pm

I agree with all the above. And Gail Yes In my experience it has been the desire to live passionately but I noticed the real freedom of that journey start when I began to let go of what I was carrying (fears ) and focus on where I was going or want to go and want to build (The kingdom of God) and to be still and silent enough to listen to discover what Gods will is for not what my dreams or wants are or my will for me but I want to simply and humbly do what God wills for me. Great Post thanks.

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Pat February 3, 2014 at 1:33 pm

I agree with Gail about freedom from fear, this is something I have worked on for many years, and continue to grow . Mypassion has always been caring for people, expecially children thus my career as a pediatric nurse. When one is accepted and trusted by a child it is like a day filled with a glorious sunrise all day. I worked with underprivileged children and seeing all that they had to overcome each day taught me lessons in gratitude. My passion continues to be people, connecting in person or on phone, that is what makes my world sing. and for this I give thanks

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tess martinez February 3, 2014 at 5:04 pm

Passion is a God given gift. It is seeing and nurturing life life beyond the ordinary. He who has passion in life has so much grace manifested in surviving and going through life anchored in the hope that God’s great and infinite love is sufficient to overcome any obstacle. Passion is courage coupled with faith in God’s providence! I have an undying passion for life in the knowledge that God’s love for me surpasses all!!!

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patti February 5, 2014 at 6:47 pm

Tess So Well Said.

My passion is to live simply and humbly to Seek God Everyday.To Glorify God by my life, by loving and caring caring for my family by being the hands and feet of Jesus and love others. Matthew 6: 25-29 is a favorite passage of mine. Learn from the way the wildflowers grow, Trust Surrender Acknowlege my Dependence on God and Rest there Knowing he will love and care for me. I used to think finding my passion was something that had to be grand but I am learning that by following my heart and noticing the simple and ordinary times of the day, by just showing love and kindness, by finding the grace in the mess and the beauty in the chaos that In those moments God is there.

I loved when Mother Teresa said you don’t have to do great things if you do small things with Great Love. That is where my passion lies in just trying to do good and love with great faith each day.

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