I was recently singing Victoria Orenze’s ‘Brooding’ song, and for anyone who hasn’t heard it, I permit you to stop this blog post here, go and listen and come back and continue.
Really. Go listen to the song.
In that song, she speaks of Light brooding over every darkness and confesses light to shine in every place where darkness exists.
Her verses aren’t very much related to the light theme, but are all still relevant to the overall song.
A line in the verse reads ‘Come purify my passions, come and make us new’.
And I’ve listened to that song for a number of times, but I haven’t quite understood that line till recently, when I was singing it on my own and I got hit with the reality in that line.
I’m sure we can all agree that we’re human beings created with passions, we hear people say ever so often, “I have a passion for…”, “I am passionate about..” and on and on relating to passion.
The dictionary describes passion as ‘strong and barely controllable emotion’.
It is actually something so powerful in every human being and for the majority of us, our passions cannot be hidden, not as a result of a deliberate attempt to make it visible, but because it is what it is, a passion.
Here’s the carveat with this ‘barely controllable emotion’, they are not immune to impurities or attacks and i’ll explain what I mean.
That you have an innate passion to or for something or someone does not automatically make it pure or mean it to always be borne from the best motives and intentions. Our passions can be skewed, manipulated and infiltrated. That it is something borne from the depth of our being doesn’t make it immune to attacks which explains the line in that song to ‘Purify our passions…’
I was thinking further about this and more subjectively to my life and I began to see how important this prayer is.
We live in a world where people are celebrated for the good they do, the value they add and the processes they simplify.
People are rewarded and given accolades for the good done, and because we’re human beings needing acceptance and approval, we inhabit in the praises and the accolades that come our way and sometimes, in the process, forget the purpose and aim of the action from the beginning.
In a recent conversation I had with some ladies, it became apparent that before we do anything in life, whether or not you realise it, you answer the question why?
Why am I about to have lunch? because I am hungry.
Why am I about to go for my lecture? because I need the knowledge that will be passed across to sit my exams and do my coursework.
There’s always a why to answer and when our why is defeated, we either don’t do whatever it is, slack in it or do it, but for ulterior motives.
Our passions can be infiltrated with the thoughts of the gifts, accolades and wishes of this world. We can reduce our passions to living it out just for what is coming at the end of it, and so it becomes less about the innate driving force and more about what we can get out of it, a process the world calls black mail.
We blackmail our own passions in order to get the accolades of society.
I don’t think you need me to say how dangerous this is, but what I can say is that it is an intentional and conscious process.
It would require answering the why before you do anything and also praying daily that God should purify your passions.
It is a lesson we remember from one of the girls in Bad girls of the bible, that whenever we choose to do something or be something because ‘there is something in it for us‘, it might be good to check within ourselves if we’re sabotaging the God-given passions within us.