I love the word zeal but you don't hear it very often. It means enthusiasm, diligence, eagerness, passion and commitment. The Macmillan Dictionary defines it as great energy, effort, and enthusiasm. The other word in this verse that you don't hear very often is fervour. Its meaning is similar - a very strong feeling or enthusiasm. The Greek word for fervour refers to something boiling and bubbling over.
The Apostle Paul was instructing Christians to be energetic, enthusiastic, passionate, eager, diligent and committed as they served God. I see a lot of zealous people at football and basketball games (not cricket so much). But I don't see a lot of zealous people at church. That must make God sad that we get so excited about a bunch of sweaty people chasing a ball around, but we don't get as excited about praising, worshiping and serving God.
In Revelation chapter three, God told the church at Laodicea, "because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth." God doesn't want us to be lukewarm or even simmering (slowly bubbling) - he wants us to be boiling, bubbling wildly. Where do you sit on the zeal scale? Are you lukewarm - not passionate at all about serving Jesus? Are you simmering - kind of passionate? Or, are you boiling rapidly - living on fire for Jesus? I want to be in that last category?
Here are some tips to help you be zealous and fervent:
Short and sweet inspirations for Christian teen girls.