In Philippians 1:18b-26 of Paul’s Epistle he highlights an essential element of Christian ministry, “Motivation.” Simply stated, God cares about why we do, what we do. He is concerned not only about the what comes out in behavior, but recognizes that what comes out is only a reflection of what is within. You can see this reality in Jesus own words in Luke 6:43-45.
A Tree and Its Fruit
43 “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, 44 for each tree is known by its own fruit. For figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush. 45 The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.
Examining your inner heart motivation is one of the more critical spiritual disciplines for the Christian. Far to often people are willing to excuse behavior. They might give excuses such as, “Its just been a long day at work…, I had a horrible night of sleep and I am sick…, and the list could go on. While there may be many contributing factors that influence our choice of behavior at certain moments of our lives, the Scripture declares, what is in the heart comes out. (Prov. 4:23).
Consider reading the article linked in this blog by Dr. Ed Welch. The article is entitled, Motives: Why I do the Things I Do! I believe you will find it very helpful in seeing the importance of examining your own heart motives as you live a life of worship seeking to Glory Him. Consider taking some time to read and reflect together on the importance of right motivation in your Small Group, D-Group, Husband/Wife conversations, or a just a group of friends having coffee. I hope the article will be as much of a blessing to you as it has been for me!
Pastor Josh Stephens