Monday Motivation: What’s your Motivation?

What's your Motivation?
Near the end of last week I had a very eye opening experience. We had been asking our 7 year old son, Josiah, to clean his very messy room for several days, and finally my husband told him he couldn’t come out until it was done.

It was near bedtime, and about thirty minutes had passed when Josiah came into the room and crawled up in the bed with me. This was very unusual for him, but he got right up next to me with a smile on his face and said something like “I want to spend time with you mommy.” So we cuddled and talked for about 15 minutes, and it made me feel so incredibly special.

After a while I heard my husband coming down the hall, and as soon as he saw Josiah’s room he started asking where he was and why it wasn’t clean yet. Then it hit me: Josiah wasn’t spending time with me just because he wanted to be near me, he was spending time with me because it served his own purpose. He didn’t want to finish cleaning his room, and he saw a way out.

I know with all my heart that Josiah loves me dearly, and that he would never do anything to intentionally hurt me, but as soon as I realized what his true motive was it broke my heart a little. I turned over and cried because something that I thought had been so special had turned into something that hurt me deeply.

Then God spoke to my heart and revealed to me that this is how He feels when we come to Him over and over again, not because we want to simply spend time with Him or learn more about Him, but because we want or need something. It’s like we are only using God to our advantage. We might still be praying and talking to him, but our motive is all wrong.

“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don’t get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motive, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” -James 4: 1-3

What motive do we have when we approach the throne of God? Are we praying for His will, or are we using Him only to get what we want? I know how I felt after I learned the real reason my son wanted to spend time with me. I wonder how God feels knowing our hearts and motives all along.

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    • About the Author
    • avatar
    • Erin Gutowski
    • A wife and mother of three who is passionate about serving those around her. She is currently a college student and plans on using her degree to work with non-profit organizations in the area.

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