"And do everything with love." 1 Corinthians 16:14 (NLT)
Being the smallest person in my class usually meant I was the smallest person on the soccer field or any field or court I played on for that matter. Now those who know me, you are probably smiling at this point. I would later grow up to be a Division I Athlete in two sports, but that actuality seemed like a pipe-dream in my formative years. I regularly heard from coaches and parents I was too small to be a significant athlete.
So driven by the negative voices in my head, I determined to prove them wrong. My motivation wasn't inspiration for the good of others like helping my teammates or making my parents proud. My motivation was fueled by a determination to show THEM (usually the faceless voices in my head) how wrong they were. And with the help of some, "I'll show you," built up anger, and hard work I became a top athlete.
Here's the point, we can accomplish some pretty good things for all the wrong reasons. And when we do this, it becomes more about us than the people we are supposed to be helping and Jesus' name, which we are supposed to be glorifying.
Jesus desires for the good that we do in our lives be motivated by love. Accomplishments should not be done to prove others wrong, but simply because it is the right thing to do. A reactive life driven by anger or even hate instead of an inspired life by the Holy Spirit, will never produce Christ's life in us. And it definitely will not allow His light to shine.
Jesus has called us to a life of love and for everything we do to be inspired by His love. Remember, unless we allow ourselves to be loved and encouraged by His love, we will not have the love needed for others. Spend time with Jesus and allow His love to fill you overflow to others.
What is motivating you? I pray it is the love of Jesus.
Lord Jesus, search my heart and forgive my actions that are not motivated by Your love. Help me to spend intimate time with you through times of quiet, prayer, reading your Word. Help me to allow your love to fill me and to overflow to those who need You. Amen