Motives are the “why” we do what we do…as well as, for “whom” we do them. It is natural to desire the applause of men for self-fulfilling ambitions. Let’s be honest, we love the approval of others, and we fear their rejection. These are powerful motivations!
As Christians, we should care about how we do things that others see, but we must deeply long for God’s approval first…and foremost. We should live our lives for an audience of one–which means that we must regularly choose to live for God’s approval rather than the applause of men. The Apostle Paul said, “Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him.” (II Cor. 5:9)
As follows of Christ, we understand that “man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart!” (I Sam. 16:7). Let us live our lives with motives that are pure–that long to please the One who called us, who saved us, who adopted us and who loves us! It is the only choice that brings peace and contentment, and it is the only choice that brings glory to God.
Why do we do what we do?…and for whom do we do them? Our motives matter! Let’s choose to please and honor the One who sees our hearts ….and gain His approval of, “Well done!!”