ABOUT MOTIVES

It's hard to fully understand all that drives us. Kant said that it's the "insatiable desire to possess and rule." Former President Lyndon B. Johnson said "Sex and envy are the greatest drives in life." Former President Nixon said, "People react to fear, not love. They don't teach that in Sunday School, but it's true."

Maybe French Philosopher La Rochefoucald nailed it when he said that we would be embarrassed by our best deeds "if the world were to see all their underlying motives."

Solomon wrote, "All of a man's ways seem right to him, but the Lord weighs the heart." (Proverbs 21:2) This reminds us of Jeremiah's words, "The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" (Jeremiah 17:9)

I gave up a long time ago trying to determine what motivates others. I have trouble reading the intentions of my own heart; how can I judge what drives someone else?

A individual's attention shouldn't be consumed with "what drives them" — it should be directed to: "What drives me? Are the desires of my heart molded into the desires of God's heart?"

David's prayer was "Create in me a pure heart." (Psalm 51:10) He understood that his motives were a mixed bag, sometimes leading to greatness, sometimes leading to disaster. And he understood that his heart needed to be made new by the power of God's mercy.

We can't afford to waste our time second-guessing that which only God can judge and only God can change. Instead, we must make a habit of laying our own hearts on the altar, asking God to redeem and purify our motives — and to use us in spite of who we are, not because of who we are.

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