The word “motive” comes from a Latin word that has to do with moving and motion. If you don’t have a good reason for doing something, you won’t move to get it done. We all have things we are supposed to be doing. Sometimes we do these things because we have to. Sometimes we do these things because we want to. Your motive is your reason that makes you move. Your motive contributes to why and how you are doing a task or accomplishing a goal.
For example, once upon a time I had homework. Sometimes it was fun and I did it because I wanted to learn and be challenged. Sometimes it was difficult and I only did it because I knew I had to, something about how it would benefit me down the road. It did, but that’s not really why I did some of it at the time.
For another example, and here I will meddle, going to church! Sometimes we go because we know we should, or someone is making us go. Sometimes we go because we want to worship God and learn about Him out of our love for Him.
Now let’s get some Biblical examples. God often told the Israelites that He wanted their hearts more than just their words. He wanted their obedience more than their sacrifice. In Deuteronomy 10:12-13 God tells the Israelites He wants their fear, respect, obedience, and love before He tells them to keep His commandments. In 1 Samuel 15:17-22, Samuel tells Saul that obedience is better than sacrifice. In Micah 7:1-8 and Zechariah 7 God is pointing out whether or not the Israelites motives were pure and right.
Amidst all our duties and goals, let us ask ourselves, “What’s my motive?”