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2013_07_08 Motivation

When starting out on any journey or making a change in life, the most important part of the foundation is our “want to”, our “why”, our deeper reason. It is the keystone that keeps us pressing forward and focused on the task at hand. It is the reason we never give up, no matter how many times we stall or for how long. It is that thing that the Holy Spirit whispers in our ear to infuse us with strength when the times get tough. It is that thing that is more important to us than any hardship we might face, anything we might lose, or anything obstacle we may have to overcome. It is the fuel that keeps our passion fire burning every step along the way.

Typically when the idea to start out on an adventure, as I like to call them, takes hold we are charged with all kinds of fuel. These, however, are typically emotionally based and we all know that emotions are subject to change with the wind. So before we know it, our fuel has run out and we just “ain’t feelin’ it no more”. On top of that, we have excuses galore running through our head that give validity to our feelings to stop pressing. Those are times when that deeper reason is needed to refuel that passion and push us past that momentary lull.

To begin with, we need to have our deeper reason in place before we decide to start because, ultimately, every journey is a commitment, a vow. When we set out to take something on or achieve something, when we speak the proclaiming words out of our mouths, we are committing ourselves to those words and intentions. Created in the image of God, who created the whole of existence simply by speaking, our words, intentions, and dedications carry with them great power. Our fulfillment of them influences not only our credibility and reputation, but that of God, whom we represent in the earth. I believe this is one of the many intricacies being conveyed in Ecclesiastes 5:1-7.

Where many people get disillusioned in setting a deeper reason is thinking it has to stay static throughout the journey. This is not always the case. Many journeys, especially the more spiritual ones, have not only an ultimate deeper reason attached to the destination but more temporary ones attached to each level along the way. The more personal the reason is the better. This is not the time to try to force ourselves into what we think our deeper desire should be. We as Christians have a tendency to beat ourselves up when “focusing on the Will of God” isn’t keeping us motivated. God created us, He knows our flaws, He knows our shortcomings, and He loves us through them all. He examines our hearts and knows our deeper intentions.

For example, let’s say we want to eat better, lose weight, and get into shape. Our ultimate reason is to grow closer to Him through the maintenance of His Temple, our body. We pray and mediate, inviting Him into the process but the will power just doesn’t seem to be growing any stronger. Our prayer partners keep telling us to go to Him, but a year later we have still made no progress in our journey and now not only are we out of shape, but we’re plagued with guilt too. What we fail to realize is that reasons tend to be more effective the closer they are to the level we are on. Take will power with food for instance. That is a fleshly desire and, to temporarily start out with, we may have more success getting moving with a fleshly reason. A new pair of shoes or a fresh manicure for keeping to our plan for a month straight or a point system earned weekly toward something we’ve been wanting just may do the trick. The point is to get up and get moving down the path we’ve committed to and if that’s what keeps us from raiding the refrigerator at 2 o’clock in the morning, then so be it.

As long as we keep in line with the ultimate reason, the temporary ones along the way don’t need to be so deep. They simply need to keep us moving! As long as we are moving, we are growing. That growth, by its very nature, deepens our reasons in the process. So before long, in the example above, we are more focused on the changes in our body than the shoes, manicure, or points. Those reasons don’t motivate us like they did in the beginning and we are losing fuel. Now we must re-evaluate our temporary reason. Maybe we are starting to realize the damage our past eating habits have done to our body and the residues left behind. Our temporary reason at this point is to cleanse ourselves inside and out. Watching that cleansing progress clear our skin, grow our hair and nails, etc. becomes what keeps us moving forward. It’s still not quite the deeper reason we set forth ultimately, but it has moved. As we progress down our journey, refueling at every level, we reach a point where that ultimate deeper reason is all we need to press forward day in and day out. With each side journey that pops up though, be prepared to add new temporary reasons as needed.

We are all graced with a level of faith given to us by God and we are to use our gifts in proportion to our faith {Romans 12:3-8}.  None of us has the right to judge others for their level of faith, nor are we to judge ourselves against the faith of others. But each of us, being fully convinced, must dedicate ourselves and our journeys to God {Romans 14}. So let’s pull out everything in our arsenal to push, pull, or drag ourselves down each and every path that leads us closer to Him! In addition, as we are moving and growing, we are to diligently seek Him and heed His instructions for increasing our faith and in turn deepen our reasons for pushing on. As long as we keep moving, by whatever means are available to us, we can and will, step by step, reach our goals with Him in all areas of life! Be blessed!

 

Surrendered to Him~

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What journey are you all fired up to start out on? What keeps you motivated when the road gets weary?

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