Thursday, December 12, 2013

Start With Why

I remember asking my mom the question "Why?" when she asked me to do something and that the answer was often "Because I said so." While I understand the principle behind needing to obey her (although I didn't necessarily do it then) I wanted to be included in the supporting argument for the decision. This simple response didn't provide any clarity on the motivation & reasoning behind decisions that are made. Needless to say, that question wasn't usually answered, but perhaps I should have been asking that question about my own behavior first.

The answer to the question, "Why"?" directly reflects our hearts. It's actually the way that God prefers for us to follow Him. He didn't intend for us to blindly follow His laws, but instead wants our motivation to be intrinsic. In Psalm 40:8 David writes, "I desire to do your will, my God; your law is within my heart."

This attitude reveals the true impetus for godly behavioral change. It's not based on the law (no matter how good that law might be for us) but is instead a result of a yearning to do God's will. If we don't shape our acceptance of God's direction in our hearts we won't really pursue change. We will simply turn back to old patterns of behavior when the truth is no longer convenient for us.

Our focus on our own "why" breeds loyalty and devotion and shapes our morals to honor God. It's the internal commitment that endures.

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