Someone wise once told me how great Leaders often have no trouble inspiring others to live their best life, but motivating someone to actually DO IT depends entirely upon that person. And yet, the Apostle Paul tells us in his letter to the Hebrews we are actually to “think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.”
This kind of motivation usually requires relationship and a form of intimacy beyond simple inspiration. A sunset or beautiful painting can inspire us to dream again, but a wise friend with a heart for encouragement, a tenacity for vision, and a well-timed word of wisdom is usually the one that helps us get motivated to get up off our bottoms and aquire the tools we need to build that dream. Maybe this is what Paul was talking about.
If you’re blessed to have one of those wise friends in your life, be sure to thank them regularly and remember them well “when you come into your kingdom,” as they say. And if you are one of those friends then to you I say, “Keep going. The world needs your fire and many hearts need your deposit of wisdom and faith. You are an Apostle of Love!”
I’ve also noticed how motivation comes in different forms for many. Some people are motivated by money, cars, awards and recognition, even loved ones and other people, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But, for those who have sought after these things already, many find they are not enough to stand the test of endurance. I’ve found that money, cars and things are fleeting, and people will always disappoint you at some point along the way. I love how the writer of Ecclesiastes puts it, “everything is vanity.” So what kind of motivation can stand the test of time? You do know Time is the test? Once we’re outside of the testing ground, Time ceases to exist, and so does the testing. So how can we stay motivated through it? What can we hold on to that will remind us why we must endure and keep hope? It would seem to me if something is to be a truly authentic, and therefore, enduring motivation, it must come from a source that is endless and all loving and beyond our ability to be satisfied; something that we’ll never grow tired of pursuing after and will never leave us feeling rejected or abandoned. Something that exists outside of Time that we know we can run to and is waiting for us to finish. Abraham called that something or rather someone “El Olam” for the first time in Holy Scriptures in Genesis 21. In Hebrew it means, the Eternal Everlasting God.
I wonder if Paul had El Olam in mind when he wrote these words of endurance at the close of Hebrews 10:
“For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised.
‘Yet a little while, and the coming one will come and will not delay; but my righteous one shall live by faith, and if he shrinks back, my soul has no pleasure in him.’
But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.”
Dear friends, I pray this Verse of the Year be our inspiration for 2018, to “think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works,” and El Olam be the motivation that is greater than any other! Even the writer of Ecclesiastes reveals this is the ultimate motivation, saving the answer for all life’s meaning until the last two verses of chapter 12, “Fear (Love) God and keep his commandments; for this is the whole duty of man.”
I pray our desire be to please God in all things, the Author of Life, the writer of our story, the One with the pen who sees the end and knows every word in between, from everlasting to everlasting. Let us not shrink back, lest we are destroyed, but be motivated in faith, as Apostles of Love, to please Him, and preserve our souls. This is how you and I will see our dreams fulfilled. This year, more than any other, let us stir each other to good works and acts of love!
Until the Day Dawns and the Shadows Flee,
#WakingEve 🍎 #WakingSleepingBeauty