Changing My Why

Confession: There’s a part of my personality that I really dislike.

It’s my motives.

I find motives to be sneaky and insidious things.  Motives are a matter of the heart, the “why” behind what we do. And mine generally stink.

motive: a reason for doing something, especially one that is hidden or not obvious.

I feel a deep connection to Paul, when he shares in the scriptures, “So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.”

This has been my struggle for years.  I want to do something good, and then I am immediately plagued by wanting to do it for all the wrong reasons.  I want to please others or look good. Actually, more often with me, I just don’t want to look “bad”.  Or I act out of fear. I am often motivated by the fear of not being good enough, or not doing enough good. Sometimes I feel like if there is a way to warp a motive, then I’ve probably discovered it.mtverse

And yet, I realized something recently. I don’t have to accept my motives. I can argue with them. I can argue with myself. I can actually change the “why” behind my actions.  If I am calling someone back, motivated out of guilt, I can actually remind myself of their friendship and change my “why” to calling them because I value them.  I actually have the choice to identify, and choose, the right reasons for doing good things.

I imagine that my stinky motives will keep whispering in my ear and heart. But I’m up for a good argument!



3 thoughts on “Changing My Why

    1. Yes! I was thinking the same thing. Wrestling ourselves into a better way of thinking! I used to think that something was “wrong” with me because I struggle so much with these things. I’m starting to realize that struggling is just reality and it takes a lot of effort and intentionality to get to a spiritually and emotionally healthy place. It’s funny…we don’t expect ourselves to be physically healthy without effort, but sometimes I think we can expect ourselves to be naturally emotionally/spiritually healthy!


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