We own a building that was once a pharmacy, a school, a bargain store then a horticulture center and now it is used as a warehouse/office/junk storage/men’s group on Tuesday mornings, so forth and so on. It had a full glass storefront when we acquired it and we decided to remodel the front more for safety because it was old glass and also to create a little more privacy. On occasions, I will run into someone who asks, “What is it you do in that building?” “What is in there?” “Can I just look in the door to see?” My response, in the order of their asking “Nothing, nothing, absolutely!, just stop by anytime.” But they never do. Maybe if I said we are hiding something we don’t want anyone to see or know about, those people would line up at the door, or maybe not.
The point I am making is there is no such thing as a private life, or a place to hide in this world today for man or woman. One statement I often make is, “We should be a river not a reservoir” with our faith, love, hope, joy and our spiritual leadership. However the river statement doesn’t lend itself to opening up all aspects of my life. Now, I am not hiding anything illegal, or anything that would cause harm or create a war, but my home life, family time, certain aspects of our conversations during peaceful, quite times is our families’ business. I heard it said the only way two people could keep a secret between them is if one of the two was deceased. I understand once we say something or do something in public we have no control of how it is communicated later between others and I get that, however it makes me wonder what a person’s motive is for spreading this information.
As leaders, we are in the public eye more so than others. We are in a very dangerous situation because what we do and what we say is taken as gospel. This is why we must have a motive check built into our decision making process, because why we do something determines what we do. Our motives eventually determine our direction. When there is evidence of wrong motives leader’s doctrine drifts and his or her teaching does not produce godliness. The simple nature of wrong motives stirs division and produces personal gain for a prideful leader. Our goal is not to leader with pride or ego for personal gain but to spread the teaching and the wealth of our knowledge we have been gifted. Finally for a leader, the results of wrong motives is the leader falls into temptation, wanders from their faith, and eventually destroys himself or herself.
So how are we, as spiritual leaders watch our motives? We have to be mindful of our actions toward others and their reaction toward us, because trouble comes when leadership performs for the wrong reasons. Spiritual leadership brings reward, so long as we don’t allow the reward to control us. Napoleon Hill said it this way, “It is okay to smoke a cigar, occasionally, but when the cigar starts smoking us it’s time to stop and reevaluate the situation.” We need to remember we did not get where we are alone, prosperity is everything God gifts us above food and shelter.
Along with that thing, we must be content with God’s provision and placement. It those times when we determine we are in control and self-made when we find out we aren’t. We must remain dissatisfied with our own fruitfulness and pursuit of God. In other words, we have to learn to not get comfortable and forget where the gifts originate, He has granted us the gifts and talents and we should use them in a way that brings glory to Him. One of the most important aspects of understanding why we need to have a motive check is that wrong motives can lead to wrong moves and even disqualify us as leaders. What a waste of our gifts if we should allow this to happen.
I encourage each of us to use our God-given gifts and talents in our roles as leaders in a way there is no question to our motives. We are placed in this position to lift up not push down and we should be willing to be the exception to the rules of this world. Others are depending on us to do the right thing for the right reasons, because it does make a difference and add value not only to us but to others, as well.
1 Timothy 6:3-10
Have a wonderful day,