For I desire mercy, not sacrifice, and acknowledgment of God rather than burnt offerings. (Hos. 6:6)

WHAT WAS THE MOTIVE for what they did? Why did she say what she said? We all know why they wrote what they did on that Facebook post yesterday. Motives matter more than actions. Actions do not always happen the way we intend or the way we might want them to be perceived. Motives are what we hold deep down inside. A motive is our rationale. It is our reasoning. The impetus for what we think, what we say, or how we behave all depends on one motive or another.

So the question is, who is in charge of your motives? Are your motives self-centered or Christ-centered? What is demonstrated on the outside of our lives might be a mask, a façade. We may have the best of motives at times. Yet, our actions will always be judged by someone who observes what happened or what was said on the surface.

The Scriptures talk about folks who have a form of godliness (2 Tim. 3:5). To avoid such “surface” godliness we need God’s powerful grace and mercy to change us into the likeness of Jesus on the inside so we can live right on the outside.

Ask God to conform the thinking in your heart to His.

Jim Dunn is the executive director of Church Multiplication and Discipleship for The Wesleyan Church. He resides with his family in the Indianapolis area.