I’ve been busy lately reading and writing closing out the seminary semester. Throw in the fact that I’ve not been sleeping much and I’ve got a battle between sleep and school. Juggling seminary, work, and home life can be exhausting at times and even frustrating.
Sometimes I wonder – why all this studying? What’s the motivation?
As with anything we Christians do in life, our motivation should be to glorify God (1 Cor. 10:31). Our reason should be kingdom motivated. That is, God’s kingdom, not our own. One of the temptations in America, in ministry or otherwise, is the temptation to seek our own little kingdom.
We often want what this person has or what that person has and use that desire to motivate us. This type of desire shows its infection in our homes, kids, business, ministry, seminary, and on and on.
A few weeks ago I was praying about my own motivations putting myself in check. One morning during my morning devotions, I read Ecclesiastes 4:4 in my Bible reading.
Then I saw that all toil and all skill in work come from a man’s envy of his neighbor.
This also is vanity and a striving after wind. (ESV)
I stopped my reading and meditated on that verse. Then, I could not stop thinking about it. Was I working hard because of something someone else has that I want? Something I think I deserve? That kind of motivation results in never being satisfied because there is always another neighbor work in vain after.
Work motivated by envy is certainly chasing the wind – it never ends.
Personally, I had to check myself and make sure my satisfaction was solely in Christ (Phil. 4:11) for His glory. Indeed, I need to be mindful of my neighbor that might pray for him not envy him. I am resolved to do the work Christ has before me at this point in my life.
I don’t know what tomorrow holds and I won’t worry about it (Matt. 6:34). Yet, I know where I am today and discern what God has set before me. And I will make future plans (Pr. 21:5) trusting His will (Pr. 16:9, Rom. 8:28).
Here I blog…
(Image by Christian Ferrari.)