so what’s your motive in following Christ?

share jesus online, Sticky Jesus, John the BaptistTurning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, “What do you want?” They said, “Rabbi” (which means “Teacher”), “where are you staying?” “Come,” he replied, “and you will see.” ~ John 1:38-39, NIV

by Toni Birdsong
Can you imagine walking behind Christ and having Him turn around and say “what do you want?”

That’s exactly what happened to Andrew and John when they left the ministry of John the Baptist and started following Jesus as He walked by.

Jesus knew the answer to the question. Still, the verse indicates that perhaps He wanted to see how they would express their heart and their motive.

Apparently they passed the test. The two men said they wanted to see where Jesus was staying. They wanted to spend time with Jesus. They wanted to know Him. That was as complicated as their motive got.

With every click online you will need to examine motive—yours and someone elses’. It’s common to ask yourself: What do these people want, what’s their motive? What are they trying to sell me or get from me? Often you will be pitched and played by non-Christians and other times the same will emotional transaction will happen with Christians.

Relationship comes down to the motive of the heart. Real relationships plant firmly, while false ones may open themselves brilliantly only to fade out just as quickly.

Jesus requires nothing less in His relationship with us. To say you follow Christ is one thing. To know why you follow Him is another. Are you following Him for your own purposes? Did you race online this morning without meeting face-to-face with Him? Did you seek out people before you sought Him?

Stay a while with the question. This is a click-here-drag-there, zip-this-blast-that world. It’s easy to get sucked into the vortex of the digital dance and forget to listen to the music. It’s not unheard of for a passionate preacher (or Christfollower) to slide into the “Look-At-Me-Show” or the “I’m-Cool-Like-You-Show” and begin to advance his or her causes over those of Christ. It’s never part of the plan . . . still, it happens.

So here it is: Jesus is turning to you every day before you log on as His follower and asking: “What do you want_______(insert your name)?” Can you answer Him?

Confession time (but only for the brave): Do you ever examine your motives before logging on? Can you share your wisdom in this area?

Post/Tweet this:
To say you follow Christ is one thing. To know *why* you follow Him is another. Check the motive of your heart before logging online today. #LiveSticky

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  • Bill K.

    I can’t say that I go through a process of examination of motive each morning but after thinking about today’s question, I can tell you that it seems that I get on the internet each morning for a couple of reasons. I am sure that I have been put on this earth for the process of discovery. In other words, God created me to seek…I have been created to seek him. I find questions like the one posed above help me to look in places I might never be able to get to on my own. I have learned in scripture that it is for each of us to work out our own salvation with the Lord and as weird as it might sound, logging on to the internet has become part of that process for me.
    I have come to believe that we are all charged with speaking out on the things that make for solid doctrine and spreading the good news of God. I have discovered that the internet is a great vehicle for spreading that word.

  • Tami Heim

    The revelation of what is possible for the Kingdom online has certainly been embedded in our hearts, too. What you’re discovering and feeling isn’t weird at all. Transformation is a process subject to frequent changes in velocity. Sometimes I find myself stuck in certain places because my seeking wavers in its intensity. We encounter a ‘choice’ to be made in each and every moment and what we decide regulates our speed.

    I use my online time in the morning as a follow up to my daily prayer and study time. It’s like an accountability practice that keeps me moving forward.

    BTW – My favorite scripture about ‘process’ is 2 Peter 1:5-7…

    For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.

    Bill – thanks for sharing and joining the conversation. We’re processing right here with you.

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  • http://jimkane.wordpress.com/ Jim Kane

    This is an excellent question Tami and Toni, and I agree with Bill K that I don’t often really examine myself before logging on. My motives in following Christ have run the gamut of following because it was the right thing to do as I was created to do it to I do it because I am a religious professional. Thanks for asking the hard questions!

  • Anonymous

    Love you honesty. I am right there with you. I know the examination of the heart is always implied in the scriptures but it never really jumped out at me until I read the verse in my NIV and then looked at the study notes. It stopped my carousel too and apparently God wanted that! I’m grateful for the Word that is ALIVE and active and has its way with each of us everyday. Thanks Bill!

  • WriteWhereUr

    Great post…and so very true. Human beings are very complex…and even when trying to do what’s right we often fail by becoming sidelined by one of our other layers. That is one of the reasons I so enjoy singing the song during worship called, Open The Eyes Of My Heart Lord…because that is where God helps us to “get real” with him. Those very precious moments when we ask him to let us see him in all the areas of our lives. Thanks for the reminder in your post to examine our hearts and those that we interact with.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=671101964 Jennifer Adams Klein

    Well, I was just about to write an email that would have been about promoting myself under the guise of helping someone know the Truth. I felt put down by them and wanted to buoy myself back up. So glad I stopped here first. There will now be no such email. AND this morning I ran to the computer before spending time with the Lord and I totally knew better the whole time. So, you spared me a second regret of the morning. It was starting to turn more into a “mourning”. I would say tee hee. Only, it just ain’t funny.

    I do often ask myself about my motives logging on. Often I just desperately want to “be with” other people. I feel a real drive for it. But I always find that spending that time with Jesus is infinitely more satisfying to that deep need. And then, when I do log on, I have something to give to others because I have received from Him, and am walking with Him, listening. Its His voice the world needs to hear, not mine.

  • Tami Heim

    God can do so much more with us and through us when we get real with Him about where we are. It takes courage to do admit we failed to put the first thing first and even more courage to confess it to others. I completely get the ‘mourning’ part. If I start my day off center – I end up bruising and crashing into the very places and people that matter most to me. It’s SO counterproductive to His plan. It takes Psalm 51 (extra-strength) to get me back home.

    I’m with you Jennifer – there is nothing more satisfying than Jesus and allowing the overflow to pour from my life. O Lord – help us live what we know to be true – all for You.

  • Tami Heim

    “Sidelined by one of our other layers.” So. Well. Put.

    I don’t want to warm the bench or view what God is doing from the sideline. The play book is clear – less of me/more of Him. I’m taking my place beside you in the choir,

    “To see You high and lifted up, shining in the light of Your glory, pour out Your power and love as we sing, Holy, Holy, Holy. /”

  • Anonymous

    Yes, I want to see the good, the bad AND the UGLY of myself. Open the eyes of our hearts to this, Lord!