The Underlying Motive
Everything we do has a motive. We do every action with a reason. What is the motive for using our spiritual gifts? If we understand why we need to use them, we will understand better how to use them.
The motive for us should be love. If not done in love, our gifts are fruitless. Our efforts are in vain. Many times we use our gifts to gain something. We are prone to do things out of selfish desire– even if it is subconsciously. In the church of Corinth, they did not have the right motives. It was leading them to be unkind, envious, prideful, and this of course leads to disunity. Yet, when love is our motive, God is glorified and the body is unified.
Are we motivated by love or by selfishness?
Without love, using our spiritual gift is pointless. Paul tells the church of Corinth this,
“If I speak human or angelic tongues but do not have love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so that I can move mountains but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give away all my possessions, and if I give over my body in order to boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.”
1 Corinthians 13:1-3
Love drives the Spirit to effectively work through us. We can do the greatest things with the gift we have been given, but if we do it without love, there is no point. Love should motivate our every word and deed.
Love is eternal. We let the spirit pour out of us from a place of love because it gives the world a glimpse of eternity. We do it so that they see the true motive behind all that we do.
Our greatest example of a life motivated by love is Jesus’ life. He was motivated by love in every word He spoke. He was motivated by love in every miraculous work. He was motivated by love every time He taught His disciples. He was motivated by love all the way to His death for us. That was the greatest example of the purest love.
Let us look at our lives. What is motivating us? Why are we using our spiritual gift? Are we doing it for the glory of God? Are we doing it so that the world would know the love of the Father? Because they need to hear it and see it?