Motivating some people is not difficult because they are determined to follow positive examples. Our faith grows when we appreciate the price great people have paid for their beliefs. We grow best when we focus on what we love most.
Paul wrote, "Be steadfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing our labor is not in vain in the Lord." (I Cor. 15:58)
1. When a person knows for certain that their work will make a difference they are motivated to do their very best. Only when we have the confident persuasion that the Lord will reward us for our work do we have the tendency to do our ministries wholeheartedly as to eteranl Lord instead of to please people.
Illustration: Whenever I go through Chicago O’Hare airport, I pass by a modest placard dedicated to the memory of Lt. Commander Edward Henry Butch O’Hare. It describes the heroic way that O’Hare gave his life in the service of his country. During World War 2, O’Hare became the Navy’s number one aviator. He won the Congressional Medal of Honor for being the first to sacrifice his life during a naval operation in World War 2. However, I did not fully appreciate O’Hare until I read about what his father did for his loving son.
It seems that Butch O’Hare’s father was a lawyer for the murdering gangster, Al Capone, during the days of prohibition. Known as "Artful Eddie", he had millions of dollars in his control during the 1920’s and 1930’s. But, one day he had enough. He decided for the sake of his family, he would testify against Al Capone. Eddie O’Hare could see that his actions were corrupting his son. He felt that unless he took a stand, his son would end up enslaved to crime as he was. Not long after he turned state’s evidence against Al Capone on tax evasion, a hired hit man took the life of Eddie O’Hare.
2. Because of his father’s courageous actions, Butch O’Hare was accepted at the Naval Officer’s Finest School in Annapolis, Maryland. In effect, the father gave his life so his son could live with a clear conscience. To Butch O’Hare, giving his life for his country was a simple matter of following his Father’s example!
When we consider how much Christ has done for us it behooves us to do nothing less for others. Paul said, "Present yourselves as a living sacrifice. Holy and acceptable to God which is just your reasonable service." (Romans 12:1)
Application: When we really appreciate the great sacrifice that Christ made for us, we will give ourselves completely as an expression of what is reasonable. As we lose appreciation for Christ’s sacrifice we will watch our hearts grow cold towards serving Him.
3. To be steadfast means to be consistent. You do not have to be flashly but the Lord expects faithful obedience to the tasks and relationships He has called us to minister through. Do not grow weary in well doing for in due season you will reap if you do not faint. As you therefore have opportunity do good to everyone, especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Gal. 6:9,10)
4. Be unmoveable. Too often we think that cannot bend or we will break, but realize that the Lord’s Spirit gives us the flexibility, adaptability and freedom to make the necessary changes in our behavior to maximize our influence for the Lord Jesus. Unmoveable does not necessary mean legalistic, brittle or unbending.
5. Know that your labor will not be in vain in the Lord. "Only one life will soon be past. ONly what is done for Christ will last." Rejoice that we can lay up for our treasures in heaven through all kinds of our gifts, offerings and service. Nothing done for God will go unrewarded. Do it out of love and obedience and the Lord will reward you on the basis of the motive of your heart as you do it for His kingdom’s expansion, His glory and His great commission’s sake.