by Pastor Tim Burt
A few years ago, I bought a fitness watch. I didn’t know it had an alarm clock built into it, but it did, and I some how triggered it. When I first heard it ring, I didn’t know where the ringing was coming from. When I figured it was coming from my fitness watch, I wondered, What caused it to ring? It just seemed to ring on its own! Of course it didn’t but I must have triggered it when I was first setting the time on it.
Sometimes when we see a person we perceive as “self-motivated,” we often think of them being like that alarm clock going off without being set. Self-motivated people can appear to be like the Energizer Bunny—that just keep on going as though they need no motivation like normal people, but that’s just not true.
The truth is self-motivated people are not just that way. They’re people who have been set. Something within them has been set. They are motivated by things you probably aren’t aware of that keep them moving, and achieving their goals. They’re not just automatically highly motivated for no reason. Something has established and triggered their motivation within them. They know what it is though you can’t see it. And because it’s embedded in the core of their being, it keeps them going constantly!
What is the motivation within a self-motivated person? What is it that triggers this energized and consistent effort of behavior toward goals they deem important? For some it may be thoughts of a better life. For others, financial success. Some have lofty goals of changing the world, while other may be motivated by a desire to have influence on helping others. (That’s me! Helping the world know Jesus!) They may be motivated by a desire to love others, or by the desire for people to love them. Whatever their reasons, there is something driving them toward goals or rewards that motivates them. This means that aren’t really self motivated. It means they have been “set” from within and that desire drives their motivation. It appears to just happen naturally but that isn’t the case. Self-motivated people are people that are fueled by the pursuit of a desired outcome.
Being self-motivated is a highly regarded quality. Every boss would typically pick self-motivated people over anyone else. If they can find a self-motivated, faithful, loyal, diligent employee who sees the big picture and strives for excellence, they often feel as though they have been given a gift straight from Heaven. They wish all their employees were self-motivated.
Desires from within you are what shape you—good or bad. Having good and godly desires—are imagines painted within your heart and mind that motivate you in your actions as to how you walk out your life. Asking God to form good and right desires within you, and then spending time imagining yourself executing them will begin to set your inner clock. Psalm 37:4 NLT says, “Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.” Taking delight in the Lord is taking delight in the instruction of His Word to you. When you pray that God form good and godly desires within you, and then meditate on and begin to act on those desires, powerful and good things begin to form in you. For example, if I’ve ever wanted to lose weight or get in shape or both, I pray about it for at least a month before I begin to act on it. I initially spend time praying for God to form those desires within me, and then spend time thinking about them. Sometimes I read a book on the subject. Sometimes I talk to others who are succeeding in areas I’m interested in to see what helped them. And over time, as I pray, those desire do become formed in me to the extent, that one day, I am ready to go. The alarm has gone off. My motivation has been triggered an so I begin. And I do experience success because I’ve let His desire first be formed in me.
I learned early on in my walk with God, that if I want my inward motivation properly set so that desire is formed within me, it’s critical that I pray about it and imagine it. I would imagine myself doing the thing I wanted to do. Scientifically this has proven to help people. It would because it’s God’s plan! Olympians often train this way!
This very thing is what helped me become a better husband and father. It helped me become a marathon runner. This very thing is what helped me invent the commercial infant changing tables that you now see in public bathrooms everywhere you go. This is what has helped motivate me to consistently write this blog the past 20 years resulting in it now being read by people in over 220 countries. I’ve spent a great deal of time imagining and praying about what I believe God wants me to do and seeking God in how to walk them out.
Let the Lord show you that these truths are true. As you pray and ask God to form good and godly desires within your heart that are right for you, imagine yourself walking them out. As you do, pay attention to how God uses you and the gifting and skills He’s developed within you. Pay attention to what you feel the Lord is leading you to do but before you start, take time to read God’s word, pray, and let those desires be formed within you. One day, like popcorn on a burner, they’ll begin to pop! Some things will be easy and natural. Others will lead you to develop skills and disciplines you’ve not previously had that He wants to develop in you. He’ll give you the grace and motivation to succeed! As you do them, they will become a part of you and turn you into a self-motivated person with your desires driving your motivation! And if you do this with the purpose of glorifying Him all along the way, you will be a blessing to others and it will make your life rich and satisfied!
Proverbs 23:7 NKJV “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he…”
In His love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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