by Pastor Tim Burt
If you missed Part One of this, you can read it online at my website.
Click here for Part Two
We’ve been talking about “self-motivated” people. They are often esteemed and valued. They are often perceived as those who can figure things out, those who can get the job done, and those you can count on. But are they really “self” motivated? A self-motivated person is really a person motivated by inward desires that may be invisible to those observing, but passionately fueled and refueled by this pursuit of a desired outcome—something that can be true of anyone.
Desires from within are what shape and give strength and passion to a self-motivated person. Those desires are the developed imaginations that have become their vision and blueprint for what they are motivated toward, whether good or bad. There are highly motivated people that work toward evil outcomes from wrong motives and there are highly motivated people that work for good and godly outcomes born of good and godly motives. As a Christian, God’s purpose and direction have to become the center of motivation. We have God’s promise to help us with that. Psalm 37:4 says, “Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart's desires.”
Imagination—letting God fill your heart with a desired outcome—is something He will give you. The more you give time to reading, praying, and seeking God to order the steps of your life, the more He will fill the imagination of your heart. Imagining is what visionaries do. They begin to get a clear mental image of something in their heart. They don’t stop with that image. They continue meditating until they see a blueprint in their mind that becomes clear, and then they begin to execute it. Your imagination is a gift from God, and it was given to you to imagine the things He leads you by His Spirit in.
When it comes to making changes in your life, it all begins with desires and imaginations. You have to ask yourself, “What does God want my current day-to-day life to look like? What changes does He want me to make now? Don’t just think lofty goals. Think practical! Think in terms of your daily lifestyle. Then you can think, “What does He want me to pursue in the big picture?” Let the Lord fill your imagination with those answers. Let the good things God shows you begin to replace the unprofitable things that eat up and waste your life. Meditate on them and once they become clear, write them down and prioritize them in the order that you’ll work on them. Spend a great deal of time imagining how you would literally walk them out. Think through each one.
Ask yourself: What is the blueprint for each of these priorities? Is one a diet? Imagine it. What has blown up your past efforts that you can do differently this time? What is your preparation necessary to make sure it works this time? Do you need to get rid of all the sweets in your house? Do you need some healthy vegetables bought, cleaned, and laid out in a bowl ready to snack on instead? Do you need to pack a healthy lunch? Do you need to set up even a small exercise routine of 15 minutes that you can do at a time of day you can execute it? This all takes serious imagining. God is in the details. This is where the Lord creates true God-given desires and the ability to think out how you will execute them successfully.
Don’t rush to begin the things the Lord shows you. Instead, take what He shows you and pray over them. Ask the Lord to help prepare your heart to do them right. Meditate on it. Let your imagination fill up with you seeing yourself execute it. One day you will get so filled up with desire to do them, you won’t be able to hold yourself back. That’s what desires do. They create motivation to do! No matter what is on your list, each one should be thought over in your mind and imagination again and again, just as though you were doing it. You will find that it’s like stoking a fire. Motivation begins to build!
Finally, I am about to share with you a secret, one that I am sure that worldly people understand and charge great deals of money for. They may not know that it originated from God, but they know it works. It works because God created it. The secret is this: You have to keep this image and plan before the eyes of your mind and heart continuously. This is the same principle that God gave us for walking out His word. In the verses you are about to read, you will see that God is telling them to find ways to keep His word in front of them at all times: read it, think on it, talk about it, teach it.
Deut. 11:18-20 (NLT) “So commit yourselves completely to these words of mine. Tie them to your hands as a reminder, and wear them on your forehead. Teach them to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are away on a journey, when you are lying down and when you are getting up again. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates…”
When I pursued creating the commercial infant changing table that is in public restrooms, every aspect of it was on my mind constantly. My priority list was my spiritual growth, my marriage, my parenting, being the kind of employee the airline I worked at would want as a manager, serving in my church, and building this dream of a commercial infant changing table for public restrooms. I had a vision and blueprint in my heart for each of these and this is all I had time for. These things were all I let occupy my thoughts and time. I thought about, talked about, prayed about, taught on, and continually imagined these things. My motivational fires were continuously stoked.
What helped purify my motivation for each of these was this: "And whatsoever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men." Colossians 3:23 This is what creates a motivated person of great value—what you were created to be!
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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