By Steve Nailor
Motivation is literally the desire to do things.
It's the difference between waking up before dawn to pound the pavement and lazing around the house all day. It's the crucial element in setting and attaining goals.
I recently attended a session at Family Vacation Bible School and it was on the topic of “Motivation.” I began thinking about what motivates you and me to do what we do or do not do? Why is it so hard for men to become motivated to be disciples and witnesses to others when we know Jesus calls us to share our faith with others?
What motivates us to be disciples of Jesus Christ?
Maybe you have asked one of these questions:
God, what’s is in it for me?
What do I get out of this? Why should I try to make changes in my life? What will I get for doing this? Is it worth it? For me, the thought of living an eternal life with God is enough of an answer to this question.
“These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, and order that you may know that you have eternal life:––1 John 5: 13
Lord, can I follow you later?
Can I put this off till tomorrow? Yes, you can, but how does that help you understand God’s call for you today. In Mark 1:15-20 when Jesus invites Simon and Andrew, then James and John to be his disciples, they dropped what they were doing and followed him immediately. Do not put off what will help you live every day the rest of your life. Maybe you could find a friend and begin to read and study the Scriptures together.
Do I really have to put you first, Jesus?
Jesus is my personal savior, friend and confidante. Jesus knows everything about me and whatever my sins have been, are and continue to be, Jesus forgives them.
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.––Luke 10: 27
Currently I am in three Class Meeting sessions based on the book The Class Meeting, by Kevin Watson. I asked the participants to share with me what motivates them to do what they do? One wrote;
- “God’s Great Commission.”
- “The Bible (God’s Word) tells us to.”
- “Tell the people about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.”
- “Let others know how awesome God is.”
Matt. 28: 16-28 talks about how we are to go into the world and make disciples. That leads me to ask, “How do we create situations that encourage men to share what is going on in their lives?” Watson writes, “The most important ingredient to a successful group is you!” You must be intentional about your faith. We must be willing to be vulnerable and share openly with other men.
I have been very fortunate over my lifetime to have had at least seven men who have been instrumental in my life. They supported me and encouraged me to get involved and in the Word. Because of their encouragement, I wound up in Africa on a mission trip to help families have clean water and a place to prepare their meals. I was scared, unsure that I should do this, but every step of the way those men, my wife and my family encouraged me. That trip has motivated me far beyond anything I ever expected.
Most likely, we become disciples because of a testimony, other’s deeds, our needs and the encouragement of someone we trust.
We look to others and say, “I would like to be like him.”
We may be shy, afraid we will say something we shouldn’t, feeling unprepared or like we are off base, or might be asked to pray out loud.
But, God will give us what we need, if we will only take a chance and accept his grace.
Jesus calls each one of us to be his disciple. If you need some support and guidance I would suggest “The Class Meeting” approach. Take a chance, find a friend or a small group and be motivated for the Lord!
If you would like to talk more about “The Class Meeting” structure, please feel free to email me.
Steve Nailor, president
National Association of Conference Presidents