Friday, March 30

When The Spotlight is Off

Please read James 4

While I was volunteering in my son’s preschool class, I began observing all of the other children and their ability to write out numbers. Then I looked at my son’s paper and couldn’t help but notice that his looked a tad underdeveloped.

The other kids in his class were writing better than he was. That’s a hard pill to swallow for a Mom. Our children are always the cutest smartest kids ever.

When we got home, and after discussing it with my husband, we told Philip that if he practiced writing his numbers we would get him that video game he had been dreaming about. Yes, we bribe. It works wonders.

The task of helping Philip was delegated to my husband. He is the patient perfectionist and I love him dearly for it. My husband wrote out the numbers 1 through 10 and gave Philip a blank sheet of paper. Philip grabbed his marker and then clear as day wrote out the numbers 1 through 10.

It became obvious that Philip was waiting for an audience and a reward. My husband and I couldn’t help but laugh. Philip is a child who performed when the spotlight was shining brightly on him. However, this isn’t a behavior that is reserved for children. We grown ups do the same thing.

In Mark, Jesus talks about the woman who gave two coins. Rich people threw in large offerings and did it while all eyes were on them. Then a poor widow threw in all she had.

Jesus said:

“ ‘They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in 

everything--all she had to live on.’ ” 

 (Mark 12:44) 

No one was paying any attention to the little old lady throwing in two copper coins. No one except for Jesus.

How do you act when the spotlight is taken off of you? When you are at home alone without an audience, are you the same person that stops to chat with the other Mom’s when you drop your kids off? Are you the same person that sits in the pew every Sunday? Why do you do some of the nice things you do for others? Is it for public acknowledgement? Is it for acceptance or for a reward?

What motivates you? 

Do your eternal rewards in heaven influence your decisions or are you possessed by the benefits of the flesh?

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as if working 

for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive 

an inheritance from the Lord as a reward.” 

 (Colossians 3:23) 

If this is something that you struggle with, then I urge you to consider your motivation. Bless others with the sole purpose of bringing glory to God, not yourself. Be the same person in private as you are in public.

Dear God, 

Please help me to focus on you as my reward. I pray that you align my heart and mind with yours. Erase any ill motivated thoughts that enter my mind and help me act out of love and allegiance to you. I pray that I bring glory to you by my deeds and that I continue to grow into the person you created me to be. Thank you for specifically designing every facet of my personality. Help me shine not only in the presence of others but also in times when I’m alone. Amen.

Written By Ashley K.

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