Knowing what motivates us and what drives us requires a deep dive into the waters of our heart in partnership with the Holy Spirit for a humbling, honest, and transparent expedition of discovery and transformation. Knowing what our deepest motives are will help us to identify our strengths and our weaknesses when it comes to daily fulfilling the purposes of Christ.
The scriptures use the analogy of deep waters to illustrate how deep our motives reside in our hearts. In modern terms the analogy is like deep sea divers who explore the oceans’ depths.
“The motives of a person’s heart are deep waters, but a wise one will draw them out.”
~ Proverbs 20:5
This principle of searching out our own heart’s motives also applies to discovering the motives of other people’s hearts, if they will let you in. Pastoral counseling (or coaching, or consulting, or ministry) often centers on the exploration and discovery of deep seated motivations through conversation, the study of scripture, and prayer with the other person.
The depths of the human heart are not easily explored. It requires the assistance and the light of the Holy Spirit to discover and identify motivations and desires that might not be accustomed to light, they shrink back into their underwater caves when someone gets close.
“And He who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.”
~ Romans 8:27
Prayer, both private prayer on our part and intercessory prayer by another person (and the prayers of intercession of the Holy Spirit) is integral to arriving at a clear understanding of what is driving us: why we do the things that we do.
Quite often a very helpful tool in this process is that of journaling things we have prayerfully considered and scripturally studied in relation to our heart, the motives we have identified as being (or not being) central to how we live our daily life.
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