Tuesday, October 25, 2016

What Motivates You?

The Denver Broncos currently hold the title of Superbowl Champions. Last night they played, and defeated, the the quarterback they expected to start for them this year, Brock Osweiler.

Osweiler started last season as the backup to Peyton Manning. He started 7 games for the Broncos when Manning was injured, but was benched during the final game of the regular season and watched Manning start all the playoff games on the way to winning the Superbowl.

Much to everyone's surprise, even after Manning retired and the Denver starting QB job all his, Osweiler decided to sign with the Houston Texans. As he walked out the door he provided this explanation,

"I'm very thankful, I'm very appreciative for everything that the Denver Broncos organization has done for me,” he said. “However, in saying that, at this point in time in my career, I feel like the Houston Texans give me the best opportunity to be successful."  [Read more here.]
After last night's game the Texans fall behind the Broncos with 4 wins compared to 5. Did Osweiler make the right decision? It depends on what motivates him. The Texans paid him more money. Osweiler has stated that this was the best decision for his family. Others have suggested that Osweiler was offended after he was benched for the playoffs.

Superbowl rings, money, or family, how do they factor into his decision making process? How much weight does each factor receive?

This ESPN article suggests that Osweiler should have stayed in Denver, and provides this commentary about motivation,
"We all know that happiness and prosperity in life, even in pro football, are often defined by things that have nothing to do with dollars and cents. Take championship rings, for instance. How much money do you think Dan Marino would give back if it meant adding a Super Bowl title to his otherwise staggering legacy?"
As Christians we can harbour numerous motivations for retaining and living out our faith. The fear of eternal punishment for our sins is a common motivating factor. Others may be motivated to follow Jesus because of the example of people they know and respect. In an ideal world people would commit to Jesus simply because they love him: a loving response to a loving God.

The writer of the book of Hebrews explains how joy provided Jesus' motivation to endure the cross,
Now stay focused on Jesus, who designed and perfected our faith. He endured the cross and ignored the shame of that death because He focused on the joy that was set before Him; and now He is seated beside God on the throne, a place of honor. [Hebrews 12:2 VOICE]
You and I are part of that joy. Jesus didn't want to suffer on the cross so that he could sit on a throne. He already sat on a throne before he came to earth. The joy that motivated Jesus involved spending eternity with the people he loved, the people he died to save. Jesus' life-purpose was found outside himself. He lived for the benefit of those around him.

As imitators of Jesus we need to examine our own motivations. Why am I a Christian? Is it all about me? Is it all about God? Do I really care for my neighbours? Or do I just care for them because if I don't I'll be breaking the command to "love my neighbours"?

What are your Top 4 reasons for following Jesus?

For a different perspective on the same topic, try THIS ARTICLE.