DEVOTIONS AND SERMONS

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Magic Of Motivation
 

Where there is motivation there we can see miracles! Many of us require motivation to do our duties. As disciples let us see how we can motivate one another.

1. Be Friends and Fellow-Workers

Philemon 1:1-3
1 Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, To Philemon our dear friend and fellow worker,
2 to Apphia our sister, to Archippus our fellow soldier and to the church that meets in your home:
3 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.


Most of us know the story about Philemon. Paul has been evangelistic in jail. Paul calls Philemon his friend and fellow-worker. He was a masterful motivator. He understood how to get people to do the right thing. Paul could do miracles, but he almost never used that ability to motivate.

Friendship and fellow-worker are the two components of proper relationships. Most of us tend to specialize in one or the other. If we judge our relationships purely in terms of friendship, we'll miss the point. We're fellow-workers as well. We can't forget. We're disciples by the grace of God. Some of us are the reverse. We understand fellow-worker, but we don't understand friendship.

We see people who don't have any friends. They're doing rotten, reading the Internet. If we put them in a place where they feel listened to, secure and loved, they do great. How many people in our ministry count us as one of their best friends? Is it awkward because everybody says it's you, or because nobody says it's you?

2. Be Positive

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4 I always thank my God as I remember you in my prayers,
5 because I hear about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints.
6 I pray that you may be active in sharing your faith, so that you will have a full understanding of every good thing we have in Christ.
7 Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints.


Even when we think we're being positive, we probably need to be more positive. Paul's going to come down on Philemon. He's a bit of a messed-up Christian. He had slaves, which may have been acceptable. Obviously, he treated his slaves poorly because Onesimus had run away in fear. Not only that, but Paul knows him well enough to know something else about him. Even when he hears his run-away slave is baptized, he probably won't respond too well.

Everybody has strengths and weaknesses. How much are we talking about others strengths? Are we known for encouraging others or always finding faults with others? When someone does some mistake, the immediate temptation is to rebuke them. Do we remember their strengths or do we remember we can also fall at times?

Look at how Paul talks to him. He builds him up, even perhaps beyond what is due. Notice how Paul's encouragement is specific and individual. To motivate others we need to be positive. Inspiring people to share their faith is so much more effective than rebuking them. When you figure out how to help people be motivated to share their faith. That's when people start to move.

3. Pull, Not Push

Philemon 1:8-19
8 Therefore, although in Christ I could be bold and order you to do what you ought to do,
9 yet I appeal to you on the basis of love. I then, as Paul--an old man and now also a prisoner of Christ Jesus--
10 I appeal to you for my son Onesimus, who became my son while I was in chains.
11 Formerly he was useless to you, but now he has become useful both to you and to me.
12 I am sending him--who is my very heart--back to you.
13 I would have liked to keep him with me so that he could take your place in helping me while I am in chains for the gospel.
14 But I did not want to do anything without your consent, so that any favor you do will be spontaneous and not forced.
15 Perhaps the reason he was separated from you for a little while was that you might have him back for good--
16 no longer as a slave, but better than a slave, as a dear brother. He is very dear to me but even dearer to you, both as a man and as a brother in the Lord.
17 So if you consider me a partner, welcome him as you would welcome me.
18 If he has done you any wrong or owes you anything, charge it to me.
19 I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand. I will pay it back--not to mention that you owe me your very self.


Even at Pentecost, it says Peter used many other words to warn and plead. It's different when you feel pulled. Know how it is when our mother asks for something? Somebody comes to us asking you to do a favor for the Lord. How powerful is that? How do we respond when somebody orders us to obey? Rebellion, for most of us. Let us grow in the art of how to pull people to serve God.

4. Be Prepared to Pay Personally

Philemon 1:19-25
19 I, Paul, am writing this with my own hand. I will pay it back--not to mention that you owe me your very self.
20 I do wish, brother, that I may have some benefit from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in Christ.
21 Confident of your obedience, I write to you, knowing that you will do even more than I ask.
22 And one thing more: Prepare a guest room for me, because I hope to be restored to you in answer to your prayers.
23 Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, sends you greetings.
24 And so do Mark, Aristarchus, Demas and Luke, my fellow workers.
25 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.


Paul was prepared to pay back what Onesimus owed. People know whether we're prepared to sacrifice.

Philippians 3:8
What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ

One of the best way to motivate others is to sharing their burdens. It seems as a loss but we will win in relationships - relationship with them and relationship with God. As a disciple we must be ready to have the attitude of 'go anywhere, do anything and give up everything'.