Day Six – Hidden Motives

Today’s Scripture: Matthew 26:11; Mark 14:10; John 12:1-8; Proverbs 16:2; Jeremiah 17:9

Jeremiah the prophet said, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?” The disciples who complained about the wasted perfume may have wanted to do the right thing by hoping to feed the poor. But there was at least one who was greedy for money—Judas.

In Mark’s account of this story, after Jesus exhorted the disciples to leave the woman alone, Judas made a quick exit and arranged with the chief priests his plan to betray Jesus. Of course, money was involved.

In John’s account of a similar story, Mary anointed Jesus’ feet and wiped them with her hair. Judas loudly objected. However, “He did not say this because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief; as keeper of the money bag, he used to help himself to what was put into it.”

I’m not saying we are money-hungry thieves (like Judas). But, if we’re truly honest with ourselves, we might admit that sometimes we perform acts of service with the hidden intention of receiving some self-gratification. Or, at the very least, we take our own convenience and comfort into consideration first. We’re willing to do something a drip at a time rather than be poured out to the point of emptiness. The last thing the church needs is one more drip.

Maybe the Lord is more interested in what we do from pure motives than how generous we are toward the needy. Just a thought.

  • What would your life look like if you completely emptied yourself before the Lord?
  • How can you determine if your motives are pure?