We love to measure the health, success, or sustainability of pretty much anything and everything. We measure our kids by their grades in school. We measure teams by their wins and losses. We measure people by their influence and following on social media. In a world obsessed with measuring “success,” we ought to be assessing in our own lives something we cannot see: our motivation.
We can define motivation simply as the reason we do something. Motivation is the driving force behind the decisions we make. There is a reason for everything that we do—both big and small—but what that motivation is might not be obvious to those around us.
In Genesis 11, Noah’s family had grown and began to rebuild the earth’s population. At some point along the way, they decided to ignore God’s command to spread out and subdue the earth for God’s glory. Instead, the people decided to build a tower to show their greatness. Their motivation was both obvious and arrogant.
Read Psalm 127:1-2. These verses provide a blatant reminder that God is the only true builder. His glory is our only proper motivation. Additionally, this psalm gives us a promise that those who love God will be able to rest from being driven by selfish motivation.
Doesn’t it sound pretty attractive to be able to rest from selfish motivation that plagues so much of our thinking and behavior? In God’s economy, He’s less worried with the outcome of our decisions and more concerned with the reason for our decisions. That’s not to say that it doesn’t matter what we do. Rather, if our motivation is right—if our hearts are right—our actions will follow. And not only will our motivation and behavior honor God, but much of the anxiety of life will fade away too.
When was the last time you measured your motivation? Is the driving force behind what you do making a name for yourself, your kids, or even your church? Or is the primary desire driving your life boasting in the name of Christ? Read Psalm 127:1 again. May we be driven by God’s glory and not our own.
FAMILY TALKING POINTS
This is the big idea of how this week’s Bible story points to Jesus.
- Babies & Toddlers: People will worship Jesus.
- Younger Preschool: People disobeyed God, so God mixed up their language and spread the people over the earth. One day, Jesus will bring His people back together. People from every language will worship Him together.
- Older Preschool: People tried to make themselves famous instead of God. God mixed up their language so the people spread out over the earth. One day, Jesus will bring His people back together. People from every group and language will worship Him together.
- Kids: People wanted glory for themselves instead of God. They ignored God’s plan, so God confused their language and scattered them all over the earth. One day, Jesus will gather together all of God’s people—from every tribe and language—and they will worship Him together.
BIG PICTURE QUESTION & ANSWER
This is an important biblical truth that your child will encounter each week of this unit.
- Younger Preschool: What does it mean to sin? We sin when we disobey God.
- Older Preschool: What does it mean to sin? To sin is to go against God and His commands.
- Kids: What does it mean to sin? To sin is to think, speak, or behave in any way that goes against God and His commands.
This is a Bible verse that relates to what your child will encounter each week of this unit.
- Babies & Toddlers: We all make wrong choices. — Romans 3:23
- Younger Preschool: Everyone makes wrong choices. — Romans 3:23
- Older Preschool: All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. — Romans 3:23
- Kids: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. — Romans 3:23
** Next week: God Made a Covenant with Abraham (Genesis 12–20)