The A, B, C’s of Self-Motivation: A Biblical Perspective

The A, B, C’s of Self-Motivation: A Biblical Perspective

James 2:17 (ESV), “So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”

What Motivates People To Get Going?


Sometimes it takes a painful experience to get us going.

Luke 15:14 – 18 (ESV), “ And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to[a] one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything. “But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you.”

Proverbs 20:30 (ESV), “Blows that wound cleanse away evil; strokes make clean the innermost parts …”


Sometimes it takes a circumstance to get us going. Examples include needing to lose weight for your health or a poor job evaluation (or rejection if your a writer) to get us to do what we should be doing.

1 Kings 17:2 – 9 (ESV), “And the word of the Lord came to him: “Depart from here and turn eastward and hide yourself by the brook Cherith, which is east of the Jordan. You shall drink from the brook, and I have commanded the ravens to feed you there.” So he went and did according to the word of the Lord. He went and lived by the brook Cherith that is east of the Jordan. And the ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning, and bread and meat in the evening and he drank from the brook. And after a while the brook dried up, because there was no rain in the land. Then the word of the Lord came to him, “Arise, go to Zarephath, which belongs to Sidon, and dwell there. Behold, I have commanded a widow there to feed you.”


Sometimes our outlook or point of view can change. Something as simple as reading your Bible or hearing a sermon may provide the call to action.

Acts 9:3 – 6 (ESV), “Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him. And falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”

The A, B, C’s of Self-Motivation (Six Steps to Help Get You Going)

A – Assume Responsibility For Your Own Life.

Proverbs 28:13 (ESV), “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”

Did you know there are three types of people?


This is a person who never assumes responsibility for their actions or situations. They accuse others to be the root cause of their situation or lack of motivation. They blame it on external situations.


This is a person who attempts to justify their lack of performance, missing a deadline, etc. They will not accept their lack of internal motivation or action. These are the people who say they are writers but never write. The want to have written and do the book tours but don’t put there bottoms in a chair and write.


This is a person that makes a choice to get the job done, get the training, or meet the deadline. The finish the article, finish the manuscript, and follow the writer’s guidelines and deadlines. Editors and publishers find them easy to work with.

B – Believe You Can

Romans 12:2 (ESV), “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

Mark 9:23 (ESV), “And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can! All things are possible for one who believes.”

C – Clarify What You Really Want

James 1:8 (ESV), “he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

Write it down.

Have you ever considered writing a personal mission statement? Do you have a purpose for your life?

D – Don’t Wait For Ideal Circumstances

Ecclesiastes 11:4 (ESV), “He who observes the wind will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.”


Perfectionism equals paralyzes or procrastination.

When I was a full time minister, I had a dear friend pastoring a neighboring church give me some of the best advice I ever received. He said, “Jim, you’re a perfectionist. Only God was perfect. It is impossible to write three perfect sermons a week. You maintain your walk with God, set aside time to prepare each message/lesson, write the sermon/lesson, and present your work. God will bless the faithfulness of your preparation. You never know which phrase, sentence, or point will touch the one life that needs it. Remember, it is God that gives the increase, not you.”

Do you best and trust God for the results.

E – Exercise Your Body

1 Timothy 4:8 (ESV), “for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”

Fatigue causes procrastination.

“Fatigue makes cowards of us all,” Coach Vince Lombardi

F – Fire Away! Do It Now!

Proverbs 27:1 (ESV), “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.”

Ask God to give you a new perspective.

He just might surprise you and give it to you.

Photo Source: Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

6 thoughts on “The A, B, C’s of Self-Motivation: A Biblical Perspective

  1. Great message and ideas to get the motivation I need. I especially like the idea of change of perspective. This really helps me.

  2. I’m glad to have the opportunity to read this again. Lots of wisdom in your message. This time I caught myself engaging with the focus on three types of people–“accusers, excusers, and choosers.” I’ve known all those types (and been all upon occasion). I’m blessed that God has been patient with me so that I’m primarily a chooser–see the need and get it done. Thanks, Jim.

  3. I like all of these, Jimmie, but I think the one I like best is asking God for a new perspective. I can get in a rut and then can’t figure out why I’m not “motivated.” Thanks for the tip!

  4. Jimmie, you have written a message to motivate! Perfect time of year to remind us that we have the ability to choose how we will react in all circumstances. God is with us to help us choose wisely.

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