Ever had your car's check engine light come on? It's not a pleasant feeling. You never really know why the light came on so you start asking yourself a lot of questions like:
Is it something simple and inexpensive or is it major and pricey?
How long will my car be out of commission?
Will the dealership give me a loaner vehicle?
Is it covered under warranty?
And ALL of these questions you ask before you even know what the problem is! To get to the answer you will need to have a diagnostic test done to determine the issue. That check engine light is just letting you know something is going on underneath the surface that needs to be addressed soon if not immediately. Unfortunately, some people ignore the light until the vehicle just stops working one day leaving them stranded on the side of the road. What potentially started off as a small, inexpensive problem is now a major issue!
What if you had a "Check Your Motives" light? What if that light came on every time you did something that appeared to be "good", "kind" or "right"? Would you pay attention to it or would you ignore it? According to my Google search, a motive is a reason for doing something, especially a reason that is hidden or not obvious. People may not be able to see if your motives are pure...but God does. God knows exactly why you do everything you do even those things that appear to be done with good intentions. God knows if you are really doing your "good deeds" for pride-driven attention and self- glory or if you really are doing things to magnify and glorify the Lord. Romans 8:8 (NLT) says "That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God." No matter how good the deed is, if you are doing it to satisfy your flesh (the sinful nature), it will NOT please God.
In Matthew chapter 6 Jesus issues a warning against doing good things publicly simply for the benefit of recognition. We are to do all things to the glory of God; isn't He the One who has given us the ability to do those things anyway?
As Christians, we do have a "check engine light" and He is the Holy Spirit. According to Romans 8:27, the Holy Spirit knows what's in our heart. Ask Him to reveal your motives to you. And if they are self-serving motives, ask the Lord to remove them and to help you to have God-focused motives as instructed in Matthew 6:33. The Holy Spirit of the living God will let you know what's going on underneath the surface so the necessary repairs and adjustments can be made before your wrong motives lead you to a complete and total breakdown.
God bless you and stay encouraged!