Devotions

Author Archives: Pastor Roy Townsend

Church • Devotion #2: Motives Make the Man (or Woman)

Ever hear the saying, “Motives make the man?” That is the impulse behind your actions that ultimately determine if it was honorable or not. Even in our legal system, the intent of a person to harm someone brings about more severe punishment. However, even when something good happens, the motive behind it should be honorable.  

When I was working with students in a school setting, I had someone take another student’s backpack with all their books and devices. When I had eventually tracked it down, I had camera footage of the student taking her bag. He left the building and put the bag in the trunk of his car. So, I called the student into my office and when he arrived, I noticed he had an identical backpack. I went from believing that he stole the backpack to realizing that he may have taken the wrong back-pack. I showed him the footage of him putting the backpack into his trunk. We went out to his car trunk, and there the other backpack was sitting with all the books and devices. So the question was, “Did he steal the backpack?” I did not think so. It was unfortunate, but I did not believe his motive or intent was to steal the backpack.

Romans 12:17 reads, “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.” Further, 2 Corinthians 8:21 states, “For we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man.” These verses are a perfect challenge in today’s world, and apparently, they were pretty important words when the Bible was written. Remember, the “motives make the man or woman.” We have been instructed by God to do what is honorable from every perspective. This can be hard. I have worked with a lot of families that really only want obedience from their children, but I would challenge parents that you want obedience with the right motives. We as parents want children to do the right things for the right reasons.God wants the same from His children. He does not just want us to follow the rules, but He wants us to love Him in a way that we want to follow the rules. Our motives are important to accomplishing this goal. In 1 Peter 2:12, we read, “Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.” Doing the right things with the right motives will allow the world to see God through our actions. We need to remember, the world is looking for us to do the right thing for the right reasons!

Reach • Testimony #4: Roy Townsend

I have been blessed with the influence of senior adults in my life. I grew up on a street that had several elderly people as neighbors, and I grew up with the influence of my grandmother, who we called Granny. These individuals shared an unquestionable love for me, and due to their age and wisdom, they were willing to tell me what I needed to know. I was fascinated by their lives’ stories, and they were fascinated by my interest in their lives. Looking back, I can see how special it was to have these senior saints who loved me. 

Granny was a special kind of soul. She was loved by her children and grandchildren immensely. She was a grandma from a by-gone era. She believed that her main purpose in life was to love God and love her children (grandchildren). She worked around the farm and household, always wore a dress, loved to cook food for anyone, and lived out a life of sacrifice for her family. She really did not have much in the way of worldly possessions, but she was one of the richest people that I have ever known when it comes to loving relationships. She demonstrated that love and care for her family by making sure that her loved ones had heard the truth of Jesus Christ as the Savior of the world.

I had an extra-special relationship with Granny because I would spend the night on the weekend and attend church with her on Sunday. So, from a very young age, I heard the truth that every one of us sins, and because of that sin, we cannot get to Heaven on our own merits. However, not to worry because Jesus Christ came to Earth and died on a cross for my sins. So, if I believe in Him and ask Him to forgive me, I could spend eternity with Him in Heaven. She was so clear in her love for me and her love for Jesus that I really wanted to accept this gift from Jesus Christ. 

At the age of five, I jumped up into her bed early on a Sunday morning and asked her to help me accept the gift. We prayed, and I asked Jesus to forgive me based upon my belief in Him. Since then, I have had my ups and downs in my spiritual walk, but I believe that Jesus Christ wanted me, and I am not ashamed of Jesus or what He has done in my life.

The love of my family, these senior saints, and Granny was a foundation for the love of Jesus Christ, and when times get tough I find encouragement in these verses, “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39). Nothing will be able to keep me away from God’s love. I find great encouragement in these verses. I thank you God for sending your Son to save the world from its wrongs.



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