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After we pay the mortgage, utility bills, tithe and other obligations, we pretty will split the money down the middle. With Susan's share she buys groceries, cleaning supplies--you know, girl stuff. My share goes to things like boat repairs, fishing lures, and popcorn at the Dukes' game. (Not really, but I thought it made a pretty good introduction. Though when I read the rough draft to Susan she said "That's about how it is.")

The truth is, Susan is less likely to spend money on herself than I am. She is usually sacrificing so someone else can have something.

Recently, I said to her, "Susan, why don't you take some money out of the bank and get your hair fixed the way you want it?" I wanted her to do something nice for herself.

"Don't you like my hair?"

What's the title of that book--"Women are from Mars, Men are from . . . ?" I just wanted her to treat herself to something nice, that's all. I had no hidden agenda.

She was looking for the message behind the question. She wanted to know my motives.

At one level, motives don't matter. If I faint on a busy street and lay in harm's way, I don't care if you have good motives or not; just get me out of the road. The scripture says, "God loves a cheerful giver." Me? I like all givers. They help pay the bills.

But on another level, motives are what really counts. Real significance comes from the word "Why," not "What." Motives are hidden and secret. No one knows our motives but us. That is, except God.

So Monday night, Susan got her hair cut. Me and my pure motives went to the ball game. The Dukes won their third straight. I won "the lucky signature ad," both my sons caught a foul ball, and I had a large popcorn--bought with my half of the money, of course.

Jan -Mar 
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365 Days includes Volumes 1-4
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Impact Preaching: A Case for the
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