“We judge ourselves by our motives. Other judge us by our actions.”
I jotted this on a napkin yesterday, but can’t remember who wrote it (I’ve been reading and researching multiple books this week). I think it was from Dan Allender’s Leading with a Limp. It is a great insight. It helps me see why, even when I don’t do well, I think I’ve done the right thing. I know my motives (at least to a degree). The only thing those outside can see are my actions. To the degree my motives are unclear, or that my actions are not perceived to be in harmony with my motives, I will be misunderstood. For example, as a leader I hope to make wise choices that are the best even when someone is hurt by that choice. I know my motives, but the action taken feels like an attack to the one hurt, no matter my motive. That’s probably why I feel like I need to apologize a lot!
As I turn this around and look at other’s behavior towards me, I sense the need to work harder at understanding the motives of those who seem to act against me. Of course, maybe they are out to get me …, but probably not! It is amazing that anyone really gets along. This will be an interesting insight to learn more deeply.