We approach God and undertake a life of virtue for very mixed motives—some of which we are initially unaware of. Typically, it is in the disappointment of some of our expectations of God not being met that our deeper motivations come out of hiding. James and John’s desire to be at Christ’s right and left in his kingdom could have been motivated purely by love and a desire to be physically close to him; however, in the light of the discussion that followed it seems more likely that these two disciples were also seeking power and influence and not just proximity to Jesus. Nevertheless, this does not disqualify them and Jesus accepts their still mixed motivations knowing that these will be purified in the crucible of persecution and suffering. So too with us, our slow growth in self-knowledge includes the painful uncovering of self-centered and self-serving motivations that likewise have to be purified and ennobled. Only in this way can our true and eternal good be realized and those shortsighted and superficial expectations be exposed for their futility and inability to bring us true peace and eternal joy.