As celebration of Passover and Jesus' Resurrection approaches, now is a good time to sign up for A Year with Jesus
 Home: Articles: Leading in Hope: Facing Evaluations
Facing Evaluations

Facing Evaluations

by on
Category: Leading in Hope
It takes a lot of courage, to put things in God's hands,
To give ourselves completely, our lives, our hopes, our plans.
To follow where God leads us and make His will our own.
But all it takes is foolishness, to go the way alone! (Betsey Kline, "Trusting God")

Many of you have been or will be evaluated by someone. You feel anxious. You work to prepare a report that accurately reflects what you do. On the day of the meeting you pay more attention to the way you dress in order to look professional. You may even practice saying several of your statements out loud.

For most, your fears were greatly exaggerated. The evaluation went well. For a few, your fears were accurate and there are disappointments to be faced and dealt with.

Being evaluated can be a genuinely frightening experience.

I know because I am evaluated regularly. My supervisor is kind and gracious but she has high expectations for me and the churches I serve.

But truthfully, the real evaluation doesn't come at work. The real evaluation comes within our relationship and our service to God. All of us answer to God. How are we doing?

Paul wrote a letter to a young minister named Timothy and in the midst of the letter provided evaluation standards to be measured by:
If you explain these things to the brothers and sisters, Timothy, you will be a worthy servant of Christ Jesus, one who is nourished by the message of faith and the good teaching you have followed. Do not waste time arguing over godless ideas and old wives' tales. Instead, train yourself to be godly.

"Physical training is good, but training for godliness is much better, promising benefits in this life and in the life to come."

This is a trustworthy saying, and everyone should accept it. This is why we work hard and continue to struggle, for our hope is in the living God, who is the Savior of all people and particularly of all believers. Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them. Don't let anyone think less of you because you are young. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity. Until I get there, focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them
(1 Timothy 4:6-13 nlt).

Paul gives Timothy nine standards worthy of evaluation:

  1. Explain these things to the brothers and sisters.
  2. Be a worthy servant of Christ who is nourished by the message of faith and the good teaching you have followed.
  3. Do not waste time arguing over godless ideas.
  4. Train yourself to be godly.
  5. Work hard and continue to struggle, for our hope is in the living God.
  6. Teach these things and insist that everyone learn them.
  7. Don't let anyone think less of you.
  8. Be an example to all believers in what you say, in the way you live, in your love, your faith, and your purity.
  9. Focus on reading the Scriptures to the church, encouraging the believers, and teaching them.

I don't know about you but measured by those standards, I definitely come up short. Here is the lesson though. Paul did not write to point out our shortcomings. Paul illustrated the standards we are to strive for and to point out, we are not alone in our journey. God is with us in the midst successes, failures, good evaluations and not so good evaluations.

A few years ago, I copied the following poem:

It takes a lot of courage, to put things in God's hands,
To give ourselves completely, our lives, our hopes, our plans.
To follow where God leads us and make His will our own.
But all it takes is foolishness, to go the way alone!

You already demonstrate great courage by putting your life in God's hands. In so many ways, you give yourself completely: your life, your hopes, your plans. Good evaluation or bad, you are called to follow where God leads and make His will your own. Finally ... You are not foolish because you are never, ever alone.

There are many who love you, pray for you and support you. There are others who are greatly impacted by your life and ministry. There are more in the future who will be impacted by you. Finally, God called you, continues to strengthen and encourage you, and always walks with you.

  1. To give ourselves completely, our lives, our hopes, our plans.
  2. To follow where God leads us and make His will our own.
  3. But all it takes is foolishness, to go the way alone!

After writing this, I confess to still feeling anxious about evaluations. After knowing God's standards, feeling God's grace and receiving God's promise to always be walking beside me, I am no longer afraid.

About the Author

Larry Davies
Larry Davies is a used-car salesman turned preacher. He serves at Timberlake UMC, and is the author of several books and the online devotional site Sowing Seeds of Faith.

Comments on 'Facing Evaluations'



Heartlight by Email

Heartlight by Email
Get articles like this one
by email every weekday!


Other Daily Emails from Heartlight

Latest Articles

More from 'Leading in Hope'

View Archives for Leading in Hope

Subscribe via:
Subscribe via Email Subscribe via Facebook Subscribe via RSS