Far Exceeds

“God’s plan for your life, far exceeds the circumstances of your day.” As the end of the year is here, it is customary to review our performance with our manager / employer. The first step often is a “self-appraisal” that we prepare and present to our boss for consideration. This process typically entails a review of our goals and objectives for the year, an assessment of how well we did in terms of our job responsibilities, an evaluation of our work effort, and ends with our perspective concerning our strengths and “opportunities for improvement.” And many times we are asked to rate ourselves on the company’s rating scale – e.g., far exceeds, exceeds many, meets all, meets some, fails to meet.

What would it look like if you did a self-appraisal with your Creator / God?

We would start with our job responsibilities, which could be summed up in a few words … Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. And, Love your neighbor as yourself.

From there we could move on to the Ten Commandments, the Beatitudes, the “Whatever You Did to the Least of My Brothers” responsibilities. How would you and I rate ourselves? Outstanding? Very Good? Satisfactory? Needs Improvement? What specific examples do we have to support our rating?

We then would move on to the section on how we get the work done … things like problem-solving, organizing people and resources to accomplish tasks, handling pressure, following through, meeting deadlines, achieving balance between work quality and quantity, taking responsibility for actions, cooperating with others, having a positive attitude, listening to feedback well, striving to do the best job possible, and so forth. How would we evaluate our prayer life, loving one another in our relationships, extending forgiveness, honoring the Sabbath, serving the poor, multiplying our talents, being humble, giving thanks?

Finally, we come to the last page – the identification of strengths and those darn “opportunities for improvement.” And the bottom line – our overall rating / grade / score.

This process feels quite daunting and intimidating to me. Yet very valuable and meaningful if I truly want to serve God with all my heart, soul, mind, and body. And the amazing news is that we always get the maximum reward! No matter what our performance! Because God gave us His Son to redeem us. His Love is not conditional on your or my performance. God “far exceeds” all the time.