End of the semester time. Projects. Finals. Grades. Is there a better feeling than completing a semester; than finishing a semester with a sense of accomplishment? You finished strong! Keep up the great work! Well done!
It seems years of school have built into us a desire for the success that comes with good grades (whether they are reality for us or just a wish). Like most things in life there is both good and bad that flows from the desire and pursuit for good grades and academic achievements. At its best there is an incentive to know, to grow, and to learn so that I might be a member of society that brings something valuable to the people and the world around me. At its worst its drudgery just memorizing facts for a test that won’t matter in ten minutes. No doubt, both are practiced.
I came across Matthew 25:21 again the other day in my Bible reading and was thinking about what it might mean at the end of my life to have a conversation with God about my life. What would it mean to hear, “well done” from God?
“Well done my good and faithful servant. You have been faithful in handling this small amount, so now I will give you many more responsibilities. Let’s celebrate together!’”
God’s tests are different than college. It’s not so easy to hide in a book or in a library and simply rehearse answers that might show up on the online test. A quick read through Matthew 25 shows that Jesus was much more concerned with how we use what God has given us and how that connects with how we respond to the needs of the people around us. First, Jesus speaks about what we have been given and how we invest it to bring forth more…”I gave you five…you’ve made five more.” Well done! Jesus moves on from the stewardship of what we’ve been given by God to address how we care for the hungry, the thirsty, the stranger, the naked, the sick and the imprisoned. Well done?
Well friends, finish the semester well. Rest, study, and steward well the resources, the mind, the opportunities and the gifts that God has given you. Just remember at the end of the day, the test that really matters is not one we can cram for or cheat on. I pray that we live in such a manner that we all might hear our Father say, “well done!”