Ending the Year with Greatness

Do you work hard all of the time or only when others are watching you?

As an educator, I’m constantly evaluated on my performance. Most employees should expect to give an account for their work. However, shaping the minds of the future brings about an extra dose of pressure.

At any moment, an administrator can walk through my classroom door. The school leaders often check to see my students’ level of engagement in response to the day’s lesson or tasks.  The “check-in’s,” are used as a tool to increase, rather than harm, my productivity. Each visit is followed by constructive feedback, noting what I’m doing well in the classroom as well as suggestions for future growth. While I take the time to plan and prepare for each day, I still find myself concerned at times. It’s a bit unsettling to never know when someone will be checking my performance.

Be on Alert

In the same manner that we give an account to our boss at work, we too must give an account to God for our lives. How would we behave if we knew that Jesus could “walk through the door” at any moment? How much time do we concern ourselves with making sure that we’re pleasing Him?

The Word of God tells us to “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming” (Matthew 25:13). We don’t know when Jesus will return, but we should be on alert, fulfilling our purpose.

As 2014 comes to a close, now is a great time to reflect on your performance this year. How would you rate yourself this year? Are you doing what you believe God has called you to do? Are you making the most of your time?
It’s never too late to start making new changes or adjustments.

The following are a few suggestions to end the year with greatness:

1) Pray. This is more of a necessity than a suggestion. I know it sounds simple, but it’s the most important thing that we can do. As we spend time with the Lord in prayer, He will direct our lives. In addition, praying causes us to be more discerning of God’s will. (Proverbs 3:5-6)

2) Plan. You don’t have to wait until the new year to begin working on your goals. Is there something that you’d like to accomplish? Would you like to start a business or learn a new language? Write it down! As a child, my dad taught me to make a list of goals that I wanted to reach in the new year. As time progressed, I could check up on my goals, and make adjustments, as necessary. I felt proud and accomplished for reaching my goals. (Proverbs 16:9)

In addition to planning our goals, it’s also important to be realistic and specific about what we seek to accomplish. New York Times Best-Selling writer and blogger, Michael Hyatt, shares some great tips on his site about goal planning.

3) Prepare. Goal planning can include every area of our lives, not just a few areas. Have you ever thought about having a life plan? I first heard about this concept through Michael Hyatt. While the Lord certainly directs us, we can be intentional about what we accomplish in life. Building Champions has great tools and resources to help you accomplish your goals. You may have to register to get full details, but their life plan template (modified by Hyatt) is a good resource for getting started on preparing for your future.

God has great things in store for you! Pray, plan, and prepare to receive a greater harvest in 2015!

 

Sharisse M. Alexander

Sharisse M. Alexander is an educator and author of In His Presence. A graduate of Hampton University, Hampton, VA, she also received her Master of Arts in Teaching Degree from Wingate University, Charlotte, NC. Sharisse has worked in Christian ministry for several years and enjoys encouraging others in the Word of God.

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