It is beneficial to have an honest judgment or realistic evaluation of our strengths and weaknesses. This enables us to see the potential pitfalls and address them, while intentionally living out our strengths. An assessment should be a balanced exercise – a mix of encouragement for what we do well and progress made while also highlighting deficiencies and giving helpful suggestions how to improve in areas that are below par. If there is only praise, this can lead to pride and the mistaken belief there is nothing to improve, while if the assessment only focuses on faults this can shatter a person’s self-esteem The angelic messenger to the seven churches commended them yet also outlined their deficiencies (Rev 2:1-3:22).

We should judge or review ourselves, and through these appraisals see the areas that need attention. However, we all have blind spots that are obvious to others yet we can’t see. Hence, we should be in relationship and accountability to others who are free to speak into our lives. A spiritual mentor or guide may be helpful.

The Bible’s directive is, “Speak the truth in love” (Eph 4:15). Both truth and love are necessary components for constructive feedback. We need to be secure in ourselves to invite others to evaluate us, as we acknowledge there is room for improvement and thus the opportunity for growth. We must respect the viewpoint of those we intentionally ask for feedback while following through on the recommendations is vital.

Only by a conscious effort can change occur as we accept the viewpoint of others and focus on correcting these areas. The Bible asks, what is the value in seeing what needs correcting and doing nothing about it so it urges us to, ponder or consider the path of our feet, to examine and test ourselves (Prov 4:26; 2 Cor 13:5; Jas 1:22-25). Regular

    To be of value an assessment              must be followed with action

reviewing of everything we do is a healthy activity. We then can determine what can be eliminated from our lives and what should be encouraged so we come closer to fulfilling His call on our lives and living for Him through an intimate heart relationship, not lifeless head knowledge.

See also: accountability, examine, judging, strength, weakness.

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