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from the West Wing

Well, we are a little more than half way through the third quarter of this school year. This morning I sent out progress reports for the third through eighth grade students. Progress reports are a reminder of how the student is doing so far in the current quarter, gives a heads up if there are any problems and hopefully give some time before final grades come out to correct any issues.

As I prepared to send the reports out this morning, I got to thinking about how nice it might be if we periodically got a progress report. Don’t we all periodically vow to “turn over a new leaf”, “be a better person”, or “never to THAT again?” And wouldn’t it be nice if after several weeks we got a progress report telling us how we are doing? But, alas, there is no such thing as a progress report for life – or is there?

I think perhaps there is, but we just have to be in tune. Of course, some of them are easy. We decide to lose weight and after two or three weeks we get back on the scale and the report is right before our eyes. Others, however, are not so concrete. We decide to be kinder or more loving. After a couple of weeks, we don’t get a report in our email stating “Good job! You are making wonderful progress on your decision to be kinder.” Instead, if we are really serious about being kinder, we must do some self evaluation. We must continually ask ourselves, whether or not we responded to a particular situation with kindness. We can also ask ourselves whether or not we have been spending time in God’s word and truly abiding in Him, because it is through those activities the progress will be made.

It is always helpful for younger students to receive a progress report that helps them see how they are doing. As we grow older, we need to transition to seeing the value of self-evaluation. True growth, even for the young, occurs when change comes from within rather than from outside our self.

So, what would your progress report say today?

Thanks for listening,

Mrs. West