“We don’t get paid to teach, we get paid to grade.” Those words were uttered Orientation week as I entered Fuller Seminary. We all let out a chuckle, but now, 14 years later, those words have never rung so true. As I sit here with a stack of Final Exams and tests to grade, the weight of the responsibility of grading a person on their performance in a Bible class and a ministry class weighs heavy on my heart.
How do you evaluate someone’s performance in a Spiritual Disciplines class effectively? Did you pray enough? No? “C-.”
Did you fast? A little. “B.”
Or in a Youth Ministry Course? Do you know how to recruit volunteers? Maybe. “C”
Can you lan a lock-in? I think so. “B+”
The problem of being a forward thinker is that all the methods traditionally used to evaluate people seem inadequate. Essays, multiple choice, true false, papers, etc. all seem to come up a bit short of some ideal that must exist out there somewhere that I have yet to venture.
Spiderman did say, “With great power comes great responsibility.” And now with the great respponsibility of the “Grade” that I am called to place upon my students, I am prayerfully thoughtful of the responsibility that lay on my shoulders, while at the same time, I pray my studetns have a big enough world view to know how little one grades really affects one’s life.