A spritely little unicorn sticker greeted me in the top right corner of my paper. It was the kind of sticker with a holographic ring around it; you know the kind that shimmers as the light dances across it. Next to the sticker, neatly lettered in cursive, the words “Well done.” I was elated, proud that my hard work had paid off. This little mythical creature brought an easy smile to my face.
One of my more playful seminary professors, Kae Evenson, likes to add these little pops of joy to seminary students’ papers. (I bet you thought this was elementary school – nope!) She thinks we take ourselves too seriously and need to revel in simple joys. While it certainly did bring me joy, I must admit it also brought a since of pride and approval.
The truth is – I do crave affirmation. I like to hear that my efforts have not been lost in the sea of busy-work and busy-ness. I like to hear that my time has been well used and my labor was not in vain. And while I do feel so loved and cared, sometimes this praise doesn’t come as readily as my fragile ego demands.
Sound familiar? On not so grace-filled days, do you find yourself waiting? Waiting for a friend to recognize how dedicated you are. Waiting for a boss to praise your diligence and productivity. Waiting for your family to realize that dirty clothes don’t wash themselves and tasty meals don’t just appear?
One of my favorite songs we sing at Celebration is Well Done by Moriah Peters. The tune is delightful, the musical stylings excellent and the words speak to my heart. It goes a little something like this:
So when my life’s a leap of faith, I can hear you say, Well Done. Well Done.
I’m gonna chase you Lord, I’m gonna show the world your love.
I’ll run. I’ll run. I’m gonna run this race just to hear you say well done.
This is the praise we need. Well done. In one of Jesus’ parables, the obedient servant is greeted with praise, “Well done good and faithful servant” (Matthew 25:21). While a little praise from this world is always welcome – it is fleeting. This affirmation from Jesus is the one I really long to hear. I need to hear that I am good. I need to be reminded that I am faithful. And I need to hear that this goodness and faithfulness flows from God who loves me beyond measure, just as I am. And with this, I can run the race with perseverance knowing that God says, Well Done. And the playful God I know likely has a shiny unicorn sticker, too.
It’s just a thought.
Here’s a link to Well Done for your listening pleasure: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uu1VwK0fY9g