Thursday, December 29, 2011

Well Done, Good Job

I just read a report of two officers who, while on routine patrol, observed a guy breaking into a car.   They pulled him out of the car and then located the owner who was grateful that nothing had been taken.  There have been a lot of car break-ins in this part of town and I'm sure that not only did the officers prevent this car owner from being a victim but they probably prevented several other people from being victims.   I thought the officers did a great job so I wrote them up for a "Supervisory Notice."  It's nothing big.  It's just a piece of paper from a supervisor that goes into their personnel jacket.  It's not like they are getting a medal or a certificate or anything like that.

I really don't know who will appreciate the Supervisory Notice more--the officers or me.  It was really nice to give the officers a pat on the back---an atta boy.  Sometimes, I feel as a supervisor that I spend too much time being negative, despite my best efforts to be positive.  It gets tiresome to be critical of someone because they aren't doing what they are supposed to be doing or not working hard enough.  It's much more fun to be complimentary.

I have to wonder if that is what God feels like when we do what is right and pleasing to Him.  When we DON'T sin.  I wonder if he feels the joy and adulation that I do when I see my people working hard and making good arrests.

I can see several parallels.  For instance, I can see how it is easier to sin and not to be pleasing to God.  After all, it's easy to sin.  Sin is fun.  Many times there doesn't seem be any punishment for not sinning.  It's difficult to see the rewards.

In the same way, I can see how it's easier not to work hard.  Officers who work hard are more likely to get hurt and more likely to get complained on.   You are less likely to get in trouble if you just do the minimum.  You don't get paid more for working hard.  It's difficult to see any rewards.

I think in both circumstances, you have go beyond physical rewards and punishments.  In order for us to want to be pleasing to God and in order for us NOT to want to sin we have to have a lot of faith.  We have to develop a relationship with God and break the chains of sin.  In order for us to want to be good workers and develop a nature of working hard, we have to take pride in what we do for a living.  We have to enjoy what we do and really see the big picture.  

I know for me, I like to get atta-boys.  I like it when people acknowledge that I've done a good job.  But, lets face it--no award or certificate is going to compare to hearing the words from my Father, "well done, my good and faithful servant."


  1. This is a good analogy. I find it's true, too, as a I dislike having to correct my children or discipline them but how much happiness I feel when they receive compliments from others on their behavior or even when I witness them being loving to each other. Before Confession, while doing my examination of conscience and also while in confession, I am often overcome with the feelings I have knowing that i have disappointed God in my sinfulness. But I'm glad Father often reminds me how happy God is that I have returned to God, confessed, and ready to begin again and try not to sin. I think God must have so much joy when we do well and even when we recognize our failures, apologize and do penance.

    Thanks for this post, Jamie. You're on a roll lately. :)

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