ASSESSMENT 3. Essay (2,000 words). Choose an aspect of personal development or character formation that you think is important to develop more in order for you to be the authentic person you want to be as you mature and grow in spiritual life. The aspect you choose should help define ‘integrity’ or ‘authenticity’ for you. Put even more simply: What would make you a ‘better person’?
Individual formation is a life-long process. We all need to work with discipline to improve ourselves or our attitudes in life, which happens best when it is a glad response to the gracious forgiveness of God. So, take your chosen aspect of formation or development and write about how a well-known role model has achieved this. For example, you could write about the life of someone famous for honesty, for showing compassion, for creating opportunity through education, for their stewardship, for an important ethical cause or business, a person dedicated to prayer. It should be someone who you consider as a mentor, i.e. whose life work is a model and inspiration to you. Structure your essay after considering how you’d answer the following questions.
a) What is the attribute, quality, aspect of formation, personal development, spiritual growth, character formation, spiritual discipline that you would like to focus on?
b) Identify the person who is influential, a mentor or inspiration in this area of formation.
c) Why is this attribute important for you to develop?
d) What does the Bible say about this quality, aspect of character, personality trait or spiritual discipline?
e) What do you like about the Bible reference? What do you learn about God (including Jesus) from the Bible passage? What do you learn about people from this Bible passage? (Note that Luke’s Gospel and Paul’s Letter to the Christians in Rome can supply what you’d need for this assignment)
f) Do you agree with the Bible perspective? If so, why? If not, why not?
g) What is the context of your mentor’s contribution? What did they do? Where do they do it? What is special about their approach?
h) How do you observe their maturity or skill in this attribute? Can you see growth/change over their life formation?
i) What can you learn from your mentor person that could be applied in your life?
j) How would you start applying this tomorrow (in a practical way)? E.g., What are your first steps to developing this attribute?
k) How will you know if you are developing or changing for the better? For example, one year from now, what would show that you are developing in this attribute? (Goals, aspirations).
Remember this is meant to be an essay not a list of answered questions. Remember to make it personal because it is personal. It’s the culmination of all you have learned through your readings and lectures in Integrative Studies. The only non assigned reading for this essay will be the biographical information you find on your mentor person. Otherwise Assigned reading only. You will be penalised if you try to bring in readings that weren’t assigned or recommended in the Course Unit Outline.
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