The captain of my son’s college soccer team once said: “You have to be an honest accountant of your own game.” Is your deficit in footwork? speed? quickness? passing skills? seeing the field? Tell the truth, he said, and work on the weak spots.
Seminary students do not usually look to sports/business metaphors for insight, but this advice provides a good word for everyone who reads and writes for the sake of the gospel. How do we communicate more precisely, think more clearly, read with greater insight? We start by telling the truth about our “game.”
A good writer/reader is self-aware and able to accurately tally personal strengths and weaknesses. Am I a procrastinator? Am I too wordy? What is my academic background in relation to the expected work? Put the credits and debits in the proper columns.
How do you correct shortfalls, fill gaps, improve skills? Coaches are all around: librarians, advisors, professors, tutors. There are glossaries, online writing labs, and encyclopedias. Develop a realistic plan to persistently move forward. If something doesn’t work, figure out how to fix, or at least improve it.