As a Christian for umpteenth years, I have not found a yardstick that can measure my faithfulness in the Lord. My criteria for faithfulness will differ from yours, and yours from others too. So, I always wonder when a pastor or any leader declares another person as good and faithful servant in the Lord – what standards are used?
I am glad I have found the answer. Please read :
1 Corinthians 4:1-7
1 So look at Apollos and me as mere servants of Christ who have been put in charge of explaining God’s mysteries. 2 Now, a person who is put in charge as a manager must be faithful. 3 As for me, it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point. 4 My conscience is clear, but that doesn’t prove I’m right. It is the Lord himself who will examine me and decide.
5 So don’t make judgments about anyone ahead of time—before the Lord returns. For he will bring our darkest secrets to light and will reveal our private motives. Then God will give to each one whatever praise is due.
6 Dear brothers and sisters,[a] I have used Apollos and myself to illustrate what I’ve been saying. If you pay attention to what I have quoted from the Scriptures,[b] you won’t be proud of one of your leaders at the expense of another. 7 For what gives you the right to make such a judgment? What do you have that God hasn’t given you? And if everything you have is from God, why boast as though it were not a gift?
I am glad the Lord will examine me and decide. NO ONE ELSE. Aren't you glad it is so as the other person who examines you and declares you faithful has himself to be examined by the Lord too. So watch out when someone pats you on the shoulder and says you are faithful. It automatically means that some one else is not faithful in comparison with you [v 6....at the expense of another]. Don't be gullible.
The good news is that we can always depend on the faithfullnes of God, not our faithfullness. 2Timothy2:13 says 'If we are unfaithful, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.
Paul's attitude towards all this is summed up in 1Cor 4:3
3 As for me, it matters very little how I might be evaluated by you or by any human authority. I don’t even trust my own judgment on this point.
Praise God. Next time round you miss an accolade from your leader that you are good and faithful servant, don't get angry or lose sleep. It means nothing.