The word excellent is one that has become much overused and under valued in our society. In fact it has become almost common. We hear the word excellent being used to describe the latest movie, a nice car or home, a good friendship and the list goes on… Many people use the word without even thinking about what they are attaching this word to. Because of this the the pride and esteem, that the word should evoke is no longer there.
I myself have been guilty of misusing the word, not deliberately but from a genuine misunderstanding. I had been looking at and defining excellence according to a secular viewpoint. The world’s view on the subject is totally different from God’s viewpoint.
Excellence is defined by Webster’s dictionary as the possession chiefly of good qualities in an unusual degree. Hence, according to this definition if you’re perceived as dressed fashionably much more than unfashionably, then you have excellent fashion sense, If your house is clean and spotless more than it’s untidy, then you have excellent housekeeping skills, If you’re almost always present at work , do a job that impresses your employer then you are an excellent employee. While you may be all of these things are your really walking in the spirit of excellence?
The world I realize, seem to view excellence as having the best or highest paying jobs, the best clothes, cars, houses, being in the elite group in society, or being the best at whatever you do. However, I’ve realized that following society’s definition of excellence I will never measure up. If society’s paradigm were followed there wouldn’t be enough room at the top for everyone to walk in the spirit of excellence. Yes, I may be the best for a while but sooner or later someone better will come along.
There will always be someone with more education, a better job, a bigger paycheck, more beautiful clothes a nicer home etc. With all of this in my mind I had to redefine my view of excellence.
And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, Colossians 1:10
Part one of the Bible Study, I mentioned in my previous post was titled, Excellence –A Goal Worth Pursuing. As I went through the study I came up with my own simple “definition” of what it means to have the spirit of excellence and walk in it based on a few scriptures I read:
As I continued my quest for excellence I came to realize that while it seemed hard to measure up before, the world's standard requires me to give a whole lot less of myself than God’s standards because He expects us to give our all. There is a price to pay for excellence but, there is so much to gain...
Walking in the spirit of excellence, God's way, begins first of all with having God’s love in your heart. It also includes walking in God’s way and doing the things that he expects of you, in a way that pleases him, even if it is different from what the world says. Walking in excellence as a believer means striving to gain God's approval in everything you do not matter how big or how small. It doesn't mean doing things perfectly but it does mean doing your best.
January 22, 2004
Women’s Ministry Meeting
Come back Monday to read part 3: