Excellence in our Calling
From You Verison
Excellence is not just an end goal but a way of life for Christians. Colossians 4:23 reminds us that whatever we do, we should work at it as if we are working for the Lord himself. This means that our pursuit of excellence should not be limited to our spiritual lives but should also extend to our work and personal lives.
Kent Hughes once said, “Christians ought to be the best workers wherever they are. They ought to have the best attitude, the best integrity, and be the best in dependability”. Many of us forget to demonstrate excellence in our workplace while pursuing our career ambitions. But whatever we do, whether in our personal lives or the workplace, excellence should be achieved as it is the ultimate destination.
Chuck Swindoll says, “The secret of living a life of excellence is merely a matter of thinking thoughts of excellence. Really, it’s a matter of programming our minds with the kind of information that will set us free”. To live a life of excellence, we must start by programming our minds with thoughts of excellence, as Chuck Swindoll suggests. We should strive to be the best workers wherever we are, with the best attitude, integrity, and dependability. This can only be achieved if we constantly build upon our basic workplace/life skills, such as communication, leadership, organisation, and time management.
The secret to being excellent in the workplace has three ingredients.
1. Be strongly grounded on the basics.
The question in Psalm 11:3 is: When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do? It does not refer to law and order alone. It applies to our corporate life as well. If we compare it to a building, the foundations upon which it rests are the basic skills. We must constantly build upon our crucial workplace/life skills, including communication (verbal and written), leadership, organisation, time management, etc. These form the basis for more advanced skills, such as persuasion, negotiation, crisis management, and conflict resolution. The more finely honed your basic skills are, the more you will excel in your job.
2. Be part of an Inner Circle.
In addition to building our skills, we should surround ourselves with an inner circle of people who can support and challenge us. The ‘Big 7’ mentioned in this devotional can guide the creation of such a circle. By having an encourager, mentor, mentee, someone with a different way of working, a successful peer, and different parents in our inner circle, we can receive the support, guidance, and accountability we need to continue striving for excellence.
a. Barnabas, an encourager
b. Paul, a mentor
c. Timothy, your mentee
d. Mark, whose ways of working are different from yours
e. Peter, who is equally successful in job/ministry
f. Aquila & g. Priscila, the ministry partners
3. Become a learning sponge.
Proverbs 21:16 says, ‘A man that wanders out of the way of wisdom shall remain in the congregation of the dead.’ Do not rest on your laurels. Get out there each day, challenge yourself to learn something new, and inculcate the spirit of ‘Lifelong learning. ‘ Finally, we should become lifelong learners, always seeking to grow in wisdom and knowledge. Proverbs 21:16 reminds us that wandering away from wisdom leads to spiritual death. By cultivating a learning mindset and being open to new ideas and experiences, we can continue to grow and develop personally and professionally.
As we strive for excellence in our calling, remember to do so as if we are working for the Lord himself. By following these principles, we can live a life of excellence that glorifies God and blesses those around us. Let us pray that the Lord helps us develop an excellent mindset in all that we think and do.
Lord, let me be excellent by working for You in my calling. Amen