Summary: We choose what is good enough for us, cars, entertainment and homes. God expects offerings to him to be more thatn good. HE demands excellence.
A Good Little Church
There are a lot of good things in life. We all make choices in what is good enough. Like how many premium channels on our TV. Perhaps extra things that we deserve after all our hard work. The harder we work the more careful we are with our spare time. (I’m not sure about what spare time is exactly.)
Many of us save up time and money to go on nice vacations, drive better cars and even the choice of our homes. Maybe we choose better meals or entertainment over other comforts.
When I was in high school all I needed to do was to keep Cs and an occasional B on my report card to keep my folks from punishing me. You see I learned just enough to keep a good life which meant satisfying my parents ….. barely!
The point is I never really tried to reach any higher. My grades were average perhaps a little below. My parents wanted more and encouraged more.
However, just getting along as a good or average student, more precisely mediocre student, was good enough for me.
Our world has always had two extremes: Today there are some that are ok with just barely getting along even if it is not under their own efforts, they live on government programs to stay alive and the opposite being the people that strive to be the best in everything. Most of the people in the world today are someplace in the middle, average, middle of the road good enough kind of folks.
Today, as I look at our world I wonder what are the differences between good or average and excellent. I definitely don’t want to go the other way.
So, is it several steps? Good …better ….. Best…
I wonder would my life be any better it I tried to be excellent in high school? I believe that it is fortunate that I will never really know the answer.
How about a group, lets say a church. What might the difference be if a church moves from Good to excellent?
Think about this, If you were looking for a church home, would you want to attend a good church? That sounds fine.
OR would you want to attend an excellent church? That sounds better.
As a church we are the people that live in this world that represent God. We are to tell the story about the Son of God and live lives that reflect our belief in these stories.
How well are we doing that?
What grade would we get if our teacher sent a report card?
Poor, Satisfactory, Good Excellent
Perhaps more important, what grade would be good enough for us?
Paul describes the Christian life in Colossians like this, “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” (Colossians 3:17)
Whatever you do… Word or deed..
That sounds like a Christian is never off duty.. like a Christian is to live a “goody two shoes” life.
Why would Paul be concerned that Christians give their best effort in every area?
Probably the most obvious reason is that mediocrity grows into indifference. It is so easy to fall into the trap of settling for the status-quo or good enough instead of spending the effort to strive for excellence.
There is a big difference between doing a pretty good job and doing something with excellence. Excellence always requires much more work and sacrifice.
Consider the sacrifice God made by letting His Son die in our place. Wouldn’t you agree that He deserves the very best we can give in return?
Today we are still looking at some of the foundation principles necessary for a church to grow, we want to take a close look at maintaining a commitment to excellence.
As Christians we need to understand two terms: mediocre and excellence.
Webster defines excellent this way: superior, very good or best of its kind or superior. So excellence is striving to be superior our the absolute best in our efforts.
Webster defines mediocre this way: of moderate or low quality, value, ability, or performance: ordinary, or so-so. I will add good enough.
Mediocre means stale, like lukewarm coffee or room temperature milk, why would we want to be satisfied with good enough?
Revelation describes God’s reaction to mediocre like this:
I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.
God is displeased with mediocre, displeased with anything less than excellent service. He desires the best we have to give.
The best is not the same for all people and only you know when you have done your best because of your relationship and faith.