Monday, January 13, 2014

Organizational Excellence?

As I shared in my last post, being organized does not exactly come naturally to me. So why force myself to organize my apartment? It undoubtedly grates against my personal make-up, and it may even prove pointless given my pre-disposition for clutter. Why not just "accept who I am" and "let the chips fall where they may"?

I assure you, those proverbial chips would look nothing like this if I let them fall.

Answer: As Christians, we are called to excellence--not to mediocrity or to meeting the status quo (whatever that might be).

Paul writes,
"And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ." (Colossians 3:23-24)
It is so easy to let excuse after excuse get in the way of accomplishing anything that we should. More importantly, we allow excuses to prevent us from accomplishing goals with excellence. I share this fact with my students sometimes, because as Christians it is an easy one to forget. (For them, I relate it more to their homework when it is faltering or sub-par.)

I, of course, am not immune from this sinful pattern of excuse-making. Here are some excuses that I have convinced myself of in the past. See if they sound familiar.

Excuse #1: "I am overweight because I do not have the time to exercise."
Nope. I was overweight because I did not make time to exercise. Yes, I was working several jobs, I was going to school full time, and I was a pastor's wife (which is a job in itself). But I made time for other activities, like watching movies and gardening.  Surely, I could wake up twenty minutes earlier every day and walk. I simply chose not to.

I also let food become an idol that I sought after for comfort and acceptance. As Philippians 3 states, my god was my belly. I had become a glutton, and gluttony, my friends, is a sin. Let's just call it what it is. If you want to learn more about what helped me break free of my excuses and lose some weight, you can read this post.

Excuse #2: "I do not spend time in the Bible because I do not know how to study it."

You need to surrender your studying of His Word to Him. Who better to ask about the Bible than the One who wrote it? As James writes in chapter 1, "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him" (v.5). 

The theme of the entire book of Proverbs focuses on the importance of obtaining God's wisdom.  Try reading a Proverb a day! For example, today is the 13th, so read Proverbs 13.
One final verse for this excuse: "Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not..." (Proverbs 4:5-9) Do not let excuses stunt your spiritual growth, my friends. (If you need more practical pointers to get started, check out this post.)

pray that in the

                                                                            and mental 

realms of your life that you would stop making excuses. What's more, I hope and pray that you achieve excellence in every single area of your life. If we are in Christ, we have the ability to do just that if we ask Him for His help, His direction, and His guidance. Yes, He certainly will--at some point--reveal something about ourselves that is not easy to hear, but we need to heed His words. We need to let His wisdom permeate our world. 

Will you let Him permeate your world?