Pursuing excellence over perfection

Amanda Leadership, Spiritual Formation Leave a Comment

I have this dream of the “perfect” Sunday and I catch myself regularly pursuing that dream.  A Sunday in VictoryKids with no bumps looks like enough leaders, no behavioral issues, perfect lessons, and perfect guest services for every family.

Now – there are some parts of that dream that are right and good because it’s good to desire for a great service to reach kids with the hope of Jesus.  We know that bumps sometimes can detract from each child experiencing God’s love personally.  We also know that bumps can sometimes take away from children building meaningful relationships with leaders and being well cared for.  So yes – bumps aren’t always helpful.

However, pursuing perfection is not always from my heart being in righteous alignment with God.  Sometimes I’m seeking the perfect Sunday because I like to be perfect.  That’s right, I said it, I like to be perfect.  I often (wrongly) view perfection as easier.  If I’m perfect, then I don’t have to deal with sin, personal growth, or relational work.  I can just “sit back” and enjoy a Sunday of patting myself on my back for my success in orchestrating a perfect Sunday (ugh! even typing that brings more conviction upon my heart).

So Sundays usually have bumps.  I’m learning to look at them as opportunities.  I’m also learning to ask Jesus to show me what He’s doing when He allows them to happen.  I’m learning to approach them with gratitude too.  It hasn’t been easy to train my mind and heart to do this, but I think it’s essential for each leader as we minister on Sunday mornings.  I mean, Kids’ Ministry is a messy thing.  We can’t predict meltdowns or computer difficulties.  We can’t prevent conflict or mistakes.  We can, however, plan our gracious and Spirit-filled responses.

There’s a much deeper reflection that comes with how I hope for a “perfect” Sunday.  I want to be a perfect person – which we know is absolutely impossible.  When I live like that, I rob myself of the grace of Jesus and living a life rooted in faith.  Every time I think that I can be perfect, I’m simply undermining the power of the cross in my own life.

Instead of pursuing perfection in ministry and in life, I’m choosing to pursue excellence instead.  Jesus still wants excellence in each one of us, but it’s not because of what we can do, but rather, what He can do in and through us.  I’m learning to hold my weakness up to Him (including my desire to be perfect) and trade it in for His strength.  I’m choosing to work towards excellence for Gospel and the children of the Greater Norristown area.

2 Corinthians 8:7 But as you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, and in all eagerness and in the love from us that is in you—make sure that you excel in this act of kindness too.

Interested in investigating the biblical concept of pursuing excellence further?  I enjoyed THIS article’s scriptural references and also their deeper reflections on the pursuit of excellence.

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