Spirit of Excellence
I was watching the Super Bowl halftime show a few weeks back and man what a show! Even if you didn’t like the artists you have to admit the things they were doing with the lighting and stage were pretty cool. Not to mention the fact that they could direct several hundred people to move in sync on the field in cool illuminated suits. It always amazes me how much effort is put into planning and executing a concert of that magnitude. We’re not talking days but months of preparation. I was watching the latest Michael Jackson documentary “This Is It” and again I was floored at how much thought and preparation was put into the lighting, dance moves, everything. At this point I should mention that, yes, I was a Michael Jackson fan and, yes, I had a red zipper jacket at one time. Ok, I feel better letting that out. Now you may be asking… “Trevor, what does this have to do with UK for Jesus?” Everything, but it doesn’t just have to do with us but the church as a whole.It’s important that individuals and ministries grasp the importance of the spirit of excellence.
Do you ever wonder why an artist like Lady GaGa and Bruno Mars can fill a stadium but the church that holds the presence of God struggles to fill even half of its seats? I believe part of the reason is there is a lack of the spirit of excellence. We tend to look at lighting, sound, and stage presence in the wrong light. Some of the comments I’ve heard before were “we don’t want it to be a show” or “God doesn’t require all that stuff… just a willing heart.” Does this sound familiar? I think we are looking at “stuff” in the wrong way.
First of all, this is a show for the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, but it’s so much more than that. Let me put it this way… we are putting on a party and the guest of honor is God. Now, if I stopped here and asked you how you’d rate your party what do you think it would be? Would it be the most thought out sincere party you’ve ever planned with the best decorations and party favors or would it be a last minute get together with instant pudding and a poster board sign that says surprise on it? We’ve all been there. The struggle between sincerity and show is one thing that everyone in ministry has to deal with. But what about those who aren’t in ministry? Everything that we do as Christians is a living, breathing example of God and a statement to God. Take a look at Exodus 26 and Moses’ Tabernacle. God didn’t tell him it would be ok for him to throw something together and call it the Lord’s. No, He gave Moses specific plans. But why? Does God care about stuff? I think God did this for three reasons. First, for the people. God loves His people and wants only the best for them. He wanted to give them a place that would make them say “wow” when they fist walked into the courtyard. Our life should present the “wow” factor of God. Second, He wanted to give an impossible task that couldn’t be done without Him. I found that as I read chapter 26 I quickly became overwhelmed with the intricacies of God’s plan. Again, I think this was part of His plan. To fulfill God’s plan it will take more than what we can do on our own. He gave specifics to teach Moses to obey and not cut corners for the sake of opening the doors a month early. The key word here is obey. Third, He wanted a place that was worthy of housing His presence. He deserves the absolute best and as His people we should strive to give Him the very best that we have.
Now most of you that are reading this may not be ministers but that doesn’t mean you are excluded from pursuing the spirit of excellence. Remember, everything that we do as Christians is a living, breathing example of God and a statement to God. It doesn’t matter if you are a stay at home mom or the President of the United States, if you are a Christian then your life is making a statement about Him. I know this may seem a bit harsh to some but the truth is the truth. My daughter Brooklyn should be a reflection of Connie and I, but I know that sometimes, ok many times, she doesn’t act like we’d like her to but that’s part of human nature. How does this tie in with our topic? Well, even if Brooklyn isn’t really reflecting our character that doesn’t mean an onlooker won’t think to themselves “That’s just poor parenting.” Wow, that’s deep. So, here’s my final thought of the day. If we are a reflection of God and the world as a whole is denying God, shouldn’t we take another look at the structure of our mirror? After all we know that what’s in the reflection is perfect. Maybe, we’ve cut some corners that shouldn’t have been cut. Maybe we’ve shortened our daily time with God, relaxed our morals, or let our services become that thrown together party instead of a purposely thought out plan to reflect God in all His glory? If we want to see this world radically changed and consumed with the heart of God then it starts with us reflecting the spirit of excellence that God so greatly deserves. Remember, Philippians 4:13 says “I can do all things in him that strengthens me.” If this seems like it’s an impossible task, it is without Him. But with God ALL things are possible!
May the Lord keep you and may His face shine upon you!