The Mark of Excellence

ExcellenceWhen I was still working in the field of personal development, I heard a story that I hope will be a source of great encouragement to you today.

A man was walking past a block-long construction site and saw some workers laying bricks. He asked one of the workers what he was doing; the man replied, “What does it look like I’m doing? I’m laying these dumb bricks!” The man walked a little further and asked another worker the same question. “I am part of the team putting up the walls,” the second worker replied. Walking a little further, the man asked a third worker the same question. This man replied with a smile, “I am building a magnificent monument to the glory of Almighty God!”

How would you respond if someone asked you what you were doing in your work today? The mark of excellence is found only on the person who can honestly respond by saying, “I am building a magnificent monument to the glory of Almighty God!” It really doesn’t matter what it is you are doing in life . . . whether you are a butcher, baker, or candlestick maker. It is not what you do that matters so much as why and how you do it that creates the mark of excellence.

Regardless of your gifting, you have the opportunity to create excellence in all you do simply by doing it all for the glory of God. If God’s glory is your goal, then the work you are doing is marked by excellence. The very first question of the Westminster Shorter Catechism asks, “What is the chief end of man?” And the answer is . . .

The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.

Notice there is no job classification or higher education indicated here. The chief purpose for you and me in everything we do is simply to glorify God.

So . . . are you glorifying God is all you are doing today? How could you bring God more glory in your current calling? Don’t be one of those people who think they will rise to the level of excellence when they finally find that perfect job in life. For one thing, there are no perfect jobs this side of heaven, just as there are no perfect people. But, more importantly, if you don’t rise to the level of excellence right now, right where you are, I can assure you that it will not suddenly appear—voila!—at your next place of employment.

I will never forget the first time I saw the motto in front of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church years ago: Excellence in all things and all things to God’s glory. That was the driving force behind everything we did at Coral Ridge under the leadership of Dr. D. James Kennedy. This goal made all boats in the harbor rise, simply because the driving force behind everything we did was to bring honor and glory to God.

Take a quick look back to the story about the three bricklayers; which one do you most identify with? Is what you are doing simply “work” . . . or is it God’s work? Are you marking time . . . or are you marked by excellence? Remember: it is always up to you!

This is the Gospel. This is grace for your race. NEVER FORGET THAT . . . AMEN!

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