In a few weeks the Dallas Cowboys will begin training camp in preparation for the 2012 NFL season. Every year there is talk about making it to the Super Bowl only to discover for one reason or another they fail in their attempt. I’m not an official sports analyst but if I were I would describe the past sixteen years this way: They have a tendency to play at the level of their opponents. Because of that they find themselves coming up short on the score board in games that make a critical difference in their season. If this doesn’t change I would say that their mediocrity will catch up them and they won't be serious contenders for the Super Bowl this year. That’s my two cents ;(

Mediocrity is a curse convincing us that a partial effort — 80 % if necessary, 50% when we can get away with it — is always good enough. Mediocrity does what it can to avoid a bad showing, but rarely concerns itself with an excellent showing.

This is a great danger if it is allowed to creep into the church. If worship leaders take this approach to their task having the idea of "This is good enough for 85 people; we'll put forth more effort when we have a bigger crowd" God would not get the glory. The same is true for congregations who fill up the back rows first and engage themselves half-heartedly in a worship service. God doesn’t get the glory here either. It can also happen in a church’s approach to ministry, from the way it prints Sunday bulletins to the way it trains volunteers and to the extent of its efforts to reach the lost. Many churches are held back only by their commitment to mediocrity.

The words of Solomon ring out loudly here: "Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might." (Ecclesiastes 9:10)

Taking Solomon’s words to heart we should pursue excellence in everything: in the way we strive for holiness, in the way we reach out to others, in the way we live for Jesus. 

Every now and then Christ-followers need to take a mediocrity check: Is there an area of responsibility that I’m approaching only half-heartedly? Is there something I could be doing better? Am I giving my all?

Howard Hendricks said, "I have never met a Christian who sat down and planned to live a mediocre life. But if you keep going in the direction in which you are moving, you may land there."

Let's do our best to move in the direction of excellence, doing it with all our might.


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