The Bible says, ‘Do you see any truly competent workers? They will serve kings rather than working for ordinary people’ (Proverbs 22:29 NLT). This proved true for Daniel. Even though he lived in captivity, he refused to settle for mediocrity. This brought him to the attention of the king of Babylon, who said, ‘I have heard of you, that the Spirit of God is in you, and that light and understanding and excellent wisdom are found in you.’ Eventually, he was promoted to the role of a supervisor over the governors in Babylon, where he ‘showed that he could do the work better than the other supervisors and governors, so the king planned to put Daniel in charge of the whole kingdom’ (Daniel 6:3 NCV). Ultimately, Daniel knew he served God, not man, and that meant he would try his best in everything he did. Although Colossians hadn’t been written at that time, Daniel really demonstrates this verse in action: ‘Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters’ (3:23 NIV). Aristotle said, ‘We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.’ And when we constantly strive for excellence, we’ll often find that, little by little, our skills will grow and sharpen. Striving for excellence doesn’t necessarily mean we have to be the best at something, it just means that we try to do our best. When we think of excellence in that way, it can take a lot of the pressure off because, even if we don’t always get rewards or praise from others, it’s rewarding to know that we’ve done our best and that God is pleased with our efforts. And when we’ve done our best, we can trust God to do the rest.
Have a check on your attitude to things like your work or studies, your relationships with others, tasks you do around the house or at church, etc. Do you always try your best, or do you sometimes settle for ‘okay’? Have a chat with God about striving for excellence with His help.
The UCB Word For You