Day 15: Consistency – the key to Excellence #28DayChallenge

Today’s title speak for itself. In my 30+ years of existence, including several years of academic and professional excellence, I have come to learn that perhaps the single most important element in developing an attitude of excellence is consistency in doing the right things – showing up and committing to actions that produce results.

Excellence means going over and above what is expected. Excellence is doing the work you are expected and then adding a touch that reminds whoever sees the work of who did it. Excellence is a waiter serving with a smile. Excellence is a leader leaving an impeccable example; it is settling for nothing less than the best. Excellence begins with mastery, and then proactive efforts to improve on what we have mastered. But mastery only comes from consistency.

While what constitutes excellence differs from one field to another, the actions that produce it are the same. First, excellence requires knowing what is expected of you and taking the time to (learn to) do it properly. The next step is as an improvement-seeking behaviour. When you find that one person looking for simpler, faster and more efficient ways of achieving the same objectives, then you are dealing with an excellent attitude. Excellence is never stopping until you have exceeded your previous best.

Whether learning to meet expectations or looking to exceed them, a common behaviour required is consistency – in setting learning routines, practicing what you have learnt, continuously making corrections or implementing improvement opportunities. When you repeatedly do things until they become a part of you, getting it right and discovering ways to do it better becomes easier because of practice.

Excellence is only predicated on knowing the right things to do. If you do the wrong tasks well, it is of no use to anyone. So, get knowledge and get training. Being deliberate is also key to excellence. Continuous commitment to action in any field or personal endeavor (including character building) produces mastery. Lastly, there can be no excellence without continuous improvement.

Excellent people know how to look for improvements, seek feedback, refine them, and implement the resulting actions in order to keep getting better at what they do. And they know that they can only remain excellent if they are consistent at what they do. So, what are currently working at consistently?

Thanks for stopping by today, and I hope you’ll come by again real soon. Cheers!

Eyes on the Prize: Persevering to do God’s Will

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised. (Heb. 10:36, NIV)

Welcome to the third and final part of this series on fulfilling your purpose! If you have not read the first two posts in this series, you can read them here: The Big Picture & Follow the Leader. Fulfilling purpose is a journey, one that lasts a lifetime. And my prayer is that you, my dear reader, will not be cut short amid your days. Rather, you will live long enough to complete the work the Lord has committed to you and fulfill His purpose for your life. But if you must fulfill your purpose, then you must learn to persevere – that is, to patiently endure every trial or challenge and ensure you do what God desires of you.

Continue reading “Eyes on the Prize: Persevering to do God’s Will”

Compelled by the Spirit

“And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. Acts 20:22 (NIV)

Have you ever gone to a place solely on account of God’s will? Or maybe taken a decision only because you were persuaded it was what God wanted? An action without benefit or profit for you, one that you have to take at great risk to your life or possessions – would you ever take that kind of action? This is what we hear Paul say in the verse above. Let’s look a little closer…

Paul was bidding the elders of the Ephesian church farewell. Convinced he would never see them again, he gave them parting words, sharing his commitment to preaching the gospel as he went from place to place. Although he lived with a lot of uncertainties, Paul knew one thing was sure – prison and hardships awaited him as he spread the gospel. Yet he was was unwavering. He was set for the defence of the gospel, willing to complete his God-given task at any cost.

Just like his master Jesus, Paul was headed to Jerusalem, knowing the danger that awaited him there, but convinced that he was being led there by God in fulfillment of purpose. He was ready to embrace pain, hardship or even death, that could become his fate as he headed to Jerusalem. He no longer counted his life dear to himself neither did he strive to preserve it – he only lived to obey the Lord’s command and follow his bidding. Like Jesus, Paul was sold out to God – a willing slave.

The lesson is clear; the application is challenging; the demand, unwavering. God wants our all – a total commitment to obeying his commands and doing his will regardless of the cost to us. Although He works with us at every stage to accomplish his purpose, God always desires for us to become more yielded by the day, letting go of everything until like Paul, we too can say, with full devotion and complete sincerity: “I consider my life worth nothing to me”.

Then Paul answered, “Why are you weeping and breaking my heart? I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” Acts 21:13 (NIV)

Further Reading: Acts 20:17-24, 21:10-14

A Prayer for You

Hello, dear friends! I wish you a happy new month of September. I’m grateful to God for the gift of life and the blessing of family and friends. I am especially grateful for God’s gracious gift of eternal life, freely given to those who believe in Jesus Christ our Lord. May His name be praised forever. As though in a flash, eight months of the year 2020 have flown by, and we are now set upon the last few months of this extraordinary year that has brought the most unprecedented changes to our lives.

I want to encourage you to set out this new month with determination and devotion to pursue whatever your heart is set on. Do not dither, waver or be idle, but act with commitment and give your best. As they say, procrastination is a thief of time, and time waits for no man. Great things are achieved when we commit to action, one day at a time. COVID-19 has been a great disruption, but our lives go on, and many are making progress. Whatever your hand find to do, be sure to do it wholeheartedly.

This is my prayer for you – that your hand will be strong to perform the tasks God has called you to, that your vision will be clear in times of uncertainty, that your perception will be accurate in the presence of deception, and that your heart will fully embrace all that you are called to do. I pray that God’s Holy Spirit will order your steps into His perfect will, and that you will look back on this month with praise to God. All of this I ask in Jesus’ precious name. Amen. Have a blessed month ahead of you!

Uninspired

Have you ever waited for inspiration to come? Have you struggled to catch a whiff of fresh air before getting started on a project? Have you ever felt blank in your greatest moments of need, when it seemed everything depended on you getting an ingenious idea? Well, I suppose you have, and that you have sometimes been disappointed, as I have been. I have found out that no great venture is sustained on the ground of inspired ideas. Inspiration may get you started, but diligence and commitment to a cause keeps you in the long haul.

Continue reading “Uninspired”