Rather than giving specific instructions or keys to success, I want to invite you to reflect and prayerfully consider what it looks like for you to pursue excellence, whether in worship leadership or anything else. Maybe you’ve already figured this out, but I encourage you to lay that aside for a moment.
Holy Spirit, how are you leading? What are you speaking? Reveal your heart to me in this moment, in this place. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:17 ESV
Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain. 1 Corinthians 15:58
If you simply google the definition of “excellence”, here’s what comes up:
ex·cel·lence /ˈeks(ə)ləns/ noun: the quality of being outstanding or extremely good.
Synonyms to excellence: exceptional, proficient, marvelous, wonderful, and as definition lists, extremely good, and outstanding.
As I was reflecting and researching, the word “outstanding” was highlighted to me. In the verse above from 1 Corinthians, the word “abounding” can be translated as “excelling”… always excelling in the work of the Lord. So what does that mean, and what does it look like to excel in all we do, all we say, all we are called to by the Lord?
I thought more on word outstanding… to stand out. Looking at excellence from a simple perspective, to stand out, made sense to me in a way it hadn’t before. That’s what we’re called to as followers of Christ, isn’t it? To stand out… not to conform to the patterns of this world, but to stand out, to be excellent, for the sake of Christ and His Kingdom coming to this earth. Look at Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Let me switch gears for a second and differentiate between what might be considered temporal and eternal views of excellence. There are things we pursue on earth in excellence. Looking at worship leadership, pursuing excellence could mean taking lessons, classes, and other means of growing musically and creatively in various ways to better do music and arts in curating worship gatherings. From an eternal perspective, there’s basically another layer added onto that. We discern and determine, to a certain degree at least, what the Lord is calling us into, and therefore, we pursue growth in specific areas in order that we might “stand out” for the cause of Christ, that His Kingdom would come, His will would be done, on this earth, in this place, as it is in Heaven.
So, where you’re at today, and in the Spirit’s leading in your life, what does it look like for you to stand out, to pursue excellence, all to the glory of Christ Jesus our Lord? …Oh to be worshipers of Christ who STAND OUT!
Praise the Lord!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his mighty heavens!
Praise him for his mighty deeds;
praise him according to his excellent greatness!
Praise him with trumpet sound;
praise him with lute and harp!
Praise him with tambourine and dance;
praise him with strings and pipe!
Praise him with sounding cymbals;
praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
Let everything that has breath praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord!