THE SPIRIT OF EXCELLENCE – PART I PASTOR AUSTIN ESEKE
Then this Daniel was preferred above the presidents and princes, because an excellent spirit was in him; and the king thought to set him over the whole realm. Daniel 6:3 KJV
Daniel and his friends had ten times more wisdom and understanding than the others. Daniel interpreted dreams and had an excellent spirit. The king promoted him ruler over the whole province of Babylon. Daniel raised up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. They would not bow to the golden image and were thrown into the fiery furnace. Daniel would not stop praying to the one true God and was thrown into the lion’s den. Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were delivered from the fire in the furnace. Daniel was delivered from the lions. God sent His angel and shut the lions’ mouths.
A spirit of excellence, one anchored to the things of God, is the key that will bring you through trials and tribulations. It will enable you to succeed, have favor, and fulfill all that God has ordained for you to accomplish in your lifetime. How would you like to have an excellent spirit?
Definitions of Excellence: the quality of being outstanding or extremely good, distinction, quality, superiority, brilliance, greatness, merit, caliber, eminence, and mastery.
Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you. John 15:16 KJV
Father, we ask You, in the name of Jesus, to help us develop an excellent spirit, one that is anchored to the Word of God.
Characteristics of an Excellent Spirit: great character, integrity, honesty, compassion, humble, teachable, ever learning, great work habits, dependable, meekness, consistent, confident, determination, diligence, adaptability, persistent, goal-oriented, enthusiastic, forgiving, self-disciplined, reliable, great stewardship, generous, grateful, bold, guard your heart, positive attitude, faithful, hopeful, surrendered to God, and Christ-like.
God blesses excellence! Where you find excellence, you will find God’s favor.
Whatever may be your task, work at it heartily (from the soul), as [something done] for the Lord and not for men. Colossians 3:23
See Proverbs 22:29 and Ecclesiastes 9:10
Enemies of Excellence: mediocre, average, procrastinator, low self-esteem, lazy, compromise, low motivation, poor communicator, prideful, complacent, arrogant, boastful, conceited, callous, inconsistent, mentality of grass is always greener on the other side, excuse-driven, unreliable, unforgiving, fearful, negative, doubtful, slothful, easily offended, faithless, rebellious towards God’s Word, ignoring the Holy Spirit, and spirit of religion and tradition.
What Is Mediocre? Average, ordinary, of only moderate quality, not very good, middling, middle-of-the-road, uninspired, undistinguished, indifferent, unexceptional, unexciting, unremarkable, and run-of-the-mill.
Mediocre or average is being the best of the worst and the worst of the best. Are you happy with being mediocre? Do you believe that this is God’s best for you? Don’t conform to average or mediocre just to fit in. God’s best never intended for you to be just average or ordinary.
For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
Workplace: Show up ten minutes early. Don’t pack up to leave until you’re off the clock. Don’t surf the Internet and play games. Don’t take excessive breaks or long lunches. Do not steal office supplies. Do above what is expected. Work hard. Be a team player. Study to improve your skill set at your job. Keep your work area clean. Have a great attitude. Look people in the eye. Be polite. Treat others as you would like to be treated.
Appearance: Whether you wear dress clothes or casual, make sure that your apparel is clean and neat. Take care of yourself. Have proper personal grooming habits, good hygiene, and a healthy diet. First impressions are lasting impressions. You are the temple of the living God.
Vehicle & Home: Take care of your car even if it’s old. Detail it inside and out. Follow through with the regular maintenance of it. Keep your home clean. Make your bed. Wash your dishes. Take out the trash. Keep the yard mowed and maintained. Fix broken items immediately. If you’re faithful in the little things, God will make you ruler over much.
Stewardship of Borrowed Items: If you borrow something, return it in better condition. If you borrow a car, return it with more fuel. Never use offering envelopes to take notes on. Pay your bills and pledges. Excellence = Stewardship.
And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; 10 That ye may approve things that are excellent; that ye may be sincere and without offence till the day of Christ. Philippians 1:9-10 KJV
The Bible tells us that Joseph did not get offended at his brothers when they mocked his dreams and threw him in a pit. Joseph did not get offended when he was wrongly accused and put into prison. Joseph had a spirit of excellence and would not yield to a spirit of offense. Joseph was promoted to the palace and was overseer of all of Egypt. The entire world, including his family, came to him to receive food during a global famine.
When you’re pressed and in a hard place, whatever is in your heart will come out. Having a spirit of excellence in the pit and in the prison took Joseph to the palace. This process took 13 years. Excellence is a journey; it’s not a one-time event.
Having a spirit of excellence does not make you proud or better than anyone else; it makes you humble and thankful. It’s a “heart thing” – not a hard thing!
Pray and study the Word. Talk to Him and praise Him! Don’t forsake the assembly of the brethren; come to church. If you hunger and thirst after righteousness, you shall be filled. There are nine fruit of the Spirit. A spirit of excellence is composed of the nine fruit of the Spirit.
But earnestly desire and zealously cultivate the greatest and best gifts and graces (the higher gifts and the choicest graces). And yet I will show you a still more excellent way [one that is better by far and the highest of them all—love]. 1 Corinthians 12:31
A spirit of excellence is always love motivated; God is love.
Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:37-39 KJV
If you have Christ, you have it in you to have a spirit of excellence.