Prospecting for Excellence
When asked to contribute to the above topic, what went through my mind was to simply do these three things in plain language:
1. To try to define excellence
2. To point out impediments to excellence
3. To show roadmaps to excellence
Excellence is defined by a dictionary as the state or quality of being superior, eminently good, or first class, being in a class of distinction.
Going with these definitions, the person prospecting for excellence cannot be satisfied with the minimum, the mediocre or average life as it is not an option. He gives all it takes to attain excellence.
A person prospecting for excellence takes the advice of the preacher in Ecc 9:10, whatever your hands find to do, do with all your might, power, energy now for there is no other time but now. Excellence is when you have done all that is needed to be done an do it right.
Excellence, according to John Maxwell, a great author and world acclaimed authority on leadership is paying attention to every detail. This is very important as God demanded that excellence in the construction of Noah’s ark. He was to pay attention to details. Also, in the book of Genesis, Moses was told to pay attention to details concerning the making only when attention was paid to the minutest detail that God conferred the award of excellence on His people by His acceptance. Are you prospecting for excellence? Pay attention to every detail needed.
When prospecting for excellence, you must be attentive in class, do all assignments and submit on time and give yourself time to study. In all areas of life, you need to study. The bible says STUDY to show yourself APPROVED, CERTIFIED as a workman who needs not to be ashamed. He studied for the exams – to receive the certificate; He did not get the certificate through fraudulent means. When called to show himself approved he is ready, he is ready to defend this certificate. Excellence justifies what he claims to have had
To those pursuing academic excellence, read; to those who are prospecting for excellence in their spiritual lives, read; to those reaching for excellence in life, read. Reading to be informed must not be over-emphasized. All great men are readers. Moses, Joshua, the priests and prophets were great readers. No man of God ever or will ever make it in life except he reads. You have it in the Bible that Daniel had the spirit of excellence. Some would want to believe God opened up his head and put the spirit of excellence there but he gave us the clue on how he was able to operate in that spirit. He read and aquired information.
Read when others are wasting valuable time on things that don’t add value to their lives. Read about positive things. Use your time wisely! As Rev. Fagbemi says your time is your life. While striving for excellence, make judicious use of your time. Time is vital.
IMPEDIMENTS TO EXCELLENCE
1. Being satisfied with what you have achieved, where you are and who you are. If you belong to this group of people, you will never attain excellence. You must always strive to do better, believing that there is no room for improvement. A student may be happy with 8 credits, another satisfied with 6 credits and 2 Bs, another, unhappy with all Bs, another unhappy because he got no stars in his As. From these student’s reaction to their result, we can understand what excellence means to different people. Some Christians are satisfied with saying morning prayers alone while some can’t be satisified until they tell someone about Christ every single day.
2. Laziness. Laziness is not the inability to do something, but not using the ability to do it. The bible says to the lazy to go to the ant and learn from his ways. Laziness is severely condemmed in the scripture. The lazy one is barred from eating, let alone excelling.
3. Procrastination. Procrastination is said to be the thief of time. Postponing what could be done today till tomorrow. Observing the wind and waiting for a more opportune time. Whatever needs to be done, do it now.
ROADMAPS TO EXCELLENCE
1. Realize that excellence is attainable: do not accept the thought that excellence is the preserve of a selected few. See yourself as someone programmed for excellence. Caleb and Joshua saw themselves as able. They did not have a low self esteem. They had tha I-CAN mentality and they made it.
2. Read about those who have attained excellence. Also have mentors who have excelled in the field in which you are prospecting for excellence. Ask them questions. Asking questions is not a way of showing ignorance but a way of showing how desperate you are to excel.
3. Do more than is required, give more time to study. Diligence demands that you spend time more than before, in your quest for excellence.
4. Take a bold step. The higher the prize, the greater the risk. Do not be afraid of failure. Every failure is a lesson learnt about how not to go about a project. By trying and not succeeding at first, you learn a way that could lead to failure and next time you try again, you will be armed to avoid such.
5. Sever close relationship with those who are not striving for excellence, those who are satisfied with a life f mediocrity. You are not going to the same destination and different roads in this case do not lead to the same destiny.
6. The last and most important of the roadmaps is to have a relationship with the SPIRIT OF EXCELLENCE( Isaiah 11) If you have a good relationship with this spirit, He directs your way to excellence. It may take strenuous effort to attain this if you are depending on your knowledge, strength and wisdom. Though not impossible, but when you yield to your life and aspirations to the SPIRIT OF EXCELLENCE, He empowers your spirit to excel. All those who excelled in the bible, did so by the power of the spirit. You may say I have seen those who excelled without having a relationship with God. Yes, they excelled by applying the principle which generally works for them. But that is the principle of the world. It takes man up with strings attached to finally bring him down.
How Can I have relationship with the spirit of excellence?
Have yourself born again. Jesus said except a man is born again, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is the Kingdom of excellence. Accept your need for a saviour. Accept what he did on the cross – he died and resurrected on the third day, to remove the impediments to excellence. Accept himm as your Lord and Saviour.
Welcome to the household of God where failure is not an option but excellence a way of life. Now you have the ability to do all that are listed above. The Spirit of God works in you both to will and to do.
Be determined to excel, give it all it takes, and excel in Jesus’ name.
(Described by SMEDAN as an entrepreneur per excellence)