As human beings, we are constantly striving for excellence. There’s always that one person who seems to be the epitome of excellence, and it seems that there is just no way of attaining it; knowing that there will always be someone with a better degree, MA, or pHD which, apparently, defines how capable we are nowadays. And we can’t help but ask ourselves: “Where does that leave me?”.
The funny thing is, approximately 80% of the time, those people themselves don’t think they’re worth all the fuss as they see others as better than even them and so the cycle continues to go on. But in a letter Paul wrote to Timothy, he tells us: ‘Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity… Do not neglect your gift!’.
When I was younger, I went through a time when I thought I was supernaturally gifted. You may think I’m talking about being supernatural via le Holy Spirit… but no. I went through an interesting period where I thought I was genuinely telepathic. Now, contradictory to what Paul wrote, people definitely should have, and did, look down on me because I was young and stupid. These are NOT the sorts of gifts God wants us to hone in on (in-case that wasn’t super obvious). Instead, He provides us with different talents and skills depending on our purpose - “We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us." (Romans 12: 6-8). And these gifts don't require us to strive for excellence. The gifts of prophecy, serving, teaching, encouragement, giving, leading or mercy-giving are formed through the Grace of God.
Throughout the New Testament, Jesus actually makes it clear that there are virtuous alternatives to being excellent; that there are different ways in which we can be virtuous in our calling and God given purpose. We all catch ourselves striving for excellence. It’s just in the nature of how we live and the people that surround us. But what if you stopped striving for excellence and actually just cultivated grace? Wouldn’t life just become that much more bearable and so much less competitive?
You are over-qualified for the life you live through GRACE! You are called for bigger things, and sometimes humbling yourself and remembering that you used to think telepathy was your purpose in life can show you how much more God has provided for you. Hindsight is always a massive game changer, and if you look back, I am sure you will see countless victories that were won using the grace of God vs. your perception of excellence.
It's time for a shift in perspective.