"I am excellent!" I usually reply.
My wonderful pastor has sprung that on me several times, yet I never know what to say. Nevertheless, it has gotten me thinking. What am I excellent at? and, What should I be excellent at?
Excellence: The state of possessing good qualities in an unusual or eminent degree; the state of excelling in anything. (Webster's 1828 Dictionary)
According to this definition I could safely say I am excellent in anything, or if so, very few things. But the question is not, "What am I excellent at?" Rather, the question is, "In what areas of my life should I be striving for excellence?"
"Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God." -Hebrews 12:1-2
This verse seems to imply that we are to strive for excellence in every area of our lives, at every point along the "race" that has been set before us. With Christ as our example may we strive for excellence in every aspect of our existence, and though we may not attain it here on earth we can still say that we ran with endurance. The next time my pastor asks me what I am excellent at I will have something to say.
"Nothing at present, but each day I reach higher, and strive for the excellence that Christ has set before me in His perfect example."