Monday - “An Excellent Life”

Bible Reading:  Colossians 3:23-24

Four times a year, I meet with a group of colleagues from all over North Alabama where we discuss a variety of issues, regulations, and products which affect our business. I enjoy these meetings because we share ideas and energize each other in a lot of different ways. A couple of years ago, our facilitator shared a book with us called "A Life of Excellence" by Richard E. Simmons, III.  Now please get those disturbing visuals out of your head of the flamboyant, loud fitness guru jumping around in spandex shirts and 1970's basketball shorts while "Sweatin' to the Oldies." This is a different Richard Simmons. To my knowledge, there is no relation or connection in any way. That having been said, I encourage you to pick up a copy of this book. It is a book you can read in an evening or two, unlike the 15 books of which I have read the first 100 pages because my vacations were too short to finish.

In this book, Simmons’ primary purpose is to help us to understand why there is a gap between the life we have aspired to and the life which we actually live, and how to dramatically shrink that gap. It is not a book about being wealthy or famous. It is a book about being the best that we can be individually. We will break down the book in five primary discussions: Regret, Choices, Good Intentions, Making Changes, and The Importance of Immediate Action.

Vince Lombardi once said, "The quality of one’s life is in direct proportion to his commitment to excellence." We all know ways to improve our life, and what is required to live a life of excellence, but often we lack the will to follow through on what we know to do.  God expects our best when it comes to following his teachings.

John Wooden, the excellent former basketball coach of UCLA, said that the most important instruction he received from his father was, "Don't worry about being better than somebody else, but never cease trying to be the best you can be. You have control over that, not the other."

I can't be the song leader that John Paul is, or the Preacher that Matt Heupel is, but I can be the best cook, encourager, teacher… fill in the blank, that I can be. That is all that God expects. "Whatsoever thy hand finds to do, do it with all your might" (Ecclesiastes 9:10). That is the beginning of living a Life of Excellence.


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