Life At Its Best: Excuses, excellence don't go together
I love reading biographies. It seems every person has a different story to tell and different lessons to teach. But though each person's success journey is unique, one detail is common to every one: Somewhere along the way, a challenge had to be overcome. A barrier had to be broken. A choice had to be a made to switch the focus from limitation to potential.
Nick Vujicic is one who did this well. Nick was born with tetra-amelia syndrome, a syndrome that caused him to be born without any limbs. As a kid, he'd often get bullied. At age 10, he unsuccessfully attempted to end his life.
Once his parents found out, they instantly took action. They began teaching him God's word and helped him to gain a deeper understanding of who God is. Nick began seeing God differently, and as a result, he began seeing himself differently. He no longer viewed his imperfections as a weakness but as an avenue for God to work.
Nick opened himself up to be used by God, and God has been using him in incredible ways ever since. Today, at the age of 30, Nick has spoken to more than five billion people in 44 different nations and has led thousands of people to Christ through his testimony. And to think that this was once a little boy who nearly took his life.
What changed? It wasn't his circumstances. He still faced the challenges of living without limbs. He still dealt with the ugly looks and comments. It was his vision that changed. He chose to see his life not according to his limitations, but according to God's unlimited power.
God has called us all to do the same. He has a wonderfully unique plan for each of us. There are specific dreams we're created to accomplish and certain people we're called to reach. But like Nick, we must decide to never allow our imperfections to keep us from pursuing God's best.
2 Corinthians 12:9 says, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my strength is made perfect in weakness." God's not limited by our imperfections. He wants to work through them.
After we change our vision, we must also change our actions. It's been said that life is 20 percent what happens to us and 80 percent how we respond to it.
We all face challenges and setbacks, and it's tempting to use them as excuses not to pursue God's best. But as my Dad told me often growing up, "Excuses and excellence don't go together."
We won't reach God's best by excusing wrong actions. Instead, we must decide that, in every situation, we're going to make decisions that honor God. When we do, we'll begin to reach our potential.
What does God want to accomplish through you? I encourage you not to focus on your weaknesses but on His strength. Then, make good choices that lead you towards his best. If you do, you'll be amazed at what God can do through you.
Jim Graff is the Senior Pastor of Faith Family Church in Victoria. faithfamilyvictoria.com.