Standards of excellence

Today I hopped in the car to travel between buildings for a meeting and caught all of two minutes of Pastor Greg Laurie’s talk about Daniel in the lions’ den. Daniel is a really interesting guy, isn’t he? He’s a Jewish exile, but he’s got a killer job, working as a right-hand man for Darius, the King of Babylon. Darius, and for that matter the other high officials that plotted to kill Daniel, found him faultless in his behavior and outstanding in his service to the king. Now this is a guy who cared about integrity and pursued excellence.

In the part of Greg Laurie’s talk that I heard, he was exhorting Christians to raise our personal performance standards. On some level, many of us assume that because we’re Christians that others will want to work with us (or have us work for them). We assume that letting others know we’re Christians will let them know that we value integrity and carry a strong worth ethic. Christian business owners put Jesus fish on their logos and many of us take steps to brand ourselves as workplace believers. These aren’t necessarily bad things, but as Laurie pointed out, we may have the process backwards. If we are Christ-followers, we should do like Daniel did – create a standard of performance and professionalism that is unquestionable. Then, once our reputation is cemented, and people later realize that we’re people of faith, our reputations in the workplace will assist us in representing (“re-presenting”) Christ to an unbelieving world.

To hear the rest of the sermon, go here and choose “Daniel in the Lion’s Den – 7/23/08”

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