Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Meant to Soar

Today, I came across a book entitled Living Above The Level Of Mediocrity : A Commitment To Excellence, by Charles R. “Chuck” Swindoll. It belonged to my dad, and it did not look much like a brand new book to me. The pages were yellowing already. Haha. But anyway, I bothered to read it because my mum said it was a worthwhile book.

Before I started on this post, I checked the dictionary for the word: MEDIOCRITY. It is defined as: A quality that is acceptable, but not very good – either average or ordinary.

Living Above The Level Of Mediocrity talks about living life to the fullest by striving for excellence and seeing above and beyond the majority. Many times, we all take our cue from the majority and just “drift along with the flow”. We find that few people have the courage to be different and the guts to break away from what everyone else is doing.

Many of us are just contented with staying average and being ordinary. We do the same old things and never change or take the risk to try something new. But the truth is, if we just stay contented where we are, and not strive to aim higher, we’ll never arrive at that level of excellence God intended us to achieve. God destined us to soar high like the eagles in the sky. But many people prefer the boring lifestyle, working for the sake of working, and doing just enough to get by.

In life, there are probably two kinds of people. The ones who aim high and soar like the eagle, and the ones who aim low like chickens in the pen. You may be born an eagle, but if you prefer living among chickens, you’ll never learn how to fly because all chickens are contended just picking at the ground for grubby worms and all that sort. You notice that not all birds use their wings.

As I read the book, I was reminded of a primary school classmate. I remember an occasion when we were taking a test in the subject of art. I was well prepared to draw and color because my mum helped me plan what to draw at home. But beside me, I noticed that my classmate wasn’t doing her drawing very nicely. I asked her how come she wasn’t prepared, and she brusquely replied, “I don’t care lah. I didn’t even prepare. My mother said that as long as I try my best, it doesn’t matter how bad my marks are.”

For a moment, I was stunned at her reply. In my mind, I remember that my parents had always encouraged me to do my best, and not just to “try my best”. Yes, in a way, my friend was right. Ultimately, the marks doesn’t matter, but still, in whatever we do we should still strive for excellence and not just settle for mediocrity. It is when we strive to do our best, that we glorify God.

On the first page of the book, my dad had written in red ink:

Hope for the best,

Anticipate the worst,

Aim for the highest!

Remember my friend, we were meant to soar. So don’t just “hope for the best”, but also be prepared for the worst, and in all things, aim for the highest! =)

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