Thursday, June 4, 2009

Striving For Excellence

I've had three 12+ hour days this week leading up to summer camp and I'm wondering if it's worth it. Do we really need to make sure that...
  • all the cabin assignments are correct,
  • all the discussion clusters are evenly numbered,
  • we have the precise number of T-Shirts, 
  • our camp workbook has all the pages in order,
  • we have enough seatbelts per passenger,
  • every church has transportation and directions,
  • someone can pick up the speaker from the airport,
  • the worship team has all the right sound gear and instruments,
  • we have a defined schedule for every day at camp?
No, we don't need those things. We could do without T-Shirts, workbooks, cabin assignments, discussion groups, and even seatbelts. But it wouldn't be an excellent camp. Getting all of these things in order doesn't define the camp, but it does reveal the intentionality and purpose behind it. I'm not naturally a detail-oriented guy, but I've realized that great leadership requires excellence in the details. The more organization and structure, the more the volunteer staff can simply focus on building connections with students and pointing them to Jesus. When things aren't structured--when we're just kinda winging it--the little details can quickly become distractions.

I've had to check my own heart a few times in this process. Am I being a perfectionist, working this hard so that I look good to the other church leaders? Or am I striving for excellence so that we can foster the best possible environment for students to encounter God? I pray that the former motivation would fall away and that the latter would drive everything I do. It's not about perfection; it's about offering God the best of ourselves and allowing Him to work through us.

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