7 Reasons God Doesn't Do Average

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To accomplish our goals for 2015. . .an average effort is not enough.  An average commitment is not enough.  Average desire is not enough.

A.W. Tozier, the noted theologian, wrote:

“Refuse to be average. Let your heart soar as high as it will.”

Being average is a settled for. . .kind of life.

The average person settles for whatever comes their way. . .by resigning themselves to exist as they are…by refusing to make the effort to move beyond and out of their comfort zone. . .into the kind of life God desires for them.

It’s interesting and important to note that the word average is not in the King James Version, New King James, New International, New American Standard, Amplified or New Living Translation of the Bible.

I believe average isn’t in any of those translations because God created, empowered and destined each of us to rise above average. . .to move into excellence in all that our hands find to do.

In fact, as I went on a scripture search of why we shouldn’t be average. . .I found seven amazing passages of scripture and the last one. . .demonstrates why being average will make you a spitball Christian.  But more about that later.

Now let’s talk about seven reasons God doesn’t do average.

First, from average to excellence by changing the way you think.

Romans 12:2 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].”

Changed from what we were. . .average. . .just getting by. . .destined for hell. . .but now living a life where the future is bright and your eternal destination. . .guaranteed.

The verse says:  “. . . be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude].”

Does that sound like God wants you to live an average life?  I don’t think so.

“The way we were” may have been a great song but it’s not how God wants us to live our lives.

If “. . .God transforms us into a new person by changing the way we think” that doesn’t sound like an average life to me.

In fact, I consider Romans 12:2 a prescription to move beyond average.

If God transforms your life by changing the way you think. . .you’re being put on a path to excellence.

In order words, God wants us to think like He thinks.

Philippians 2:5 in the Contemporary English Version says:

“And think the same way that Christ Jesus thought.”

Do we honestly think that Jesus was an average thinker?  Hardly.

Thinking like Jesus thinks. . .means we will live a life that’s anything but average.

How do we accomplish this goal?

Big surprise.  Seven words.  READ YOUR BIBLE. . .DO WHAT IT SAYS.

Second, your assignment is anything but average.

Pastor Joel Osteen said:

“You were not created to just get by with an average, unrewarding, or unfulfilling life. God created you to leave your mark on this generation.”

1 Peter 2:9 in the Message Bible says:

But you are the ones chosen by God, chosen for the high calling of priestly work, chosen to be a holy people, God’s instruments to do his work and speak out for him, to tell others of the night-and-day difference he made for you—from nothing to something, from rejected to accepted.”

You have been chosen as God’s instruments. . .His hands and mouth on planet earth.

He chose you before you were born.

Jeremiah 1:5 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew [and] approved of you [as My chosen instrument], and before you were born I separated and set you apart, consecrating you; [and] I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

God not only chose you before you were born. . .but He equipped you.

John 15:16 in the Amplified Bible says:

You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you and I have appointed you [I have planted you], that you might go and bear fruit and keep on bearing, and that your fruit may be lasting [that it may remain, abide], so that whatever you ask the Father in My Name [as presenting all that I Am], He may give it to you.”

God chose you for a specific purpose. . .and it wasn’t to sit on your couch watching Christian television while time and life pass you by.

Each of us were appointed by God to go and bear fruit. . .and to keep on being productive.

God didn’t choose you to work 20, 30 or 40 years. . .then retire where you fall into a sedentary existence.  There’s a reason God didn’t put retirement in the Bible.  He wants us occupying until He comes. (Luke 19:13)

We’re to be fruit producers. . .and that, Child of God, makes you anything but average.

Third, God wants us to take the path He planned.

There can never be any doubt that God has plans for you. . .and, even a causal reading of the Word. . .will reveal those plans DON’T include you being average or just getting by. . .coasting along waiting for a ride in the rapture.

Jeremiah 29:11 in the New International Version says:

“For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” 

God’s plans don’t include us being average or couch potatoes.  He wants us productive and making a difference and meeting needs.

Titus 3:14 in the New Living Translation says:

“Our people must learn to do good by meeting the urgent needs of others; then they will not be unproductive.”

Get off the couch (literally or figuratively) and be about Kingdom business.

There are times when people fall into the couch because they’re afraid they’ll fail or wonder what will happen if they move outside their comfort zone and away from just being average.

Isaiah 43:1-2 in the Message Bible says:

“. . .Don't be afraid, I've redeemed you. I've called your name. You're mine.  When you're in over your head, I'll be there with you.  When you're in rough waters, you will not go down.  When you're between a rock and a hard place, it won't be a dead end—Because I am God, your personal God.”

God’s got your back. . .because after all, He’s your personal God.

God definitely has plans for each of us. . .beyond being average.

Ephesians 2:10 in the Amplified Bible says:

“For we are God’s [own] handiwork (His workmanship), recreated in Christ Jesus, [born anew] that we may do those good works which God predestined (planned beforehand) for us [taking paths which He prepared ahead of time], that we should walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us to live].”

You’re going to love the New Living Translation of Ephesians 2:10 which says:

“For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.”

There’s no such thing as an average masterpiece.

Fourth, we must make a clean break from the mediocrity of the past.

2 Corinthians 7:1 in the Message Bible says:

“With promises like this to pull us on, dear friends, let’s make a clean break with everything that defiles or distracts us, both within and without. Let’s make our entire lives fit and holy temples for the worship of God.”

Here’s the question for each of us to ponder.

Are we doing the best we can with what we’ve got where we are?

Now that we’ve mentally answered that question. . .let’s ask ourselves this question.

Would God think we’re doing the best we can where we are with what we’ve got?

Another question.

Are there things in our lives from which we need to make a clean break because they’re holding us back in an average existence?

The Word says we can make a clean break from everything that has seemingly so easily beset us.

Hebrews 12:1 in The Living Bible says:

“Since we have such a huge crowd of men of faith watching us from the grandstands, let us strip off anything that slows us down or holds us back, and especially those sins that wrap themselves so tightly around our feet and trip us up; and let us run with patience the particular race that God has set before us.”

We need help to strip off the things that cause us to resign ourselves to being average.

2 Corinthians 5:17 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Therefore if any person is [ingrafted] in Christ (the Messiah) he is a new creation (a new creature altogether); the old [previous moral and spiritual condition] has passed away. Behold, the fresh and new has come!”

It’s time to make a fresh move. . .into the realm of faith. . .where we believe, confess and do what the Word of God says we can do. . .allowing us to move from average to excellence.

Fifth, learners move beyond being average.

We alluded to it earlier in this teaching. . .the question worth posing again at this point is. . .what will allow us to move from being average to being called a good and faithful servant?

Colossians 3:10 in The Living Bible says:

You are living a brand new kind of life that is continually learning more and more of what is right, and trying constantly to be more and more like Christ who created this new life within you.”

Continually learning. . .focused on the word. . .not just a word. . .but His Word.

I feel impressed to read Colossians 3:10 in The Living Bible one more time.  The verse  says:

You are living a brand new kind of life that is continually learning more and more of what is right, and trying constantly to be more and more like Christ who created this new life within you.”

We can have a life beyond average. . .a new life. . .when  we learn more and more of what is right.  Always striving to be more like Christ who created this new life within us.

When I think about being a learner. . .I’m reminded of the story of Jigoro Kano who was the founder of the martial art of Judo.  By all accounts he was a remarkable man … an inspiration and motivation to his students.  He had an insatiable desire to learn.

Kano took the almost defunct art of Jujitsu and incorporated contemporary sports principles thus creating the martial art form of Judo.  It became the first martial arts sport ever allowed in the Olympics.

Kano also had a passion to improve the quality of education for Japanese children and is regarded by many as the father of modern education in his home country.  He was highly revered in Japan as well as by literally millions around the world.

When it became apparent that Kano was going to die, he called his students together to give them his final wishes.

He said, “When you bury me, do not bury me in a black belt.  Be sure to bury me in a white belt.”

In martial arts, a white belt indicates that you’re a beginner … an apprentice with much too learn.  It has been written that Kano’s life exemplified that kind of humility.

As I read his story, it stirred me that every one of us who is serious about becoming more like Christ should be wearing a white belt.  We should demonstrate a willingness, a hunger for knowledge to learn more. . .which will move us from an average life to one of excellence.

Sixth, leave average behind as you see and seize new opportunities.

Colossians 4:5 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Behave yourselves wisely [living prudently and with discretion] in your relations with those of the outside world (the non-Christians), making the very most of the time and seizing (buying up) the opportunity.”

Don’t settle for hanging around with people who think being average is the best there is.

Be around people who are willing serve the Lord with gladness. . .read a self-improvement book. . .take a course to improve their skillset or do anything which would set them apart from all the rest.

Dr. Robert Schuller said:

“The hardest struggle of all is to be something different from what the average man is.”

Ask yourself. . .are your current friends. . .your inner circle. . .the kind who will encourage you or discourage you from seizing a new opportunity?

Are you friends the kind who see difficulties in every opportunity or do they see opportunities in every difficulty?

Are your current friends. . .the kind who will encourage or discourage you from trying to better yourself through classes online or through your local community college?

Regardless of your age. . .and how many years you may think you will live. . .time is short.

As the scripture says. . .we must be buying up (taking advantage of) every opportunity that comes our way.

Ephesians 5:14 in the Message Bible says:

“Wake up from your sleep, Climb out of your coffins; Christ will show you the light!  So watch your step. Use your head. Make the most of every chance you get. These are desperate times!”

I think it’s pretty obvious from this scripture that God does not want us living an average existence. . .coasting through life just waiting for the rapture, our express elevator to heaven.

As born-again believers. . .we’re to occupy until He comes. . .we’re to increase our talents and multiply our efforts. . .be effective stewards of all that He has entrusted to us. . .we’re to help spread the gospel. . .disciple the saints and heal the sick.

We’re to be anything but average.

Seventh, when you’re average God wants nothing to do with you.

Now this is where being average. . .get’s spiritually serious.

Revelation 3:16 in the New Living Translation says:

But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth!”

In God’s letter to the Laodicean church He had nothing good to say about them.  He simply pointed out as the scripture suggests that if we’re not hot or cold. . .we’re just average.  They weren’t good or bad. . .just average.

When a person is average they’re as close to the bottom as they are to the top.

In life. . .it’s not sinful to be average in your appearance. . .your income. . .the kind of home you live in. . .your athletic endeavors. . .your job or anything else.

Sadly, most Americans, including many believers, seek the tangible trappings of success but ignore what it means to be spiritually successful.

Luke 12:15-16 in the King James Version says:

“And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth.”

By the way, this scripture is not a condemnation of wealth or riches but it is of covetousness.

Here’s the point.  If what we have or what somebody else has is more important to us than being and doing all God has for us. . .then it’s sin.

If we’re more attentive to our time at gyms, tanning parlors, manicure and pedicure shops, weight-loss centers, and hair replacement facilities. . .than we are about expanding the kingdom of God. . .being involved in our local churches. . .then it’s sin.

Being lukewarm. . .average is serious business. 

Have you ever eaten something that didn’t set well with you. . .where you had to spew it out of your mouth?  You got rid of the bad food because it wasn’t good for you.

The Laodiceans were about to be spewed out of God’s mouth because of their lukewarm attitude toward things that were important to Him.

I heard someone say once that we should never be more content with a satisfied life than we are with a crucified life.

Being lukewarm, mediocre or average is not pleasing to God.

Simply said, if God were going to spew them out of His mouth. . .He wanted nothing to do with them.

It’s one thing to know the truth. . .it’s another to do something about it.

It’s amazing how many people do not want to be average but yet they never do anything to rise above what they don’t want to be.

C.S. Lewis, the noted theologian and amazing author once said:

“If you are continually stirred and fail to act, the time will come when you will be unable to act.”

We need to make a quality commitment this week. . .to rise above average. . .to be the best we can possibly be. . .in everything our hands find to do.