Everything He did was perfect. He, Father God, and Holy Spirit have always enjoyed complete unity—they agreed on every aspect of creation, and He helped establish the order and function of the universe perfectly, down to a minuscule flower petal and amoeba. He was God’s perfect sacrifice for our sins, and, as Hebrews 5:9 (ESV) says, being made perfect, He became the source of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.
He, of course, is Jesus Christ. His assignment while on earth was an impossible one unless He was God. And He was. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of His nature, and He upholds the universe by the word of His power. After making purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, having become as much superior to angels as the name He has inherited is more excellent than theirs (Hebrews 1:3-4 ESV).
Many of us make impossible to-do lists—i.e., they are humanly impossible to accomplish in the time allotted for tasks. We sense defeat and failure when there are items on the list that are unfinished at the end of the day. According to Webster’s Dictionary, an overachiever is one who achieves success over and above the standard or expected level, especially at an early age. Even as a young boy of twelve years, Jesus amazed the religious leaders of the day with His knowledge and understanding as He listened to them and asked questions in the Temple. It was said of Him that all who heard Him were amazed at His understanding and His answers (Luke 2:47 NLT).
Whatever He did, Jesus did well. After healing a deaf and dumb man, scripture tells us the people were astonished beyond measure, saying, "He has done all things well. He makes both the deaf to hear and the mute to speak” (Mark 7:37 NKJV). He always did what pleased the Father, as evidenced in John 8:29, where Jesus was speaking of His relationship with the Father, “And the One who sent Me is with Me—He has not deserted Me. For I always do what pleases Him.”
No one would ever be able to achieve Christ’s to-do list except Someone with the exact imprint of God’s nature. Consider Jesus’ to-do list:
Leave Paradise to be born in the backroom of a stable, in a feeding trough (God, in a smelly barn, with livestock mooing and braying; no medical personnel to assist, no incubator)
Live like an ordinary boy, while being one-third of the Trinity and sinless (that meant boyhood minus any tom-foolery or shenanigans)
Be water baptized by John the Baptist (an abnormal baptism when God spoke from Heaven and a dove landed on Jesus, as recorded in Matthew 3:13-17)
Be filled with the Holy Spirit and receive God’s dunamis power to work miracles, signs, and wonders for three years.
Confront and heal demoniacs, paralytics, blind and deaf people, lepers, and all who were sick (that meant endless lines of afflicted people and endless hours of ministry)
Raise dead people (even after they were long dead)
Preach and teach the Word of God to thousands of people searching for the Truth (sometimes that included feeding thousands of them on the spur of the moment with no food supplies)
Disciple twelve ordinary men from varied backgrounds and occupations to become apostles (only the nature of God could yield the patience and skill to train and mature such a motley group)
Be ridiculed, persecuted, and beaten for bringing the message of salvation and healing to the world
Suffer a torturous death of crucifixion
Be buried then resurrected by the power of God
Return to Heaven and sit down at the right hand of God the Father
Be a high priest and intercessor for all generations of mankind
Rule and reign with Father God for eternity
Astounding list, right? I’ve known more than a few overachievers in my lifetime, but none have come close to achieving Christ’s to-do list. The Son of God completed His Father’s task list perfectly, and excellence defined everything He accomplished.
Christ is our example. 1 Peter 2:21 (ESV) says, for to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in His steps. Our example was the Ultimate Overachiever, but try as we might, we can never attain perfection and excellence to the degree that Jesus did until we are living in the glorified bodies He promises us. Beloved, we are God's children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when He appears, we shall be like Him because we shall see Him as He is (1 John 3:2 ESV).
The to-do list God puts before each of us is much simpler than the list required of Jesus. It is two-fold, and Jesus described it in Mark 12:30-31:
“You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.”
“Love your neighbor as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these."
That is a lifetime assignment, and it will never be fully completed until we are with the Lord in heaven. BUT many beautiful attributes and fruit of the Spirit will be developed as we work on our to-do list! Staying in a close, daily relationship with the Lord and allowing Him to guide us will bring detail to our to-do lists, and the Kingdom of God will spread throughout the world as we do our part.
The Father only needed one Ultimate Overachiever to complete His plan of redemption for the world. Still, He needs all of us to communicate the good news of the Ultimate Overachiever’s accomplishment. In doing that, we, in our imperfect, sinful state, can be redeemed to reflect the character and nature of the Ultimate Achiever.
Even in that, He softens the assignment with these words in Galatians 6:4-5, from the MESSAGE translation, make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don't be impressed with yourself. Don't compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.
© 2022, Chris Werre