I began my talk at Liberty U. last Thursday with a word of encouragement to these young students to pursue excellence in all they do and dream big while they are still able to do so. I am very concerned about what I see as a war on excellence everywhere in our culture, whether in education, business, art, or music. Mediocrity is preferred because it is easy. We have fast food, poor diets, screen addiction, easy transportation, shamefully horrible church music, etc. More times than I would to like to admit, I have seen students get stuck in jobs they didn't like or didn't fit them. The solution is to "know thyself," get your own house in order, write down your God-given goals, and strive for meaning and excellence. Don't overthink, but don't hesitate either. Believe passionately in what you are doing, and never simply ape what others are saying. Happiness is not the goal. It's merely a by-product. Let everything not important fall out of your life. Pursue the highest good you can conceive of. Never say, "I could never get my doctorate at Oxford." If that's your goal, shoot for the stars. If God closes that door he will open another one. Never settle for anything less than the best.
May the world be a brighter place because of you.