"We Just Need to Execute Better"
Sports fans hear it over and over. At halftime the trailing coach is asked what adjustments his team needs to make in order to come back and win. He answers, “We just need to execute better.” In other words, there is nothing wrong with the game plan, we are just not doing what we are supposed to do.
In sports, better execution may or may not always solve the problem. Sometimes one team has clearly superior athletes or coaches or both. Even the best players, however, still must execute consistently to be successful.
Let’s apply this coaching wisdom to our service to God. In this application, there is never anything wrong with the plan: it is perfect, coming from God Himself in His word. Problems or failures do not call for a plan change; they call for better execution.
God’s plan for marriage is from the beginning: one man and one woman joined by Him for one lifetime (Genesis 2:24; Matthew 19:4-6). Children born to this union are to honor their father and mother (Ephesians 6:2), which includes caring for them as they age (Mark 7:10-12; 1 Timothy 5:4).
God’s plan works! When problems arise . . . and they do . . . it is due to poor execution. Some lack the essential commitment to each other. Some become self-centered. Poor communication, lack of humility, and unwillingness to repent or forgive are common culprits. Immorality of any kind always wreaks havoc in one’s family.
The solution is not, as some are now suggesting, abandoning the “nuclear family” and finding new arrangements in which to live together. Besides the inherent sinfulness in doing that, this approach ignores what should be obvious: the misbehavior that creates problems in one arrangement will just as surely create problems in any other! “We just need to execute better.”
God’s plan for churches is equally perfect. His word indicates independent local groups overseen by elders (Acts 14:23)—men of ability, character, and experience (1 Timothy 3:1-8; Titus 1:5-9). Deacons assist (Philippians 1:1) while evangelists “preach the word” (2 Timothy 4:2). The focus is evangelism (Acts 8:4) and edification (1 Corinthians 14:26), not food and fun! Care of needy brethren is a hallmark of God’s people (Acts 2:44-45; 4:32-37; etc.).
Again, God’s plan works! When problems arise . . . and they do . . . it is due to poor execution. It may be a brother who insists on having his own way (3 John 9). It may be an effort to accommodate church members who are living ungodly lives (1 Corinthians 5). It may be those who want to innovate worship (1 Corinthians 14) or otherwise “modernize” things to broaden our appeal. It may be doctrinal change, often to align us with worldly thinking (Colossians 1:8). It may be a few who just don’t get along (Philippians 4:2). It may even be laziness (Revelation 3:1-2)!
In any case, the problem is not with the plan, and the solution is not to alter it, add to it, or abandon it. We have no right whatsoever to do that (2 Thessalonians 2:15; 2 Timothy 1:12)! As coach says, “We just need to execute better.”