Definition of peak performance: a state in which the person performs to the maximum of their ability, characterized by subjective feelings of confidence, effortlessness and total concentration on the task.
Every four years the Olympic games afford us the opportunity to see some truly superlative athletes—men and women performing at their very best. Regardless of whether they are gymnasts or swimmers, or on a soccer or volleyball team, these athletes make what they do look effortless.
Yet, what appears effortless is the result of years of physical and mental preparation. These athletes have trained their bodies to perform. More importantly, they have trained their minds to focus on the task at hand. Additionally, those who participate in a team sport have learned to support one another as they work towards a common goal.
What does a congregation’s peak performance look like?
For the last month, your transition team has been conducting Appreciative Inquiry interviews. We have been asking about your peak experiences as a congregation, those times when you felt most alive, most joyous, and most excited about your faith.
I’ve been at Holy Cross less than three months. If you were to interview me today about my peak experience at Holy Cross, I would vote for our intergenerational Vacation Bible School, Splash in God’s Word. I loved the feeling of synergy as we gathered around the table for our shared meals. I loved the feeling of comradery as we worked together to share the good news of God’s love with the children. I loved the feeling of joy as we laughed and sang and played together.
While we may not be ready for the Olympics of Vacation Bible Schools, our Vacation Bible School embodies many elements of a congregational peak performance. Suzanne Baggett and Judy Odam built and equipped a tremendous team of volunteers over the course of several months. We were focused on a common goal, to share God’s word with children. We supported one another. We prayed together and we played together. Although this was a first time effort, the Holy Spirit brought everything together with grace and humor.
You have shared stories with the Transition Team about your peak experiences at Holy Cross. The work of the Transition Team will be to bring these examples of Holy Cross at its best into the future God is building with us and for us.
May Holy Cross experience the flow of congregational peak performance, the synergy, comradery, purpose and joy we know in Christ Jesus!
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses,
let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely,
and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us,
looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.