The standard of excellence seems like a punishing performance or an impossible expectation when we have the mentality that we have been abandoned to perform its requirements. We resent excellent standards under those conditions. But the standard, and the journey towards it, require presence and fellowship. Jesus can call us to perfection–a seemingly impossible standard–because he never leaves us. He rightly discerns our hearts, and the motives and substance within it. He compounds love and grace and discipline towards us. Excellence is possible when presence is consistent.