Are You a “Profess”-ional?

Nicole Headshot in blue shirt

Nicole D. Hayes, Founder, Voices Against the Grain

Are you good at what you do? Most likely, you’ll answer “yes” to this question, particularly if you consider yourself a professional. Professional…the word in itself indicates a level of expertise beyond amateur. It suggests years of study, investment, implementation, tweaking, marketing and perhaps instructing others. It’s what helps you “bring home the bacon.” It’s the reason you have a LinkedIn page, business cards, résumé, website, storefront, etc., so others can know what skills you offer. It’s the reason you attend certain networking events to connect with other professionals in your field and similar fields. Whether you’re a professional dancer, driver, event planner, photographer, singer, writer or occupy another profession, you are good at displaying what you do.

Professionals

But for all that we’ve assumed the word “professional” to mean and imply, what if we’ve only viewed it from a worldly context and not a spiritual context?

During a recent bible study I participated, we discussed the word “professional” and its origin. Per Merriam-Webster, “profession” is defined as “relating to a job that requires special education, training or skill” or “participating in for gain or livelihood.” Yet the etymology, or origin of “profession” comes from the root word “profess.” It means to “declare openly.” In the Latin, “profess,” “profession” and “to call” has been combined to create “professional.”

As Believers, we are to publicly profess God’s call on our lives. This is our “profession.” People have likened “professional” to careers, but it originally meant our calling in the Kingdom of God. A beautiful tapestry that God has created in giving you and me a purpose! God told the prophet Jeremiah, who was preordained to declare the word of the Lord, that “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:5). 

jeremiah 1;5 white

God has created you to boldly, unapologetically, unabashedly and confidently walk in your calling. God has intentionally created, elected, equipped, glorified, justified, predestined (Romans 8:30) and qualified you for your calling. The enemy and this world seeks to derail it and cause you to question it. Your gifts (Proverbs 18:16) and passions are part of your calling. Indeed, you are a called professional and you are good at what you’ve been called to do. If you are still seeking to understand your calling, ask God to reveal it to you.

-Nicole

Nicole D. Hayes is the founder of Voices Against the Grain, a bold teaching ministry launched in May 2013. Nicole’s purpose in creating Voices Against the Grain is to be light in darkness, to boldly instruct truth amid confusion so as to bring clarity and restoration.

Learn more about Nicole D. Hayes here.

 

Compliments for the Soul

Herbert Bowen, Jr.  Voices Against the Grain Devotional Writer

Herbert Bowen, Jr.
Voices Against the Grain Devotional Writer

Luke 19:17- “Well done!” the king exclaimed. “You are a good servant. You have been faithful with the little I entrusted to you, so you will be governor of ten cities as your reward.” (New Living Translation)

Listen carefully and heed the words of this verse, as pride and impatience seek to run roughshod over us. For this indomitable foe is full of ingenuity and seeks to infiltrate the very core of our being. Here, these emotions transform to resemble barnacles, which latch themselves to the inner linings of our hearts and minds, “for as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7). Therefore, we’re worthless, due to our self-gratifying mindsets. We are worthless in our rationality as God’s plan manifests itself too slowly for our liking. We are worthless in our intelligence to forget that pride was the impetus that decimated kingdoms. If you’re like myself, then ‘worthless’ is not a word to associate with, but rather ‘fruitful,’ which tells me that one day, you too, will hear those glorious words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” Amen

 

About Herbert G. Bowen, Jr.

Born in King of Prussia, Pa., Herbert G. Bowen Jr., accepted the Lord Jesus Christ at the tender age of 5. An active member of the Central Church of God in Charlotte, N.C. where he resides, Herbert serves as a youth/discussion group leader, where he has preached and taught Sunday school, as well  as Wednesday night service. In addition, he has preached at Second Baptist Church in Pottstown, Pa., Destiny City Church in Salisbury, N.C.  At his current age of 24, Herbert is the youngest board member on the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Leadership Council, where he serves to lessen the costs of tuition for African American students. Moreover, Herbert serves on the pureHOPE advisory board, where his commitment to “wait until marriage” fits perfectly with PureHope’s mission to bring a Christian solution to an immoral culture.

Finally, Herbert through the will of God writes weekly devotionals to combat the decreasing morality in the 18-30 age group a.k.a., “the transition gap.” This is an effort to re-introduce Jesus Christ to this spiritually starved generation. His devotionals go out to 2,000+ people and continues to grow under the Lord’s watchful eye.  He is a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Business Management. He provides business expertise to help others start their businesses.

Desperate to Know Your Future?

Are you desperate to know what your future holds? Who you will meet? Who will be your spouse? How your particular situation will be resolved? Where you will live? What you will achieve? When and how you will die?

It’s normal to ask these and other questions. Some people will seek out fortune tellers, hand readers and tarot card readers in hopes of gleaning the inside track to their future. These folks don’t know your future either. For people such as myself who like a plan, I love to know the “who, what, when, where, why and how” which provides great comfort for structure and predictability, but leaves little room for surprises. Knowing our future would not allow our faith to grow or the pursuance of hopes and dreams. God is the only one who knows the future. HE is the beginning and the end; the Alpha and Omega. Though we seek to have all the answers to our future, God tells us what we need to know in His Word. He tells us who He is, who we are in Him, and other details about what we can expect in this life. His Word gives us a confidence about WHO HE IS, which is the most important detail about our future. We must entrust the other specifics about our day, to Him.  That is FAITH in ACTION.

On this note, I invite you to read Herbert Bowen’s devotional below which summarizes this topic wonderfully. Thank you Herbert for sharing this message with us.  -Nicole

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Ecclesiastes 10:14- “They (fools) chatter on and on. No one really knows what is going to happen; no one can predict the future.”(New Living Translation)

NO ONE CAN PREDICT THE FUTURE. If we could, we would know the date of the Lord’s return, or perhaps the time, place, and date of our death. If we could, we would make all the right decisions, locate our soul mate (if such person exists), and be sustainably wealthy. The fact is, is that our lives would be in utter ruin if we obtained that foresight. The weight of knowing everything before it occurred would burden our spirits. Our passion would turn to apathy and our ability to anticipate would diminish. Our fervor toward the future would discourage us, as we were called to “encourage one another, as the day of his return draws near” (Hebrews 10:25).

Therefore, look forward to new ventures and relationships. Look forward to the life God has predestined for you. Look forward to growing and sharing your trials and triumphs because our future lies in the hands of God, the Almighty.

Hallelujah and Amen

 

About Herbert G. Bowen, Jr.

Born in King of Prussia, Pa., Herbert G. Bowen Jr., accepted the Lord Jesus Christ at the tender age of 5. An active member of the Central Church of God in Charlotte, N.C. where he resides, Herbert serves as a youth/discussion group leader, where he has preached and taught Sunday school, as well  as Wednesday night service. In addition, he has preached at Second Baptist Church in Pottstown, Pa., Destiny City Church in Salisbury, N.C.  At his current age of 24, Herbert is the youngest board member on the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Leadership Council, where he serves to lessen the costs of tuition for African American students. Moreover, Herbert serves on the PureHope advisory board, where his commitment to “wait until marriage” fits perfectly with PureHope’s mission to bring a Christian solution to an immoral culture.

Finally, Herbert through the will of God writes weekly devotionals to combat the decreasing morality in the 18-30 age group a.k.a., “the transition gap.” This is an effort to re-introduce Jesus Christ to this spiritually starved generation. His devotionals go out to 2,000+ people and continues to grow under the Lord’s watchful eye.  He is a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Business Management. He provides business expertise to help others start their businesses.

Remove “I” from Your Plans

I love today’s post from Voices Against the Grain guest blogger, Herbert Bowen, Jr. How many times have we/I pursued our own plans to find we’re going nowhere fast or things aren’t going as they should? Sometimes we pursue things we think we should be doing but we haven’t sought God for direction—He who knows us best. You may be a lean 6’2 though it doesn’t mean you’re destined to be a high-fashion runway model. However, God does have unique plans designed just for you. Ask Him first.  -Nicole

Proverbs 16:1 “We can make our own plans, but the Lord gives the right answer.”  (Or, “To man belong the plans of the heart, but from the LORD comes the reply of the tongue.” –New International Version)

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Herbert G. Bowen, VATG Guest Blogger

Oh Lord I try to walk, but I stumble. I create magnificent plans, but they never come to fruition. I am tired, but I find no rest. I stumble, I create, and I am tired, has anyone caught onto the destructive trend found within these statements? Well, it’s the use of the letter “I.” “I” is a tool that causes division and selfishness. “I” is what moves us away from God in search of an alternative route. Thus, how smooth is the road you have now begun to travel? Have you reached a destination of completion or success? Probably not because the answer is found within this scripture, FOR GOD GIVES US THE RIGHT ANSWER.

See, it’s the process that usually bears little resistance, or the process that falls right into your lap devoid of any contention, these processes once prayed on contain the holy seal of God. Therefore, seek and ye shall find the answer God is waiting to share with you. Amen

About Herbert G. Bowen, Jr.

Born in King of Prussia, Pa., Herbert G. Bowen Jr., accepted the Lord Jesus Christ at the tender age of 5. An active member of the Central Church of God in Charlotte, N.C. where he resides, Herbert serves as a youth/discussion group leader, where he has preached and taught Sunday school, as well  as Wednesday night service. In addition, he has preached at Second Baptist Church in Pottstown, Pa., Destiny City Church in Salisbury, N.C.  At his current age of 23, Herbert is the youngest board member on the United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Leadership Council, where he serves to lessen the costs of tuition for African American students. Moreover, Herbert serves on the PureHope advisory board, where his commitment to “wait until marriage” fits perfectly with PureHope’s mission to bring a Christian solution to an immoral culture.

Finally, Herbert through the will of God writes weekly devotionals to combat the decreasing morality in the 18-30 age group a.k.a., “the transition gap.” This is an effort to re-introduce Jesus Christ to this spiritually starved generation. His devotionals go out to 2,000+ people and continues to grow under the Lord’s watchful eye.  He is a graduate of Purdue University with a degree in Business Management. He provides business expertise to help others start their businesses.