BORN WITH IT: THE MASTER’S DECREE
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” -Jeremiah 1:5 NLT
Before you invest another dime in anyone or anything else, invest in you. Invest in the idea, the vision, and purpose that God invested in you. That seed. Settle this truth within yourself, that you are valuable, you have something to offer, and that you can do it. Use your voice to tell your story so others will know they are not alone. Use your mind to produce life-changing ideas and solutions. Use your hands to create something useful and beautiful. Use your heart to believe the best is attainable for you, as well as your community. Sometimes the knowledge, skills, and experiences you possess at the current moment are enough to accomplish the task at hand.
I recall dreading taking the GRE Test for years, after graduating college with my bachelor’s degree. Even though I landed a great job in my career field, I felt that I needed more. More education, more money, and more success. I thought the key to becoming more would be unlocked once I attained a master’s degree. I attempted a few Master Programs, but I never finished. In my mind, this was a major damper to my future success. But in my lowest moments regarding this issue, I would hear His small still voice whisper, “Master’s Decree over a Master’s Degree”.
I wrestled with this mantra for several years, before buying into this concept. Could it be possible that a God I’ve never seen, had arranged a pre-ordained plan for my life, to unfold and evolve into something greater than what I had planned for myself? Again, I admit it took some time for me to buy into this frame of mind. But now I believe and know this to be true of God. Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” (King James Version).
What happens when what you want for yourself contradicts with what God wants for you? James 4:3 reads “And even when you ask, you don't get it because your motives are all wrong--you want only what will give you pleasure.” I have learned that what I want for myself is only a fraction of the pleasure, satisfaction, love, and never-ending fulfillment the Will of God affords me. Shifting our confidence to The Master’s Decree over the Master's Degree requires the work of dismantling thought processes, traditions, and trends set in place by systems that do not align with your divine purpose. One morning I awakened to an intriguing thought, “Suppose if we sought to understand ourselves through God’s eyes, as much as we seek to understand God himself? Wouldn’t we have a better chance at understanding the fullness of God? and as a result receiving and manifesting His will for our lives at an exponential rate?”
The Prophet Hosea recorded this saying “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children,”-Hosea 4:6 Holman Christian Standard Bible. After reflecting on this scripture, I realized that what a person is not aware of, nor can fully understand about what drives him to respond or motivates him to act, can either slowly or quickly destroy him. Either way ignorance is cancerous and deadly. We should all seek to understand who we are as spiritual beings, human beings, members of genealogical systems, as well as the community. With this train-of-thought and insight, I highly recommend we all invest in the services of Helping Professionals.
Helping professionals use a variety of skill sets to help facilitate both personal and professional development in the lives of adults. Each skill set is distinct in its purpose, function, and outcome and therefore must be clearly understood by the helping professional as to when, why, and how to utilize each skill. I will briefly compare the distinct elements of the following helping professions: Mentoring, Counseling, Consulting, and Coaching.
Mentoring- In the book Mentoring 101, John C. Maxwell quotes “If you want to succeed as a mentor, first seek to understand yourself and others.” A mentor is an individual who has mastered a position or ability and now seeks to assist another in succeeding to that point (Maxwell, 2010).
Counseling- The term “counseling” carries a negative connotation on a personal and professional level. Peitler wrote, “counseling is reserved for employees with “psychological problems” (2010). This statement is clearly false, yet it represents the majority view of the profession. Counseling is designed to help individuals experiencing distress and dysfunction within self-and/or a relationship explore past issues that affect present-day functioning (International Coaching Federation, 2016).
Consulting- According to the International Coaching Federation, consultants diagnose problems, prescribe and implement solutions (2017). When an organization endeavors to attain a specific goal, an expert in that arena is hired to recommend a clear course of action based on proven data. After the recommended course of action is presented, the organization can decide whether to implement the recommendation (Cannio & Launer, 2011).
Now that you are aware of the function of each helping profession, you can schedule your first session with the appropriate professional, accordingly. I recommend that you become highly aware of your values and belief systems during this phase of the process to change. Knowing this pertinent information gives you a starting point for your journey. Please be aware that you need a foundational truth or philosophy of life that is valid and reliable (evidence prone). This is necessary for your journey. If you have a foundational truth it will be challenged. If you don’t, this will be the opportune time to cultivate one.