Going to the World in the Attire of Professionalism
Cheer up!!! The day counted down starting from the dawn of the New Year is finally here! The extremely long days and nights spent struggling with bulky readings and assignments are over. And yeah, no more tension over final exams! It’s graduation!!
Once all the euphoria of graduation is gone, if not for all, at least the mind of the majority get caught up with “what’s next?”. I can tell this because it has not been long since I was in your shoe. Life next to graduation is full of multi-listed package from which one is becoming a professional. Well, not everyone who graduated joins the workforce as a professional. But still that is the reality for the majority. Literally speaking, acquiring a special training in a higher education qualifies a person to be called a professional. Yes, the certificate of graduation you have at hand entitles you to be called a professional. However, in the dictionary of employers and the actual labor world, it has more meaning. Among other things, to be a professional is to be a person of excellence and character. Excellence does not mean perfection rather it is giving ones best. While expounding the concept of excellence, Martin Luther King Jr. once said “If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michael Angelo painted or Beethoven composed music or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say ‘Here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.” Michael Angelo, Beethoven and Shakespeare came up with epic masterpieces that impress mankind for centuries. And that is because they gave all themselves without a reservation to what they were doing. This is the point where character comes to the light.
Giving ones best takes ones commitment, practice, persistence, and patience. The statute of David or the fresco of The Last Judgment are living witnesses for the character of Michel Angelo. Not to mention such masterpieces, sketching a simple rural scene requires engaging the mind, the emotion and the body altogether. The correlation with our topic is, the first job you get might not be as impressive as the one you have in mind or you may not even get a job right after graduation. So pulling out yourself from bed to go to work or to search for a job would be difficult. But don’t get carried away by that depressing feeling, let persistence have your back. And when you do the actual job do it with all your might, that’s commitment. Though it may cost you some patience, hard work always pays back. As Rome wasn’t built in a day, “great” salary or reputation usually is not instantaneous. So don’t get weary when some of your seniors give you that unpleasant look or denies you the promotion you were eagerly waiting for. Rather press forward till they are swept away by the quality of the work you do. It’s not only seniors that gets on your nerve. Certain jobs become to be routine, thus will be irritating. But don’t surrender for indolence that is wrapped in doing routine job; otherwise it will tangle you from giving your best. Rather, throw it off your back and strive for excellence fixing your mind on the reward that is at the finish line.
But is it worth of all these effort? Indeed, it is. If not for what you gain here and now, it’s worthwhile for what God will reward you at some point in this life or for sure in the coming life. Anyone who claims to be the follower of Jesus Christ is called to go to the world, to display Him in deed and to make others His followers. Our profession is one of the opportunities we are given to reach the world. And the God we claim to worship and follow is a God of excellence and character. So giving our best is the manifestation of our allegiance to this God. Let’s then wear the attire of professionalism with excellence and character so that we can spread the fragrance of the knowledge of God in every profession we are in.