Faith & Work Transformation: 3-Month Vocational Intensives
When I considered signing up for the CFW Vocational Intensive, I was hesitant to commit. With wedding planning on my mind, I certainly wasn’t looking to get involved in a 3-month program to take any more of my time. Some referred to it as “Mini Gotham,” which was one of the main reasons I was interested. Because I had been both skeptical and afraid to apply for Gotham, I wanted to experience a glimpse of it first through this Vocational Intensive. I wasn’t aware how much influence and impact it would have on my work life and spiritual growth.
Before this program, I never stopped to ask myself how I could integrate my faith into the workplace. In hindsight, my church, work, and social life were not intertwined, but instead, were kept separate from one another. For some time, I was selfishly preoccupied with finding the perfect job. I desired to find something that I loved to do, that made me feel better about myself, and that would gain me recognition. Essentially, I was looking for work itself to fulfill me. I wanted work to serve me rather than me serving my work. Never did I ask myself how I could serve and bring God’s kingdom into the workplace until I began this 3-month Vocational Intensive.
Through exposure to readings, theologians, and daily devotionals, I began to see things differently in the city and workplace. As the brokenness in my work became more apparent, I gradually developed a longing to engage and mend it. I started to realize the sinful, mundane reactions to work were rooted in something deeper within my heart. Rather than a simple behavioral change, I needed a true heart change. I have now come to understand that in whatever circumstance or job I am given, it is my role and desire to bring God’s glory into it by doing good work, developing deeper relationships, and seeking renewal.
The community aspect of this program was truly amazing. I was part of the Cross-Vocational group, comprised of people working in many different industries. Although we differed in job experiences, we shared similar struggles in integrating our faith into the workplace. Through our discussions, prayers, and encouragement for one another, I developed a better understanding of true Christian fellowship. As Bonhoeffer wrote, “Christian Community is not an ideal we have to realize, but rather a reality created by God in Christ in which we may participate.”
Although my transformation is ongoing, I have been equipped with the lens of the gospel, which I strive to use daily as I look into the brokenness of the city, and specifically, my field of work. My time in the program has truly been a blessing and an instrumental part of my spiritual growth
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