To know Craig is to know a man with great depth. His passion for the Lord and his continual pursuit of Him, inspires those around him. He walks out his faith daily and exhibits a posture of humility; which makes him approachable, likable, and authentic.
Now, Craig has penned a project that is sure to the world a glimpse of his soul. In his new book, Ps & Qs: The Journey to Becoming Prime Quality. Hines shares deep insights, inspired by his late grandfather, Thomas Alton Glover Jr. and pulls from places in his life that are real and relatable.
My hope is that as you read through our interview together and hear the sentiments of some of those closest to him, you will get to know this emerging author a little better.
"Humility is not hiding, but it's using what God gave you for His glory and trusting it. To be courageous enough to move on it, and trust Him with the rest."
SAM: What was the inspiration for Ps & Qs: Journey to Becoming Prime Quality?
Craig: God being the push behind it, the inspiration, just Him ordering my steps mentally and from a spiritual sense. In a natural sense, definitely my grandfather. All my life, he [my grandfather] told me Ps and Qs. That was like his "I love you", but to him, that meant "mind your manners, be on your best behavior and do the right thing." It [surely] means those same things today, but just growing and maturing, it expanded in definition. He was my father-figure, predominantly for my entire life, so when he passed it was rough, but I never knew that that phrase [Ps & Qs] would be echoed in my heart forever.
SAM: What does Prime Quality mean to you?
Craig: To me, "Prime Quality" means when you reach a point where you realize that you never stop becoming your greatest self. I don't believe that there are any peaks in God. The higher you go in Him, the better you are in your life. So, if God is infinite, than so is your potential, so is your ability, so is your love, so is your greatness, so is the glory that He'll bring through you. Prime Quality is the best state that you can possibly reach. You reach your greatest self when you realize you never stop becoming it.
SAM: For whom was this book written?
Craig: [giggling] It's dedicated to my grandfather. But really, it was me being obedient to God. It was Him leading me to do it; without necessarily knowing the destination, [it was important for me to] just write, just express, just speak, pray-- release. The clarity came more through it as it got closer to its last page being completed. I want hearts to absorb what God said through me, but it was also for myself.
SAM: Would you say that this process was cathartic for you?
Craig: I would say yes. My grandfather passed my senior year of college. I think of him everyday, but through [my] maturing, it moved from grieving to glory. I had to grieve first, because that made the glory more powerful. It was rough, Lord knows His grace has been with me through every phase of it, so it has been well worth it, truly.
SAM: Why was it important for a book like this to be written now?
Craig: I work at Bishop McNamara High School [our alma mater, C/O 2009] and I am afforded the opportunity, privilege and blessing to teach 9th grade [Freshman Seminar]. With everything I've received from that school, I count it a blessing every day to try to sow back into it. I find myself telling my students and their parents, "would you want your senior year self to thank your freshman year self?" You want to work in such a way now, that your older self thanks you. So you asked why was this is important now? [It's] because the Ps and Qs are going to always be with me; I know that as a 26-year-old now, it will mean more when I'm 30. It will mean more when I'm 35 and so on. This was so necessary because [of ] the peace that was attached to it. [It] just lets me know where I am, in alignment with His will.
SAM: What do you hope as the author for readers to take away from Ps & Qs?
Craig: I believe that God sets things up in a way where He'll bring you to something at the right time. He allows for your circumstances to be tailored to you. So I believe that [for] the readers wherever they are in life, it will speak to that place. I want them to get this: I want them to believe in themselves. "Don't condemn yourself for where you are in your life, because every single season is contributing that better you. All of the trials and the triumphs. Respect your process and [learn to] appreciate your pain. Embrace those moments and hold God's hand through it all because often times we have no idea what He's stirring up inside of us. "
Believe in the unknown and let your faith serve you in that place.
SAM: What have you learned since writing the book?
Craig: I've learned that I am never going to stop learning. I've learned to understand that perfection should not be my goal. Not perfection, but progression. I've also learned to write and speak even if it doesn't sound correct to me at that time. Though it may not sound correct to you, you don't know how it [your perspective] may resonate with somebody else. And I've learned not to write for perfection; but to do it authentically.
SAM: What series of events brought you to this point; wanting to share your story in this way?
Craig: What led to all of this was my grandfather's passing and just the role that he served in my life as a young man, all the way up to me as an adult and just the love and the upbringing [that] had always [been] sowed into me. I wanted to trust my gift. I guess this is my first attempt to sow a seed into the world: to teach that humility is not hiding, but it's using what God gave you for His glory and trusting it. To be courageous enough to move on it, and trust Him with the rest.
SAM: If you could describe this moment or title this chapter of your life, what would it be?
Craig: "Lost in Gratefulness"
"This whole time I thought I'd been teaching him, but he's been teaching me. Craig's got such a mature soul. Sometimes he just inspires you to want more, to do more and bite the bullet and take life as it is. He's inspired me in so many different ways. He's motivation and I can't wait to see him grow even more."
- Remington Culver
"Craig is different. The way his carries himself, the way that he talks to people: he always has something nice to say about people, he's always there for everybody. You don't see that a lot these days and it's good to see that from this special young brother."
- Danny "Sleepy" Thompson
"Craig has been an influence to my spirit."
- Janay Boughton
"Craig's humility inspires me. He's by far the most humble person I have ever met."
- Jasmine Duke
"Congratulations on a job well done. You have done impeccable work. I'm so proud of you. I'm always here to support you in every endeavor. I want you to remember the next charge that I gave you, which is "three by thirty."--I want to be calling him Dr. Hines"
- Lesia Banks