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Weekly Blog

It’s Been Four Years!

April 25th marks the Feast Day of St. Mark the Evangelist, my patron. It also marks the day, four years ago, that I began posting weekly…never missing a Wednesday since. As such, this is my 209th straight blog. Other posts, mostly on Fridays, have included notable quotes or short videos (vlogs), in addition to the occasional holiday or holy day message. Wow!!! I can’t believe it’s been four years. 

I’d like to thank you for being on this journey with me. It’s been my pleasure to engage with you. It’s my sincere hope that you’ve been as blessed as me by our time together. I’ve learned a lot over these four years. That said, the message has never changed….knowing the unconditional love of Jesus Christ is foundational to who we are. And fundamental to living a life of peace, joy, and fulfillment. 

Given the impact that the Lord has made on my life, my passion continues to be sharing the message with as many as possible. As such, I have a favor to ask. Assuming you like what you’ve experienced, can you help me share it with other?  

Weekly Blog 

This is what you’ve been receiving every Wednesday…primarily real-life issues related back to the faith…all free of charge. Please consider sending this (link) to a friend or two, helping them along the same journey you’re on.  

Mark’s Book 

Overwhelming Pursuit: Stop Chasing Your Life and Live (found in my store)…like my blogs, it’s all based on real-life experiences, where all my lessons were learned. It’s my deepest desire that you and your friends benefit from what our dear Lord taught me. It’s not about the money. 

  • If you want a book and can’t afford the $15.95, pay me what you can. 
  • If you can’t afford it at all but still want it, I’ll give it to you for free. 

My passion is getting the message that God so blessed me with to as many as possible.  

Speaking Opportunities

As part of my ministry, I do keynote talks, Parish Missions, and seminars, most of which are done on the Parish level. I’d be grateful for you to connect me with your Pastor. You can see a sampling of the things I speak on my speaking page. Should you be interested, I’d suggest emailing me so that we can connect and discuss the opportunity.  

All of my past blogs are archived on the website. There are free resources, i.e., eBook there, as well as my course and other useful items. 

I know you know, but my primary message consists of the following at a high level: 

  • God loves you more than you’ll ever know, no matter what you’ve ever done. 
  • In understanding and internalizing that love, the unimaginable is achievable. 
  • God made you for Greatness. 

The problem is that nobody talks about these things. Let’s change that together. 

As indicated, I’m blessed that you’ve accompanied my on this journey. I’ve asked for your help above. Likewise, if there’s anything I can do for you, please don’t hesitate to contact me. 

As always, please email me at Mark@MarkJosephMinistries.com with questions, concerns, comments, or prayer requests. 

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Remember…God made you for Greatness!!!

Mark Joseph

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Weekly Blog

Why You Believe You’re Loved

We grow up believing that we have to earn the love of others. The more or better we perform, the more love we perceive that we receive. How does this happen? Simple…you succeed at something, you receive all kinds of congratulations, pats on the back. You fail and you’re criticized. When intended to be constructive, it’s not always received that way. Sometimes the criticism is destructive, including no commentary at all. Many are familiar with the phrase, “the silence can be deafening”. It can be particularly hurtful to young people. It’s not done with malice or ill intent. It’s a human condition. 

My first and most glaring example of this is my high school football experience. Growing up in Pittsburgh in the 1970s (City of Champions), my brothers and I loved football, such that I started playing organized football in 6th grade. Having played successive years, sometimes as a starter and sometimes not, I quit football my sophomore year. Something I regretted for a longtime, I was intimidated by a coach. Ironically, I found the weight room and getting bigger, stronger, and faster, my identity began to take on that of my physical stature. 

I went back to football my junior year, followed by my senior season, where I didn’t start the first game. Noticed by a coach, I was moved from defensive back to defensive end, starting the rest of the season, for a team that won the championship for the second year in a row. 

All the hard work had finally paid off. Not only did I achieve several personal successes, but I was part of a team that was treated like heroes, like gods. The accolades were many and often, whether from our coaches and teammates, parents, siblings, and extended family, friends, classmates, school administration, teachers, broader school community, or the media. We, the entire team, were praised by everyone, everywhere we turned. We were celebrated for our success, treated like heroes, like gods.  

I tell you this story not to impress you. After all, it was a long time ago (literally 40 years ago), but to impress upon you how conditional love takes place. We grow up, given our experiences, believing that we have to earn the love of others. Feeling loved when we succeed, the experience is different when the opposite takes place. When we don’t perform well, we perceive that others don’t like our performance and aren’t accepting of us. We then internalize these things (positive and negative responses), with them driving much of what takes place in our lives, i.e., the hamster wheel. 

Next week we’re going to discuss what conditional love leads to and the behaviors it creates, all contributing to us being overwhelmed. There is “light at the end of the tunnel”, but first we’re going to unpack the things that create the challenges that we all experience. Stay tuned. 

Hope the above resonates with you…it does with most. As always, please feel free to contact me at Mark@MarkJosephMinistries.com with questions, comments, concerns, challenges, or prayer requests.  

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

God made you for GREATNESS!!!

Mark Joseph

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Weekly Blog

When It Gets Tough

When things are going well, it’s easy. Many don’t believe they need anything or anybody. Including committed Christians, people think things are good when things are good. If you’re like me, you believe everything happens for a reason, according to God’s grand plan. It’s easy to have that outlook when things are going well.

All that sounds great, but how do you fare during the tough times? What happens when things get challenging? It could be something at work. A health issue…with yourself or someone you love. Maybe even a relationship problem. What’s your outlook in those tough times?

Challenges can be viewed as more global things as well. One example is what’s going on in our country. It’s difficult to see the dramatic increase in violent crime, significantly rising prices, and small businesses struggling. Add to these all the conflicting messaging about COVID, threats to our civil liberties (including religious freedom) lawlessness going unchecked, illegal drugs coming across our boarder, mass censorship, and politicians on both sides of the isle who are complicit. If it weren’t so sad and alarming, it would be laughable, i.e., the new belief by some that men can get pregnant.

What’s God’s plan in the above? I’m not sure and I can’t wait to ask our Lord one day, along with many other things. I do have a couple thoughts. When as a society we have so dramatically stopped living the Christian life, is this what happens? It seems that truth no longer has meaning…is this what we get? Is God sending us a message?

An observation…when 9/11 occurred, Christians flocked to Church. Catholics were lined up to go to confession. Studies showed that statistically speaking, people prayed more and more people prayed. I know in my own life, experiencing tragedy is what brought me to my encounter with Jesus Christ…that which changed my life forever.

A Personal Issue

Or there are those personal things. I’ve had a health issue of late. Nothing too traumatic, my wife and I are concerned about where my symptoms may be leading. Over the last several months, I’ve developed a constant tightness in my hands, with occasional cramping. Although I can certainly live with the current situation, it continues to get worse. Not painful, it is affecting my grip. I’m still able to exercise daily, but I feel it. For the first time, it was bothersome when on my computer the other day. Still pursuing a diagnosis, the medical community hasn’t been able to figure it out. 

I’m sure there are others with much bigger issues than mine. In fact, I personally know several. For all of us…”why”? How are these trials, health related or otherwise, part of God’s grand plan? Remember, I’m one of those people who believe everything happens for a reason. 

Living a Life of Gratitude

You know my story and the tragedy I’ve endured. I am thankful for all of it because I know I wouldn’t’ be who I am today without experiencing those things. I live in a place of gratitude. My version of “gratitude” is believing that all things happen for a reason. I believe that for all things, the big and small, i.e., my hands. 

Jesus died a torturous death (for our sins). Given that He, our Savior, suffered tragedy, we shouldn’t expect otherwise. We’re told in Scripture that life will provide us with challenges. It won’t be easy. It’s not easy. 

Here’s what I know. Life, with its ups and downs, is better with God than without Him. I would encourage all of us to stay close to our Lord. Be prayerful. Go to Church. Maintain good, supporting relationships. Continue to discern the reasons why things happen in your life, whatever the impact. Use all to help you be a better version of yourself, for the glory of God…as difficult as that can be at times. I’ve said it before, “God loves you more than you’ll ever know, no matter what you’ve ever done”.  

As always, please feel free to contact me at Mark@MarkJosephMinistries.com with questions, comments, concerns, challenges, or prayer requests.  

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

God made you for GREATNESS!!!

Mark Joseph

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Weekly Blog

What Leaders Have to Protect Against Most

I believe strongly that any organization unwilling to reach outside itself will die. The same can be said for an organization’s leaders. Related…although I am absolutely committed to Catholicism, I believe that north of 90% of what all Christians believe we have in common. These two things in combination lead me to Reverend Rick Warren, Founder and Senior Pastor of Saddleback Church in Orange County, CA.  

My wife and I have visited Saddleback, attended Sunday service (experiencing hospitality that you wouldn’t believe), and met with Saddleback’s Pastor of Small Groups. Again, absolutely committed to our Catholic faith, I/we can be learning from others. 

The above is a preface to a blog Pastor Rick recently wrote on “pride” and how destructive it can be. Paraphrased below, you can access the blog here.

Leaders can often become their own biggest obstacle. When they start to see fruitfulness, they may be tempted to make everything about themselves. This is pride. The Bible says it’s the root of every other sin.

Pride leads to conflict, prevents growth, leads to anxiety, and angers God. The opposite of pride is humility. That’s one characteristic we want and need to develop. Leading is a heavy responsibility. We cannot do it without God’s help. 

Humility is a choice. It is something we do to ourselves. So how do we develop it in our lives? Start with these five steps.

Admit your sins honestly.

We all sin, but the Bible is clear that God is ready to forgive us. Proverbs 28:13 says, “A man who refuses to admit his mistakes can never be successful. But if he confesses and forsakes them, he gets another chance”. God gives second chances (and third, fourth, and hundredth chances) to the humble.

Evaluate your strengths realistically.

You’ve probably heard the saying—maybe from your own parents—that you can be anything you want to be. But it’s not true. If you don’t have the talent for a particular role, you won’t be able to do it. 

To deal with pride in your life, you need to honestly evaluate your strengths and weaknesses. The Bible says, “Be honest in your estimate of yourselves, measuring your value by how much faith God has given you” (Romans 12:3). Pride is based on a false image of ourselves. Humility is based on a true and realistic image. Humility is being honest about both your strengths and weaknesses.

Enjoy your success gratefully. 

Remind yourself daily of two pride-busting truths. First, everything we have is a gift from God. Paul asks in 1 Corinthians 4:7, “What are you so puffed up about? What do you have that God hasn’t given you?”.

The truth is, we wouldn’t even have breath if God hadn’t given it to us. Anything God does through you isn’t about you. It’s about Him. Everything you achieve is about Him. 

Second, one day we will give an account before God for what we did with what He gave us. It’s hard to be prideful when you realize that one day every one of your secrets will be exposed. It’s a humbling realization.

Serve others unselfishly.

The greatest antidote to pride is to give yourself away by helping others. It’s the only way to live more happily and humbly. 

The Bible teaches: “Don’t be selfish; don’t live to make a good impression on others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourself. Don’t just think about your own affairs, but be interested in others, too, and in what they are doing” (Philippians 2:3-4).

Humility isn’t thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less. We need to get so busy serving others that we don’t have time for our own gripes and complaints. 

Depend on Jesus continually.

Depending on God is how we express humility. In fact, dependence is the heart of humility. God didn’t design us to be independent—but dependent on Him. Stress often comes from taking upon ourselves what we were never intended to do. 

You’ll never get rid of all the stress in your life, but you can depend upon God for the ultimate outcome. Your circumstances don’t have to determine your response. The Bible promises great blessings when we are humble and depend on God. Proverbs 22:4 says, “Respecting the Lord and not being proud will bring you wealth, honor, and life”.

Outwardly, you may be an extremely successful leader. But your success is not about you—it’s about what God will do through you. 

Thank you, Rev. Rick. Great stuff!!! I read Rev. Rick’s posts regularly. You can get them and other resources at https://pastors.com. Let’s learn together.  

As always, please feel free to contact me at Mark@MarkJosephMinistries.com with questions, comments, concerns, challenges, or prayer requests.  

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

God made you for GREATNESS!!!

Mark Joseph