Last week I asked you to imagine yourself a professional athlete or Olympian, or an actor, musician, or artist, pointing to the disciplines needed to excel. I then related that to our talents and purpose, making the point that the only way we find our greatness and live lives of peace, joy, and fulfillment, is to avail ourselves to God’s love, grace, mercy, and wisdom. We do so all 7 days of the week (not compartmentalizing our faith) in knowing our identity in Christ…knowing His unconditional love. We also do it in relationship with Him, the Holy Trinity, which is through prayer and the Sacraments.
I’m hopeful that those connections ring true to you. They do to me and have changed my life.
With me knowing my identity in Christ, knowing His unconditional love, in embracing my talents and purpose, I’ve developed a deep thirst to grow in faith. The longest 12” in the world is between the head and the heart…we need both on this spiritual journey
- The heart feeds the mind as guided by the Holy Spirit
- We can’t be catechized until we’re evangelized.
Related, believe it or not, it’s only following what the Church teaches(disciplines), that you’ll find peace, joy, and fulfillment. What we’ve not discussed yet is the what the Church has to offer us in this regard. Tons of things can be found within the Church proper and other places:
- Holy Scripture – so many ways to read and pray through it
- Catechism of the Catholic Church – rich with historical perspective and information on our faith; comes in several forms
- Encyclicals by our Popes, documents by Doctors and Fathers of the Church
- Books by Scripture Scholars and Theologians…hundreds of years old to current day
- Faith-based books like mine, where the author has a significant spiritual experience(s) and wants to share it to help others
Where to Find this Stuff
In today’s world, it’s not just books. There are videos, podcasts, blogs, vlogs, websites, social media posts, internet searches, conferences, virtual events, seminars, webinars, video conferences, Parish Missions, Retreats, teaching series, individual talks, online and on ground education, including graduate level, certificates, certifications, and more…I’m sure I’m missing something. You name it and you can avail yourself to it…really anytime day or night.
No matter who you are, you can find things that speak to you. There is so much out there, on so many topics related to our faith, those that:
- Feed the heart
- Feed the mind
“Back in the day”, I used to follow Zig Ziglar, famed sales trainer and motivational speaker, who said that by listening to cassette tapes (aging myself) for 30 minutes a day, you could gain a master’s degree in 2 years. Although I’m not sure exactly how true that is, I’ve also heard that reading just 15 minutes a day can change your life. I read 45-60 minutes a night and I believe it has changed mine. Consistent with our current times, I think that applies to listening and watching too…good stuff that helps form yourself into being your very best.
There’s an expression…you can judge the character of a person by the books he/she reads and people he/she associates with. Prior to my conversion, I read books on wealth creation and management, leadership, organizational health, sales and sales management. I hung out with a bunch of guys that wanted to make gobs of money. Today I read mostly faith based books and surround myself with brothers in Christ.
I believe all the answers to life are taught by the Church and can be found in Scripture. We’ve covered a small part of it here. Keep looking though. The more I learn, the more I find I want to learn. And one thing I’ve learned is this. We know the end of the story. We know that Jesus won victory for us. What many don’t know is that not only are we made for greatness, but…there is a practical reality to living that greatness all 7 days a week, instead of compartmentalizing our faith.
As always, please email me at Mark@MarkJosephMinistries.com with any questions, comments, concerns, suggestions (of future blog posts or other), or prayer requests.
God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!
Remember…God made you for Greatness!!!