Welcome to the Power of PIES. I apologize to those coming to this site looking for dessert : ) Instead, the PIES represented here is the powerful combination of Prayer, Imagination, Emotion, and Starting now. Read on, and I promise you will be impacted in a positive way. After all, life is sweet. Enjoy it!
God has given us many great things in this life. It would be impossible to think of all the great things he has done for us. However, as I lay awake in the middle of the night praying and meditating, I was reminded about one of His greatest gifts of all. What could that be? Why of course it’s…the Present!!
Every present is a wonderful gift. OK, please forgive my play on words here, but here are some thoughts I pondered on…
When does God give us all of these great gifts? In the present moment.
When do we have all control of what we think or do in our lives? The present.
When can we stand before God, fully perfect and forgiven? The present.
When in my life are there absolutely no problems and stress in my life? Now, the present.
When can I have anything I desire in life, at least in my imagination? In the present.
When I can I start my clean slate and try again, forgetting what may have happened in the past? In the present.
You may be thinking that you can’t completely forget about the past. After all, some great things have happened too, and even our failures provide some valuable lessons to learn from. I will say that you are totally correct. However, when can we re-live those wonderful memories and reflect on things to learn from? Yes, in the present.
And I haven’t forgotten about the future either. I know we have to plan for the future. But that planning for the future happens….that’s right. In the present. And as I often share here, our future outcomes in life are determined by our predominant thoughts and emotions, when? In the present.
As I often say, it is very refreshing to know that, in this present moment, we have full control of the thoughts and emotions we feel. When we are focused on the present, we don’t have to worry about stressful and difficult situations. Unless they are happening right at that moment, there is no stress in the present moment. Seriously, if something negative is happening now (and unfortunately they sometimes do) you can deal with it…now, in the present. However, if you’re not in the middle of that situation, then it is not happening now! What in this moment is your problem? Most problems we have in our lives are either something lingering from the past or something we are worried about for the future. In almost all cases, there is not a problem now, in this present moment. And if there is, and you deal with it in the present moment awareness, it is much easier to find a solution and resolve it.
I challenge you and myself to maintain this present moment mentality as much as possible today. Let us see this present moment, right now, as the great gift from God that it is. Whenever I live in the present, I feel an unbelievable peace. I want to experience this peace as much as possible, because it is indeed a gift from God. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
Not everything goes as planned. Have you heard or experienced that before? Its on a minor level as far as this blog is concerned, but that’s been the case this summer. Since I am on vacation from the stress and fast pace of teaching, I fully intended to write and share a great deal in the 8 weeks that I have off, both here and with a new book I’m writing. Well, so much for that.
It’s not that I’ve been doing nothing all summer. In fact, at the halfway point of my break, it’s been the perfect mix of peace and relaxation and fun and accomplishment. I should have a lot to write about since I have spent significant time developing my spiritual muscles and feel very close to God. Sometimes I feel like things don’t happen fast enough, but I am continually learning ways to speed up that process. I’ve also been able to travel twice in the past two weeks. One weekend at a reunion with college friends in the Adirondack mountains, and this past weekend on a family trip to New York City. Both expensive, yet priceless experiences. Other rewarding experiences have been the continual development of the golf game I started last summer, and responding to a friend’s challenge to learn German together. So far I’ve learned about 300 words in a month, and definitely feel like I can already use the language in a very minor way. Sehr gut, Joe!!
I can’t say I’ve learned a a whole lot of new ideas, but the great thing about this past month is that I’ve had plenty of time to reflect on and review what I already do know. And that is, that whenever I desire to talk to God and learn more about Him, He is there to help and guide me. Also, life is lived on the inside. I’ve shared it hundreds of times, and I’ve been reminded again in excess that the quality of life (thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs) on the inside are eventually what I experience on the outside in the exact quantity and quality.
I hope that, whether this is a peaceful or extra busy time for you, you can take some time to shape your own thoughts, attitudes, and beliefs to create joyful experiences and manifest excellence in your own life. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
One of the things that every person in this world is seeking is peace. When we have peace in our lives, we feel, well…peaceful. Now that we’ve completed our rocket science lesson, allow me to dig a little deeper into this. The definition of peace is “freedom from disturbance; tranquility.” Another is “mental calm; serenity.”
I wish I could tell you that there is a way to feel peaceful all the time. However, that is not possible. Jesus himself tells us that, at times in our lives, we will have trials and disturbances. However, I can tell you that there is a simple way to increase and maximize the level of peace in your life. Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” Another version says, “Perfect, absolute peace surrounds those whose imaginations are consumed with you; they confidently trust in you.”
So what’s the key to great peace in your life? As the verses say, the key is to keep your thoughts fixed on God. Consume your imagination on God and His presence, love, power. When you know God is with you, you know you are protected and guided. When you focus on His love, your cravings for love and appreciation are automatically satisfied. And when you focus on His power, you know you can do all things in His strength.
I have seen this proven many times in my own life. When things get chaotic, crazy, and seem out of control, I realize that I am not focused on God. I am instead focused on the circumstances and what could go wrong. The opposite is true as well. As I reflect on the greatest moments and times of beautiful peace in my life, I realize that those are the times where I was closest to God, and my thoughts were mostly focused on Him and His presence, love, and power.
The key is to stay in communication with God throughout the day. Take times to deliberately stop and pray. For me, that time is my 25 minute ride to work. The radio is off, and I spend the time speaking my heart and listening for any thoughts and ideas. For many, either the time immediately after waking up or right before going to sleep is a great time to meditate and pray. Then whenever you can throughout the day, in as many circumstances as possible, seek God and focus your thoughts on Him. I can tell you from experience that this brings amazing peace. I share this and more in my book 30 Days to a More Powerful Life.
As you can see, experiencing and maintaining peace in your life does not have to be difficult. Keep your thoughts focused on God, and seek His presence, guidance, and excellence. The Bible promises that when you seek Him you will find Him. And when you find and seek Him first, all else is added unto you, including a peace that surpasses all understanding. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
There are several Bible verses that stand out to me as being hard to believe, but powerful once I do believe it. One such verse is John 14:12, which says “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father.” For a long time, I questioned this. How could I do greater works than Jesus? No one can do that! However, over the years I have learned that if the Bible says it, it’s true. And, it’s Jesus Himself who said it!
This is a hard concept for many people to grasp. The struggle is the same as it was for me. After reading about all of the great miracles Jesus did, it is just too difficult to imagine myself or anyone doing greater things. However, here is how it happens… Because Jesus went to the Father, He sent His spirit to us. This spirit is the very spirit of God. The great thing about it (one of many great things) is that this spirit is everywhere all the time. During His time on earth, Jesus in His human form had the same time and space limits as we do. However, this spirit of God lives in us, and it moves with us wherever we go. It’s power is omnipresent and without limit, so there is nothing it can’t do!
The bottom line is that our spiritual capacity is unlimited. We can do all things through this spirit. We have everything we could ever need through this same spirit. That is a fact that is outlined in many different places in the Bible. So why do we seem to lack the power we need? Why don’t we see more of this power in action in our lives? It is simply because of a lack of belief in it. What we need to do is to open up our mental capacity to free the unlimited spiritual capacity. We need to believe that we walk in unison with the unlimited, omnipresent spirit of God.
You may be asking now, OK, great! This is great to know. But how do we use our mental means to unleash the unlimited spiritual power that’s in and around us? I believe there are many ways. However, here are the main ones that work for me and have really brought a greater awareness of and has helped to maximize the great power of God that is available to us. I have included links to articles I have written about each in case you would like more detailed information about them…
Get to know the word of God. This is important, and will help even more with the other ideas I will mention. The more you know what God says about you, His truths, and His character, the more your faith is developed. I suggest a New Testament reading plan to get started (there are many great Bible apps that have these), or whatever works best for you. The more you learn about the words and messages of the Bible, the more empowered you will be.
Positive Affirmations. – Affirmations are words and phrases you repeat to yourself on a regular basis. As you continue to say them, they start to sink in to your subconscious mind. They replace any negative, untruthful thoughts, and you start to believe them. And as you believe them, you act on them.Your current beliefs were formed by words that were repeated by others or yourself. In this case you’re just doing it deliberately with thoughts that you want to believe.
Hypnosis – I will be writing more about this topic in the near future. In the past, I have used hypnosis to make positive life changes. I have recently re-discovered its power and benefits, and it can really be used in a positive way to change your thinking and develop the faith necessary for an empowering life.
Visualization – This is another form of hypnosis, it’s just usually done in a more awake state. Like hypnosis and affirmations, the goal is to change the dominant thoughts of the subconscious mind that ultimately determine your actions.
A very effective practice I have learned is to combine your knowledge with the powerful word of God with some of these mind altering methods. Constantly repeat some of your favorite Bible verses. Visualize yourself being empowered and making great impacts by utilizing some of the great ideas of the Bible. See yourself accomplishing great things in the power of the spirit.
I will say once again that your spiritual capacity is unlimited. The key to maximizing that unlimited power is getting your mind right, and using its capacity to align with the spiritual. That allows you to do even greater things than Jesus. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
God is great, isn’t He? I like to reflect as often as I can on the great things God has done, both in my life and in humanity overall. As I did this reflection a few days ago, I became overwhelmed with awe and gratitude as I reflected on some things specific to my life. I began to truly appreciate the fact that God chose me. I never did anything to initiate this choice. Instead, He decided to use me as a vessel for accomplishing His will. Here are some of the thoughts that crossed my mind…
God chose me to be used for His glory.
God chose me to lead one of the most beautiful families on this earth, being an example to a Godly wife and three wonderful daughters.
God chose me to inspire thousands of middle school students and teach them about a new language and about life.
God chose me to write and inspire thousands of others with positive words.
God chose me as an heir to His wonderful kingdom.
God chose me to send His son to die for.
God chose me to be a beacon of light and love for those I work and play with on a regular basis.
God chose me take advantage of opportunities to further His kingdom at this particular time in history.
I can certainly add many more items to this list. As I said before, as I thought of all these truths, a feeling of awe and appreciation built up inside of me. What an honor that God would use an often weak, incapable, disobedient, and doubtful human being that’s just one of the trillions that have walked this earth in its existence to further His excellence and glory. After reflecting on this, I certainly take this honor much less for granted than I did before.
I share this not to promote my own significance, but to inspire anyone reading this. You may feel insignificant, and believe God has no place in His kingdom for you. Please know that it is not true! If you are on this earth, God has you here for a reason. You may not know what that reason is right now, and may not even be able to think of many things to include in a list like mine. However, I can tell you those reasons exist. God has you here for a wonderful reason. He chose you without you even asking. He sees you as perfect, capable, and loving, and as His wonderful child. I challenge you to accept the honor of being chosen and guided by this mighty loving God for greatness and His glory. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
Wow, Facebook has been providing a bunch of writing memories lately. My previous post was based on a quote I had shared several years ago. Today, I was shown an article I had written on the same date in 2010. I wrote this on another site I wrote with before this one. I found it interesting as I read it, so I decided to share it here. Is there really such a thing as a Christian atheist? Find out here…
There are certain things that don’t go together in this world. For example, in our country there are no Republican Democrats. There are other examples to continue this little game: rich poor people; people that love the Yankees AND the Red Sox; country city slickers, etc. There are very few, if any that would fit into both of each category.
So what about my title? Do Christian Atheists exist? I will take the cop-out answer of yes and no. Now some of you are already thinking I’ve flown off the deep end. There’s no such thing, you say. Partially true, I reply. But there’s more to this story.
First, let’s define both words. What is a Christian? The obvious answer is someone who believes in Jesus Christ, that he died on the cross, and was resurrected on the third day. Of course, there is much more to it, but that’s the basic definition. An atheist, as defined by dictionary.com, is a person who denies or disbelieves the existence of a supreme being or beings. So how can we have both at once?
I will answer that shortly. My main point is that I am reading an excellent book called “The Path to Prosperity”, by James Allen. It is an incredible book about the effects positive thinking can have on our lives. However, it is the powerful statement of negative thoughts that really gets my attention. He says, “where there is fear, worry, anxiety, doubt, trouble, chagrin, or disappointment, there is lack of faith….to fear, worry and doubt is to deny, to dis-believe. (p. 36) Wow! Did he really say that?
At first, I had the inclination to throw the book down. I couldn’t though because it is an e-book, and the whole computer would go with it. Besides, I’m not one for losing my temper anyway. However, as I thougth about this more, I realized how right the author is. We are commanded throughout the bible to have faith. There are countless stories about miracles that happened because of one’s faith. There are also many verses commanding us not to worry, create anxiety, or dwell on negative circumstances.
I am a Christian. I think I’m a pretty good one too. However, after reading this, I humbly realize I am part atheist. Every time I worry, doubt or fear, I am saying I don’t believe in the power and miracles God has for me. I am saying Jesus died in vain for me. I am saying it is more important for me to dwell on negative thoughts than to pray with faith for positive results. If I were God I would be seriously offended! Fortunately, He is very forgiving, and it is me I am hurting, not Him.
Once again, these words hit me hard and really made me think (that’s the sign of a great book in my opinion). It is as I make a much greater effort to focus my thoughts on the positive blessings God has for me that I share this with you. I am not here to call you an atheist. However, it is my desire to remind you again of: the power within you; using that power to be a blessing to others and making a difference in this world; and focusing faithfully on God and the blessings he has for you. I want to be known as a faithful, believing Christian. Hopefully you do too : )
I’m going to keep things short and to the point in this article. A quote I had shared on my Facebook a few years ago came up on my memories today, and I was reminded of its powerful message. It is by hypnotist Joseph Clough who said, “don’t settle for ordinary when the substance of you is extraordinary.”
Yes indeed, the substance of you, me, and everyone on this planet is extraordinary. That’s because the very substance that is in us, and that is our essence is the spirit of God. This truth is revealed in the Bible in Luke 17:21. It says “the kingdom of heaven (or some translations say the kingdom of God) is within you. Other translations say the kingdom of God is in your midst. I’ve written about this before, (here’s a link if you’re interested), but the dictionary definition of midst is the middle or central part. Other synonyms include the core of or the focal point of something. When you look deeper into the meaning of core, it is defined as the central or most important part of something. The part of something that is central to its existence or character.
This reminds me again, and I share with you, that the central part of us, or the core of who we really are is the spirit of God Himself. The Bible also says that this spirit is one of power and love, not one of timidity and fear. Take a moment to think about this. The core and essence of who you are is the spirit of God.
Now you see why that spirit is with you all of the time, wherever you are. It is in you and everyone else. Since you have this all-powerful, all-knowing spirit as your core wherever you are, how can you settle for anything less than greatness? It’s a rhetorical question because, even though I am more aware of this powerful spirit within me each day, I still find it way too easy to get caught up in the negativity of the world and sell myself short. It happens to most of us. However, the more you realize and focus on the fact that God’s spirit is the core of who you really are, the more positive and powerful you feel. You were made for greatness. You were made for excellence. You were made for success. And you were made to make a positive difference in this world. The great thing is that, since God’s wonderful, awesome spirit is already within you, you already have and already are all of these things! It’s just a matter of focusing on this truth more than focusing on the negativity and fear. That’s how this excellence manifests in your life.
I remind you one more time that the substance and core of you is extraordinary. You already have and already are greatness. Now go out there and demonstrate that greatness with faith and confidence to add positivity and joy to your world, and be a shining light to those who God puts in your path. He is with you the whole time, and you can do all things in His strength. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
I discuss often on this site about how the quality of your life in your outer world is very much dependent on the quality of life in your inner world, that inner world being the consistent thoughts and emotions in your mind and heart. This is backed up in the Bible which has many verses I’ve shared here often about the outer world being a reflection of the inner.
Whether the information comes from psychologists, scientists, or spiritual teachers, it is all the same. If you want to make positive changes in your world, you need to start on the inside. Whatever your subconscious mind (or your heart as the subconscious is often referred to in the Bible) believes as fact is eventually what plays out in your world. Therefore, profound changes occur when you change the established beliefs in your subconscious mind. For example, let’s say someone is seeking a long-term relationship and they are having difficulty finding the right person. This is most likely because of a subconscious belief that they are not worthy of a good person, they are unhappy with the way they look, or just believe that the right person is not out there. With this belief, they (most of the time unknowingly) are creating situations that reflect these beliefs. They are rejected for dates; they wear clothing that doesn’t fit well or is out of style, and subtly do things that prove that the right one is not there for them.
Once again, this is all because of the beliefs that are fixed in their subconscious mind. In order to change the results, this individual would first have to change the mental blueprint, the beliefs in their subconscious mind. Instead of constantly thinking and imagining the negatives I mentioned before, they can think positively. In their mind, they can see themselves as worthy and attractive. They can affirm that there are plenty of good people out there looking for the same type of relationship they are. If these thoughts are maintained, they will see different results. They will find people who see them as worthy, and attractive. It’s all about changing the mental process, the thoughts, beliefs and feelings, to reflect what is desired.
It’s always amazing to me when I read something in a secular book about psychological and scientific information, and then I read the same concept in the Bible. I have learned that it is not coincidence, but instead a confirmation that the suggestions being taught are indeed truthful. This happened to me again (as it has many times) recently. I was reading about programming the subconscious mind with the desired outcomes to enable them to manifest in my life. I was lead to two Bible verses about faith. After all, the Bible says that when you have faith, all things are possible. You receive in your life based on the level of your faith. In essence, when you change the subconscious blueprint to reflect your greatest desires, you are building your faith to the point where it allows God to do miracles in your life.
Here are the two key verses I was lead to. It was a revelation, even though I’ve read and reflected on these verses countless times before. In fact the second one I’ll mention is my favorite in the entire Bible! Hebrews 11:1 provides a very clear definition of what faith is… “the substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things we cannot see. Where is that substance and evidence? It’s in our minds! When we imagine something in our minds, and feel it’s reality, that makes it as real as if we were actually experiencing it. Try this… imagine someone dropping an ice cube down the back of your shirt. If you are focused enough, you will probably feel a chill. When I’m hot and sweaty, I often imagine submerging my head in a cold bucket of ice water. I feel cooler almost instantly. It works every time. There’s also a story about how a group of people actually practiced shooting free throws on a basketball court. Another group visualized taking the shots but never physically went on the court. When they traced their progress a week later, those that visualized the shots did almost as well as those that physically took the shots in reality. This proves what science has said for a very long time…your subconscious mind cannot tell the difference between a real and imagined event.
That leads me to the next verse. Mark 11:24 says, “whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” I believe that when you pray, you are developing the substance of what you hope for. When you believe you already have it, you are providing the evidence of what you can’t yet see materially. And another Bible verse says that, “it is done for you according to your faith.” When you convince your subconscious mind that you have what you desire, even in your imagination (remember that even in your imagination your subconscious mind believes it is real), you already have it. And according to Jesus, if you believe you already have it, your prayer will be answered.
How does it all happen? There are a variety of ways, and the way your desire is realized now may be different than ones that have been realized before. When we pray, we are communicating with God. That is powerful enough, and will add much peace and power to our lives. God answers in a variety of ways. He may not even answer in the way that you expect. However, He always answers in the way that is best for us. Another great thing that happens is that, as our belief in the fulfilled desire strengthens, we tend to automatically take actions that put us in the position to receive our desire. Going back to my example about seeking a fulfilling relationship, if you act is if the right person is already in your life even though it’s not a reality yet, you are going to feel good. You automatically act more confidently, keep yourself attractive, and even go places where you are more likely to meet someone. These actions set you up for what God has for you. Ultimately, it manifests in your world.
I will say again that in order to change external situations in your life, you need to change the beliefs of your subconscious mind. Use your imagination. Visualize yourself in the positive situations you wish to encounter. Affirm positive words of excellence. Experience the corresponding feelings. This is how your original beliefs were formed. The great thing is that you have full control of the thoughts and images you allow into your mind. When you see yourself as the person you want to be, you become that person! As your beliefs are changed, you will see the manifestation of those changes and many positive results play out in your life. And the best thing of all is that God promises this to us in His word, and His word never fails. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
Earlier today, I was going through some memories on Facebook. A year ago, I posted an amazing quote that a friend had shared. This is what it said… “if a microscopic virus can do this much damage, imagine what mustard seed sized faith can do.”
Unfortunately, there was no name credited to that amazing quote. I found it a year ago, as the shock of our world shutting down was still settling in. I will first say that what I am about to share is in no way attempt to downplay the virus that has changed our world. My family and I have been extremely lucky that none of us has had the virus, nor have we lost anyone close to us because of it. However, I do know that many other people are not so fortunate, and as much as possible, I want to be sensitive to that.
As I reflected again on the days that led up to our world shutdown (I’ve been doing that often lately as we’ve been at the one year mark) and those in the early weeks of it, there was one word that stood out to me during the entire time…shock. I was shocked that for the first time in my lifetime, we were facing a global pandemic. I knew it was real, but it also shocked me of how our society succumbed to this disease in fear. Even with this virus upon us, I never in a million years thought our whole world would shut down. Looking back, it appears that we probably needed to. However, I was still shocked, upset, a bit angry, and feeling a number of other emotions during this time as I watched those in the world live in fear of a microscopic virus. People were overtaken, brainwashed, and influenced by everything from news media, social media, politics, as well as family and friends in their own circles.
If I’m being honest, I will certainly admit that I had my times of fear and doubt as well. However, it seems like every time I did, God provided another reminder of His presence. I was shown Psalm 91 on numerous occasions in a short period of time. This Psalm specifically says that those who rely on God will be protected from every deadly disease. Other Bible verses assured me that God was with my at all times. I believed that my family and I would not be affected by this virus, and even if we were, we would still be protected and healed quickly. It was this quote that ultimately put me in a place of confidence and faith.
I share this with you now not to brag about how blessed my family and I are and have been with this (and everything else). Instead, I am reminded again that we have two main choices in life. Fear and Faith. We can allow “microscopic viruses” or imagined worries to turn our worlds upside down and do damage to our relationships, careers, and general enjoyment of life. Or we can make the other choice. We can have faith instead. God promises that if we have faith even the size of a mustard seed (the smallest seed that produces one of the biggest harvests) and have amazing impacts in this world.
Which would you rather experience? I understand that it’s often easier said than done. I’m still good at allowing difficult circumstances to steal my joy and keep me awake at night. However, I have learned that the more I have faith in God and His promises, even if it’s just a little, it makes a major difference in the level of peace, satisfaction, and success in my life. Let us not allow the invisible, microscopic seeds of doubt and fear to upend our lives. Instead, let us plant those mustard seeds of faith that flourish into amazing fruits of excellence and success in life. God is with us through it all, and with Him there, you can only succeed. Enjoy the blessings 🙂
Each Good Friday, I like to reflect on what the day represents. My fellow Christians believe Jesus was crucified on a cross. God gave us His only son to demonstrate His love for us. This son willingly gave up His life as a reminder of His love for us.
As I reflected this morning, here are the thoughts that entered my mind…
Because of what He did, I am forgiven. Every sin of action and omission, every mistake I’ve ever made, and every stupid thing I’ve ever said and done is gone and forgotten.
Because of what He did, His spirit is in me, around me, and always with me.
Because of what He did, I always have a spirit of power in me and with me.
Because of what He did, I am healed.
Because of what He did I prosper, and already am successful.
Because of what He did, I already have the solution to every problem, and the answer to every question.
Because of what He did, all joy is available to me.
Because of what He did, all abundance is available to me.
Because of what He did, I know without a doubt that I am loved in a way that I can never even imagine.
Because of what He did, I can be confident in every situation.
Because of what He did, I am completely free.
Because of what He did, I am extremely thankful for all of these things I’ve just mentioned.
Because of what He did, I am responsible to share this love, forgiveness, abundance, power, joy, and excellence with everyone I come in contact with. It’s the very least I can do in return for what this loving act on the cross has given me, even though He expects absolutely nothing in return.
This is just a short list of all we have been given as a result of the sacrifice on the cross. It’s a not a fair deal. He gets brutally beaten and crucified, and receives all of our punishment when He was completely innocent. In return, we get no punishment for our sins, and all of the benefits of the kingdom of heaven and all of the privileges of being sons of the king. However, He would still do it over and over again for us. If that’s not love, I don’t know what is. I challenge you to reflect on this sacrifice today and be thankful for what this day represents and for what you’ve been given. Enjoy the blessings 🙂