Faith & Imagination: It’s a ‘Verb’al Thing

Faith: (Merriam-Webster dictionary definition): Noun:  Firm belief in something for which there is no proof:  complete trust

Faith:  (Come to the Edge Today definition):  Verb: Firm belief in something with such trust that I allow myself to see it, experience it and become it from the end, prior to its evidence or manifestation

Living life as a verb rather than a noun is a leap in itself, isn’t it?  It means throwing away the view of ourselves as observer and reactor and instead, putting on the new perspective of ourselves as participant, creator and co-creator.

This is a major leap because when we think differently about ourselves, the transformation begins for re-membering Who we really are (and this is where the fun of living really begins!).  Living a life of faith (as a verb) means that we embrace and lay claim to the reality that we are NOW already worthy, Loved and part of the stream of Divine Love.  We acknowledge NOW that we are loved by a Creator who genuinely wants to co-create with us.

At this point, some may be thinking, “Why would I consider myself worthy and loved NOW, much less being an active participant in allowing my dreams to come true, especially since I do not believe that I deserve it.  In fact, I knowingly or unknowingly gather evidence reinforcing how undeserving I am!”  But here is the thing:  We are invited to see and experience life from God-The Creator’s point of view, not our often cloudy one.  And, from the Creator’s point of view, we are already worthy and unconditionally loved.  Faith is a backwards thing, really. Faith is seeing, feeling and experiencing the ‘end’ at the beginning. It feels awkward and tricky at first, but once you commit to seeing yourself as a ‘worthy verb’ (!) NOW, you’ll never experience life in the same way again!  You will have climbed out of the unworthy, onlooker hole and you will consciously create the life you intended.  You will fly (just as the Creator intended)!

Let’s look at some examples of people who lived their faith as a verb, daring to see themselves as worthy and loved, thereby opening themselves to the experience of co-creating their dream:

Mahatma Gandhi:  He had a vision of a free India, liberated through non-violence.  He dared to dream it, declare it, and grow with it.  His prayer, actions and life were a reflection of seeing and becoming ‘the end’ prior to its manifestation.

Mother Teresa:  Her vision was creating something out of nothing – and she did.   Her passion and creation were to serve the poorest of the poor in Calcutta. She envisioned it, prayed it, claimed it and co-created it with God prior to its manifestation; and manifest, it did!

Nelson Mandela:  He dreamed of his beloved South Africa free of apartheid.  He imagined it.  Declared it.  Became it (during 27 years in prison).  In the end, he experienced the manifestation of a free South Africa.

These three are living proof that faith, lived as a verb, is more than hope or a strong belief.  They dared to dream it, experience it and become it ‘from the end’, prior to its evidence or manifestation. We are invited to be the same!  Yet, how does one begin to be transformed from an onlooker to an active creator?  How does one change from a belief of unworthiness to a ‘knowing’ of being loved?  How does one change from a noun to a verb?

We have the tools already!  One of the most powerful….Imagination!

What does this have to do with it?  Actually, everything.  Imagination is the Creator’s tool.  Everything is born from it.  (Take a few minutes to think about this and you’ll discover how wonderfully true this is!)

Read the first chapter of Genesis – Imagination at its best!

Look at the stars – Imagination!

Look at a baby – Imagination!

Look at the ocean – Imagination!

Look at You – Imagination!

Becoming a master ‘Imagineer’ is key to faith (as a verb), creating and manifesting.  Imagining with our heart and soul, blended with Love is how we transform the view of ourselves from unworthy to worthy, from unloved to Loved, from onlooker to creator.  How to begin?  See ‘the end’ from the beginning – Imagine!

Today’s “leaping” exerciseExercise #1 It is important to understand imagination as a tool; the first part of this exercise is to explore how imagination is used.  Read the first chapter of Genesis.  Read it imagining God/Love creating through the tool called imagination.  Notice how it works.  Notice the power of it.  Notice the fun of it.  Next, take a tour of your home.  Notice 10 items you have acquired.  Remember when you first imagined them, your initial thoughts about them.  Recall the story line of how they came to be present.  If you took action in their acquisition, how did your imagination play a role?  Keep playing with this idea of imagination as a key creative tool until you are comfortable with this new idea.

Exercise #2:  These simple tools will help in developing your imagination:  The “What if” tool:  Begin your sentences (especially those that are ‘out there’ dreams or something you think is still beyond your reach).  For example:  “What if I were to travel to Europe this year”?  “What if I were to land my dream job in the next 6 months?”  “What if I were to meet the person I have been dreaming of this year?” “What if I really am worthy and loved?”  This is a powerful tool to use because it tells your mind/ego that you are just ‘pretending’  (your ego will never grasp this seeing-it-from-‘the-end’-idea, so it’s a good way to fool it!)

Another tool:  Begin your sentences with “Imagine that….”  “Imagine that I were to finish my college degree, free and clear of student loans!”  “Imagine that I had more free time to…..”.  Then, allow yourself to flow with the dream.  Since, at this point you are ‘just imagining’, let it take you to new heights and feelings of having it already come true.  One additional tool:  Use the preface “Pretend that”…..

Use these often as they can lead you to unleashing the creative power of your imagination.

Exercise #3:  Now that you are familiar with imagination tools, let’s do an important exercise for seeing ‘the end’ from the beginning:  Athletes use this tool when preparing for their event.  They actually see themselves at the finish line.  They imagine and ‘become’ the experience.  From this stance, they begin their race.  The apostle, Paul also used this tool as he spread the Gospel message:  “Just one thing, forgetting what lies behind, but straining forward to what lies ahead, I continue my pursuit toward the goal, the prize of God’s upward calling..” (Philippians 3: 13,14).

Find a quiet, uninterrupted spot.  Close your eyes and imagine something you want to experience – an event, a relationship, job, etc.  Imagine with as much detail as possible.  Use all your senses.  How does it look?  Feel?  Hear?  Imagine it as though complete.  Be as detailed as you can.  Imagine it as if it were real.  “Become” it.  Revel in it.

“Becoming” happens with persistence.  Repeat, Repeat, Repeat, Repeat!!! Developing this technique and allowing yourself to become your dream is essential for living the life you intended.

“…you must assume in confidence that this new state of consciousness will become incarnated through your absolute fidelity to the assumption that you are that which you desire to be.” – Goddard Neville

As with Gandhi, Mother Teresa and Mandela, be patient and persistent.  Be faithful to this Creator’s gift and it will be faithful to you – Joan Kappes

Photo courtesy of Tinypic

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