How to invest in idyllic times: how to turn ideas into lasting change

How to Invest in Idyllic Times

02 MAY 2023 EDIT: I've made this study into my first ever e-book, available on Amazon! All content on this blog post is not included in the e-book, so to get the full experience, be sure to swipe through this, then click through to purchase the book to get all exclusive content!

Cover Art for "A Garden in the Desert" Ebook


“Intelligent minds invest to create idyllic times.”
- Michael Apa 

I wrote this line just a few months after a life-altering event. I was forced to find my purpose on this planet, because I had to know that what I was going through was somehow worth it. In this time of healing and self-discovery, my mind has been both my greatest asset and my worst enemy. 

I knew I wanted to give back to my hometown, Goroka, Papua New Guinea, I just didn’t know how. I wanted to redeem the time I spent pursuing foolish pursuits of my youth and provide a good life for my growing family. This 7-word phrase became a call to action for myself as I began planning what would become One Little Big Shop. 

It wasn’t until recently that I learned I was good at writing, so the way I write is a bit more technical then, say, my wife who has always loved writing. I study each word, look at its synonyms and investigate the definition, and its correlation with Biblical principles. I then align it with equally powerful words that match the cadence I am looking for. I’ll do a similar breakdown with you here as we go through my “IDYLLIC” one-liner: 

Intelligence is the ability to absorb knowledge and execute or carry out the retained information.

This directly relates to Proverbs 1:7. Learning is like eating. We eat to grow stronger and to do work. We need food to accomplish what we need to do on earth. So, with this in mind, think of a baby and what Hebrews 5:11-14 says; we need spiritual milk before solid foods. You won’t grow in intelligence if you don’t submit or admit that you don’t know everything. 

You will never be intelligent if you don’t admit there is a greater power that can teach you. 

The teacher who will give you the basic principles (or milk) is the Holy Spirit (who is wisdom). The Holy Spirit also acts as the mediator between God’s thoughts and ours. The miraculous thing is, when the Holy Spirit speaks to your soul, it is up to you to manifest it in this reality. 

We are like the earth, bringing forth a harvest. When we feed our mind and our spirit with the Bible and prayer, we are watering our “garden”. We have to do the work to prepare the garden, and that can include digging (or the discipline of getting up and doing the work of reading the Bible, going to church, praying, etc while challenging our existing beliefs systems or assumptions), chasing away the birds (adversaries) or clearing out weeds (or the bad thoughts or ideologies that go against the Spirit). This way, when the seed– or the Word of God– is heard, it falls onto good soil, and the earth will grow to produce a good harvest (according to His will as He gives the increase). 

Our purpose was already in place before time began. When we nurture it and supply it with ample sunlight and water, and keep the weeds away, we will grow as the trees grow, strong and fruitful. (Psalms 1:2-3).

Before the Fall, the Garden of Eden was prime real estate, idyllic in every way. “Idyllic” means extremely happy, peaceful, pleasant, beautiful, picturesque. It can also mean it exemplifies a standard of perfection. We often think that the world is without hope and we cannot do anything to change situations, and it can so easily discourage us from actually doing anything that will invest into that change; therefore paralyzing us out of investing into our economy, down to a personal level. 

The same dust and soil we are made out of was used to make “every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food” in Eden  (Genesis 2:9). Everything that comes out of the earth, is inside us (Genesis 2:7), and will come from us when we die. Some parts of our being can correspond to what we see outside (the earth, the trees, etc), because we are of the same things. 

But we are God’s only creation that contains His breath or Spirit blown into us, we are the only ones with dominion. Because that same Spirit has dominion and can move through us. 

We are given the same power to manifest something on earth that is by His will and in line with our purpose. God created the foundation of this “house” when he made the world, and he has created us to be builders to build on top of it whenever we use our gifts.

To invest means to “spend something (time, energy or money) to ensure a profitable future.” 

Think of your mind like an engine. When you give an engine the proper fuel (intake), the car will run (outtake). If you give it improper fuel, it will stall out and die, or cease to be useful.

 “My people are destroyed because of lack of knowledge” (Hosea 4:6). From a Papua New Guinean perspective especially, we need to prepare ourselves to pour into our country the way we pour fuel into our cars, and with enough time, energy and money, change will happen. 

We don’t need to wait on foreign aid or until our government “stops being corrupt”. God gave us work to do on this planet, so that even when you do not have money, what you have to give is your time. Time to eat food for your spirit to grow strong. 

Rid your mind of the weeds–or ideologies that do not align with the Spirit. Do this so that you may be ready for what physical bread cannot satisfy. But change will only happen if you are willing to invest and actively pursue it.

 Look at the poem again and divide it half– “Intelligent minds invest || to create idyllic times”-- the second part won’t happen if we don’t do the first part. Every step of this is important.

For me, I am spending time investing into my gift– the gift of Sound, manifested as the way I write these two-liners. Hebrews 5:11 came to me last year in the middle of the hardest time in my life, when I felt totally empty, alone and directionless. I found that if I repent and submit to the Holy Spirit and dedicate my time to studying the Scriptures and praying, I can write two-liners that can really impact people who are struggling, make them feel seen, understood, even. As I overcome this trauma, I am trying to invest into my mind, so the outcome is a meaningful business practice. A lot of people see the big picture problem, but not very many see how they can change the situation, or address the problem. I want to be different. 

I guess you could say this is the one of the main reasons my wife and I stepped out in faith to build up One Little Big Shop. It is an actionable step to create idyllic times. 

If you like what I have to say, please feel free to like, share and comment! Means alot if you let me know what you think.

Also, if you liked this and you live in the US, this one-liner is available on coffee mugs and clear acrylic mugs (available in the US) for purchase! Scroll to the bottom of the page to see selection. 

Thanks for reading. 

More to come. 


If you like this poem, we sell it on coffee mugs (and soon, shirts and hoodies!) at We only ship in the US for now, but we’ll be opening our Papua New Guinea branch soon, where we will produce everything within PNG, so you can get your hands on it at an affordable price. If you want to be apart of our PNG commissions team please contact us at 

Don't forget to purchase the full study as an e-book, "A Garden in the Desert", available now! Click the picture to purchase!

A Garden in the Desert Cover Art


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Idyllic Collection

like our message? get the IDYLLIC one-liner on your very own coffee mug or clear acryllic cup!

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