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Showing posts from November, 2017

My Dreams2Destiny Journey

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As we celebrate our 10th year in the digital landscape, we want to say thank you to all of you that share with us each and every day. When Cup of Joe began as a short column in Carman's newsletter(actually 20 years ago in 1997), I never would have expected to be sitting here today still talking about it and seeing it touch lives all over the world. When I wrote the book "Dreams2Destiny", I hoped to share some of the experiences that I had trying to discern what the Lord wanted me to do and also how I went about discovering that for myself. It came from a story in scripture about Jairus and his little girl. Jairus would experience so many emotions in his pursuit of Jesus and healing for his daughter. In short, to see his dream come alive, he would need to stay close to Jesus and be obedient to all that He said. And he would move through five seasons: dream, desperation, delay, divine assurance and destiny. I included in this book a series of questions I had asked myself …

Just One Question

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There was a blind man that heard Jesus was coming to town. Jesus had a reputation for making things work that didn't work.  Legs, arms and even eyes! This man could not see but he could speak, in fact he could yell. And that's just what he did! When Jesus was coming by he yelled "Jesus, have mercy on me!" His voice was so loud that it could not be ignored. His voice stopped Jesus. Jesus had him brought closer. When the blind man was standing before him, Jesus didn't touch him. Jesus didn't start to pray for him. Jesus did not anoint him with oil. He simply asked him a question: "What do you want me to do for you?" What a landmark moment! It's what we would call adivine appointment. Our pursuit places us in the presence and the power of Jesus. And what does He ask? One simple question. What do YOU want? What if the blind man had said "I want something nice to wear?" Or "I'd like to have a nice home in the burbs." Bartimae…

If You Love Christmas Cookies...

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If you are one of those that chooses not to engage in the chaos of Black Friday, but would still like to get a start on your holiday shopping, I've got a special treat for you!
This has been an amazing year for Cup of Joe. We have been able to share many resources and encourage people all over the world! One of my favorite parts of Christmas are the Christmas Cookies. Several years ago I started a little series at our church called, "Christmas Cookies: Edible Treats for Your Body and Soul". I would highlight some of my favorite Scriptures and pass out cookies and milk to everyone participating. After doing this for a few years, I decided to put these treats in a little book. And after the teachings, I added some of my favorite Christmas Cookie recipes gathered from friends and family. This book is perfect for that new Kindle, Ipad or smartphone! So today and through this weekend, you can get this downloadable e-book for a donation of any size to Cup of Joe, Inc. You wil…

A Thanksgiving Recipe

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As you get ready to celebrate the holiday season and enjoy time with friends and family, I encourage you to use these moments to be kind to one another and let people know how grateful you are for their love and friendship. Thanksgiving truly leads to thanks living.
Rather than offer you a special recipe for the table, let me suggest one for all of those that will be sitting around that table: a recipe for the perfect Thanksgiving. It comes from the first book of Thessalonians:
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances;  for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Rejoice! Being joyful doesn’t have to do with your circumstances. It’s a choice you make in spite of those circumstances. A decision to be joy-full is the perfect start to a blessed holiday. Rejoice always and in all ways! Pray…continually. Before you let your mouth speak, pray about what you say and how you say it. Pray for the well-being of all of those connected to you. When you are unsure about an…

I Pray

I Pray
The idea for this song was birthed out of my exposure to countless stories of people I know dealing with terminal illness. In each account there are emotions and thoughts that can be described so many different ways. Everyone beats disease: here or in heaven! In “I Pray” we meet a man who is going through a recollection of moments when he remembers his wife…”I see her in the mirror”, her voice calling out, even a spot in the yard where they used to stargaze together. In the midst of a flood of special memories, life changes. No one knows the time, the hour, No one knows the day When every dream that you believed in is quickly taken away No one knows the season when your life gets turned around She was all I had, until that day
Many people endure seasons and situations when they feel helpless, even hopeless. The chorus lends to the only thing the man can do…”now I pray that she’ll come back to me, Lord I know that it will never be…still, I pray
One of my dreams for this song was to help…

At Just the Right Time

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In John 11 there is a story about a friend of Jesus...a man named Lazarus. Let me paraphrase a bit for you. Lazarus had gotten sick and died while Jesus was away. Mary and Martha were upset that Jesus did not come when they called for him because they felt that he could have saved his life. They were about to learn something that I learn everyday...Jesus' time table is not mine! Eventually Jesus shows up, explaining that his tardiness was about to make sense and His father was about to be glorified with a miracle. Hope had dissipated as he had been buried in a tomb for 4 days. The world had given up. But not Jesus. He arrived at the tomb and told those around to roll away the stone. And then he called Lazarus by name! Lazarus...COME FORTH! What they all witnessed next had to be astonishing as this "mummy" limped out of the tomb into their presence! The crowd was amazed and while they all stood there with their jaws open, Jesus told them to unwrap him. We all have dreams…

Waiting?

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"Then Abraham waited patiently, and he received what God had promised". Heb 6:15
Abraham was blessed by God and was told that he would be the beginning of an amazing lineage…a father of many nations. God made a promise to him. But it did not happen overnight. Abraham had to wait.  Most of the things I find myself praying for seem to come after a period of waiting. How we wait is important. What we do in the waiting is as well. Abraham had tenacity when it came to waiting. He waited patiently and with unshakeable resolve. He held on to the promise and did not let go until it came. Most would have said that his window for starting a family was over…"Abraham, you must have missed God". But he didn’t. He received what God had promised. You may be "waiting" on your own personal promise from God today. It may have been some time since you prayed about it and all you do now is wait. Don't give up! Hold on to the hope you have and don’t waver. Stick to it until …

Relationships Matter

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Don't be fooled by those who say such things,  for "bad company corrupts good character." 1 COR 15:33
Many people think that they have the power in themselves alone to change others. They marry people that don’t have the same standards and they hang with people that do different things. Their motives are pure and honorable but unfortunately, most of the time, rather than changing others for good they find themselves diminished and demoralized.
Someone once said people are like elevator buttons…they will either take you up or take you down. There is nothing more frustrating than getting on an elevator that you think is going up, only to find it going the other direction. Or having someone get in and push every button between where you are and where you are going!
Examine your connections. Delete and remove people, things and places that drain life out of you and steal your joy. Look for people that inspire, motivate and ignite the great things in you. The right relationships …

#thankful # proud #veteransday

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Confidence in God

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Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Confidence...it's something that each and every one of us needs to develop in our lives. Someone once said that it was the feeling you have before you understand the situation. How true is that! Another definition describes it as self-assurance that comes from having faith in our own abilities. Confidence is not arrogance. Arrogance is confidence without reason and wisdom. Arrogance causes you to be separated from others. Confidence draws you into the pack. Confidence in God helps you be all that you were meant to be in the midst of others.

You were created to do good things for God with your life. You were born with natural and supernatural ability. You are in the place you are in today because of your character, your personality and your God-given skill-set. But mostly, because the Lord placed you there. Now, it's time to let all …

Worry Prevents Joy

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Is it even possible to live a life with “no worries”. Like the song said "Hakuna Matata"! Life really is too short to worry about things that we can’t change anyway. So I guess the question is, why then do we worry? Let me present a couple thoughts on this:

1-Perhaps it is because our image of God is not as big as the image of our difficulty.
The reason Jesus tried to teach us about anxiety is because he knew it would come. Anxiety comes from the word anxiousness. In this world Jesus said you WILL have trouble. There will be lots of things that you could worry about. But he said BE OF GOOD CHEER, I have overcome the world. I am bigger than any problem that you may face. Could I really believe that God could take this BIG mess and untangle it so that I could enjoy life again? Could the mess become a message? Can I live a good life though my business has folded? Is there life after divorce? Can God use someone like me that has been through things I would never want to talk abo…

Simply Gifted

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There is no better way to start this week than giving you some encouragement and hope. You are simply giftedYou have every spiritual gift YOU need. God is going to keep you strong. But don't take my word for it. You can read it today from the pages of 1 Corinthians...
"I always thank my God for you and for the gracious gifts he has given you, now that you belong to Christ Jesus.Through him, God has enriched your church in every way—with all of your eloquent words and all of your knowledge.This confirms that what I told you about Christ is true. You have every spiritual gift you need as you eagerly wait for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will keep you strong to the end so that you will be free from all blame on the day when our Lord Jesus Christ returns." 1 COR 1:4-8
Everything that you need for today, this week, this month is already inside of you-delivered by the One who made you and planned for you to be incredible! You are simply gifted!
Pass on some encou…

In Awe of Him

In 2010 I was able to write my first musical about the story of Jairus and his daughter being healed by Jesus. Several of my friends from church contributed original songs as well. It was such a special time.
One of the songs I wrote was called "In Awe of Him" and was very close to my heart. On the record we recorded for this, my song was sung by my brother-in-law. Today, as a #SundaySpecial, I thought I'd share my original demo which I sang. Hope you enjoy:)

In Awe of Him-DEMO by Joe Jones

Down, Down, Down

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Today, let me tell you a story about a guy named Jonah. God spoke to him and told him to go to a city called Nineveh and tell the people to start living right. Jonah heard God but left for Tarshish. He didn't listen to God. He ran away from God! That was the beginning of a downward spiral in his life. First he went DOWN to Joppa. He found a boat sailing that direction, boarded it and then went DOWN below deck to rest. A great storm came upon the ship and it wasn't long till Jonah realized that it was his disobeying God that was bringing on the chaos. So he told the shipmates to throw him overboard and Jonah was thrown off and went DOWN into the water. Every decision he was making was taking him DOWN! God sent a BIG FISH to swallow Jonah and rescue him. And once Jonah found himself in the belly of the whale he had a change of heart. Jonah prayed to God in that desolate, dark place and God heard him. He spent 3 days and nights in there before the fish spit him out on dry land. Thi…

A Lot to Lose

Did you know that what you are willing to walk away from determines what God is able to bring to you? In other words, there are some things that God has in store for us right now but until we walk away from some of our harmful habits and critical friends, the conduit by which the blessings come is  hindered.  Consider Abraham…he left his own country and family in search of a place that God said he would give to him. He took Sarah and Lot with him. Somewhere down the road things got complicated. There was so much in both of their lives that it was time for Abe and Lot to separate. God said it was time to walk away. So Abraham gave Lot his choice of land and they went in opposite directions. Suddenly Abraham started to be blessed again and again. He learned an important lesson that day…if you want it all you may have to lose a Lot! Abraham had a Lot to lose!  What are you clinging to that keeps you stuck in neutral? Do you have a Lot in your life? Perhaps its time for YOU to lose a Lot…