Coffee Inspiration: Pour A Cup of Patience

We are told that “patience is a virtue”. We also teach our children to “be patient” until we can get around to helping them. Patience, according to the Oxford Dictionary, states that “it is the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.”

The Bible clearly defines patience as it relates to the characteristics of a Christian as follows:

I Corinthians 13:4 – “Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.”

Galatians 5:22 – “But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness…”

Psalm 27:14 – “Wait (be patient) for the Lord; be strong and take heart, and wait for the Lord.”

Waiting and being patient has never been one of my most notable characteristics, but the Lord has shown me that if I wait and am patient, that he works all things out for my good and even better than I could have imagined. So instead of jumping to conclusions, I try to wait and pray and see what God is going to do about the situation. He has never failed me yet and He has always “shown me a better way.”

In “Thank Heaven for Coffee (and other little pleasures)” by Barbour Publishing, Inc., it has this to say about patience:

Patience serves as a protection against wrongs as clothes do against cold. For if you put on more clothes as the cold increases, it will have no power to hurt you. So in like manner you must grow in patience when you meet with great wrongs, and they will be powerless to vex your mind.” – Leonardo DA Vinci

The above quote sums up how we should grow in patience and Galatians clarifies the results of patience–the fruit of the spirit will be more readily seen in each and every one of us.

May the Lord help each of us to “grow in patience” as we walk with Him daily.

Blessings,
Yvonne

Coffee Inspiration: Pour A Cup of Courage

As a child, you may remember the story of the “Wizard of Oz” and how, along with Dorothy, the lion, tin man, and scare crow all traveled together to the Emerald City to see the Wizard so that they could ask for something they were missing in their lives. Dorothy wanted to go home, the lion wanted courage, the tin man wanted a heart, and the scare crow wanted a brain.

Today we are going to talk about the lion’s request: courage. Merriam Webster Dictionary states that “courage is mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.”

God’s Word is filled with scriptures speaking about courage and strength. Here are three for you to think about when you need courage from the Lord if and when you are going through a difficult time in your life:

Deuteronomy 31:6 – “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

I Chronicles 28:20 – “David said to Solomon his son, ‘Be strong and courageous, and do the work. Do not be afraid or discouraged for the Lord God, my God, is with you. He will not fail you or forsake you until all the work for the service of the temple of the Lord is finished.'”

Psalm 31:24 – “Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord.”

I believe Billy Graham summed up the word courage when he said:

“Courage is contagious. When a brave man takes a stand, the spines of others are stiffened.” – Quote from “Thank Heaven for Coffee (and other little pleasures) by Barbour Publishing, Inc.”

May we, like the lion, be of good courage and take heart because our God is always with us.

Blessings,
Yvonne

Coffee Inspiration: Pour a Cup of Love

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On Tuesday, February 14, we will be celebrating the “love holiday”–Valentine’s Day. We have heard that “love makes the world go round”, “love and marriage come together like a horse and carriage”, and “all we need is love”; but what does the dictionary have to say about love: The Oxford Dictionary gives the following definitions:

“Love:
1) An intense feeling of deep affection
synonyms: fondness, tenderness, warmth, intimacy
2) A person or thing that one loves
synonyms: beloved, loved one, love of one’s life, dear, dearest”

Husbands and wives, boyfriends and girlfriends, and family and friends try to surprise one another with a special gift on Valentine’s Day in order to try and show/express their deepest feelings of love for that person or persons.

In Corinthians 13:4-8, Christ shows us His definition/teachings of what love truly is:

“Love is patient
Love is kind
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude
It is not self-seeking
It is not easily angered
It keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.”

He sums up the chapter by saying (verse 13):

“And now these three remain:
faith, hope, and love.
But the greatest of these is love.”

I don’t know about you, but whenever I read Jesus’ words regarding what love actually is and what it means to me as a Christian, I am immediately examining my heart and life so that I can truly show this kind of love to others each and every day. Sometimes I fail. Sometimes I let the “little things” bother me and I am not thankful for all that Jesus has blessed me with. However, I get down on my knees and ask His forgiveness if I have wronged someone or said something rude. We are not perfect. We are on a journey in this world and if we show the kind of love that Christ has shown us, then this world would be a better place. All we need to do is remember to ask for His help.

As we celebrate Valentine’s Day this coming week, remember to show our family/friends/loved ones that we love and care about them and how we can always “protect, trust, hope, and always persevere” because “love never fails.”

In “Thank Heaven for Coffee (and other little pleasures)” published by Barbour Publishing Inc., we are reminded of the following scripture:

A CUPFUL OF LOVE
“God has poured out His love into our hearts”–Romans 5:5 (NIV)
Since we have been so loved, let us not neglect sharing that love with others even in the simple offering of a cup of joe.”

Blessings to All,
Yvonne

Coffee Inspiration: Pour a Cup of Peace

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John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

For the past couple of weeks as I have watched and listened to the news, I have thought a lot about the meaning of “peace.” The Oxford Dictionary states that peace is “freedom from disturbance; quiet and tranquility.” Jesus mentions peace a number of times in His word, but in John 14:27 this scripture talks about the Holy Spirit–the Counselor whom the Father will send in His name–who will “teach us all things” and “remind us of everything” regarding how we are to live our lives for Him.

In the book, “Thank Heaven for Coffee (and other little pleasures)” published by Barbour Publishing, I found the following quote by Henry Drummond which summons up and is a reminder of how we should live our lives each day:

ONE CHANCE
“I shall pass through this world but once.
Any good thing therefore that I can do,
or any kindness that I can show to any
human being, let me do it now. Let me not
defer it or neglect it, for I shall not
pass this way again.”–Henry Drummond

At the end of the Sunday service each week at the UMC Church where I have been playing the piano, the congregation sings the following parting hymn which I believe sums up the word peace as it pertains to our world today (live peacefully, in one accord, and in unity with one another):

LET THERE BE PEACE ON EARTH by Sy Miller and Jill Jackson
“Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me;
Let there be peace on earth, the peace that was meant to be.
With God our creator, children all are we.
Let us walk with each other in perfect harmony.
Let peace begin with me; let this be the moment now.
With every step I take, let this be my solemn vow:
To take each moment and live each moment in peace eternally.
Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me.”

May God help each one of us to allow the peace that “passeth all understanding” begin in our own hearts this coming week.

Blessings,
Yvonne

Coffee Inspiration: Pour A Cup of Blessing

“Bless the Lord Oh my soul, and forget not all his benefits…” (ESV) Psalm 103:2

How do we always know that Jesus is readily seen in our lives by others? Is it by our deeds and actions? Is it by our words of encouragement and sharing our faith in Jesus Christ?

On January 1, 2017, this was the question that the minister posed to the congregation as we pondered what it meant to each of us. He asked for individuals to share their experiences of how and when God made it clear that He was using them as a testimony of their faith to reach individuals who perhaps were struggling and who needed to learn more about God’s grace and faithfulness.

During this one hour service, I received a text message from our former foster son who is married and lives quite a distance away from our current residence. He shared that while they were in their church service–at the same time as ours–they began singing the song, “Make Me A Blessing” and he remembered “the blessing you are in my life” and wanted to share that thought at that exact moment. Talk about God’s timing!

Needless to say, it touched my heart and I shared that with him after the service. As I shared my thoughts with the congregation on “how do we know if God is seen in our lives by others”, I was overcome with memories and thoughts of having had our former foster son in our home for a number of years and how truly thankful I was that God had used my husband and I to show him the love of Christ.

We never know during our life’s journey what effect and/or impact we will have on others at the time; however, my husband and I have been shown and blessed with knowing that God has truly used us throughout our 40+ years in ministry and that we actually got to see some of the “fruits of our labor” with the many lives that God has brought us into contact with. Even a small word of encouragement could leave a significant impact without our realizing it as well.

“Eternal Blessings: A man may lose the good things of this life against his will; but if he loses the eternal blessings, he does so with his own consent.”–Augustine, “Thank Heaven for Coffee and other little pleasures”

May the God of grace and glory bless your lives and use you as a blessing to others.

Blessings,
Yvonne

Coffee Inspiration: Pour A Cup of Joy

“…for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”–Nehemiah 8:10

“Clap your hands all peoples! Shout to God with songs of joy.”–Psalm 47:1

How many of you remember the coffee jingle from the ’60’s, “Chock full of nuts is that heavenly coffee” or the expressions “pour me a cup of joe” and “…good til the last drop?” I was recently reminded of these expressions and my heart was full of joy.

During the holidays, I ordered two special mugs and added a personal touch with the individual’s name on each one. They didn’t come in time for Christmas but I sent them a few days later. The individual text’d me and said they loved them, and that she was “pouring a cup of joe” in her new mug. I text’d back saying, “Now you will always think of me.” She replied, “I think of you all the time. I don’t need a mug for that.”

As soon as I saw her message, my heart was full of joy at her words and we agreed to talk on the phone at a time that was convenient for her. When we did talk, I had my cup of coffee in hand. My cup has the words, “Be strong…the strength you need comes from God.” Nehemiah also reminds us of being strong and that the “joy of the Lord is our strength.”

Right now, everything is going along smoothly; but I have no doubt that my faith will be tested by life’s circumstances and that God will continually remind me that the joy we need to have in our hearts comes from Him. Joy plus an attitude of gratitude is my new motto for this coming year. It is a reminder that God is with us–that our lives matter–and that we can make a difference in others’ lives as well.

“Coffee is best served…black
…or with cream
…or with sugar
…or flavored with vanilla, chocolate,
hazelnut, peppermint, spice, etc.
…or with dessert
…or with breakfast
…or with a SMILE.”–From “Thank Heaven for Coffee and other little pleasures” by Barbour Publishing, Inc.”

May God richly bless and keep you in His loving care and enjoy your special “cup of joy” each and every day.

Blessings,
Yvonne

Coffee Quotes: Jump Start Your Day Inspirations

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Who doesn’t like a fresh cup of coffee in the morning after a long-night’s sleep? I can answer a resounding “yes” to that. Every morning like clockwork, I begin my day by making a cup of hot, brewed black coffee to wake up my mind and my soul. A time to be spent looking over the day’s list of things to do, but better yet, a time to reflect upon God’s direction and inspiration for the day.

“The Best Time of Day for Coffee Is…
…breakfast for a jump start
…mid-morning for inspiration
…lunch for good measure
…mid-afternoon for a restart
…dinner for a conversation starter
…evening for a happy ending.” Quote from: “Thank Heaven For Coffee and Other Little Pleasures.” Published by Barbour Publishing Inc.

God can speak to our hearts in a still small voice even in the midst of drinking coffee and/or tea. We just need to be aware of His presence in what we are doing at the moment.

Psalm 37:4 (NIV) says, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.”

May you feel “plugged in” to His voice today.

Blessings,
Yvonne