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Friday, August 30, 2013

Build a JOY Cathedral to the Glory of God!

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Look at it with a new perspective as you drink in the JOY of the LORD and ask Him to give you joy to make this day count for Him.

            Perspective…it’s really important and will help you to see the importance of facing each day with a fresh outlook.  When people have something to live for…to work toward…to serve the Lord with gladness…then it improves our quality of life! Our daily steps can truly make a difference in someone’s life…which adds joy to our own.

            I like the story told by Mary Southerland about the three construction workers who were all working on the same job.  Each of them was asked the same question: “What are you doing?”  The first one said, “Oh, I’m just mixing mortar.”  The second one responded, “I’m helping put up this stone wall.” But the third one excitedly answered, “I’m building a cathedral to the glory of God!” It’s all about perspective! 

            How do you face each new day?  Do you hesitantly roll out of bed, dreading what you have to do?  Or do you awaken with a fresh joy, asking God to show you His plans for the upcoming day?  Is your perspective one of anticipation about how God will use you to serve Him by helping others? If you need a little help, may I suggest that you memorize the verse in Psalm 118:24:  This is the day the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.”  That, my friend, is the way to a JOYful perspective that will make each day count.

             Let’s build a cathedral to the glory of God by asking Him to lead us through our day.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Allow God to JOYfully Order Your Steps

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Pace yourself and drink in the joy of knowing that you and God can make this day really count!

            Do you find yourself racing through the day to pack everything into your busy schedule?  OR do you pace yourself by asking God to help you prioritize and show you what HE wants you to do today?  We all have obligations and responsibilities that have to be attended to on a regular basis, but are there some things that God may truly want you to release so that you will have the time to serve in the way HE wants you to!

            Mickey Mantle once quipped, “If I had known I was going to live this long, I would have taken better care of myself.”  Anyone identify with that?  I think as we get older, we see the truth in that bit of humor. Taking care of ourselves includes finding the proper “pace” that we can handle, physically and emotionally.  It involves depending on God to show us what is truly HIS best for us and moving forward as He leads.  

            Psalm 37:23 tells us that : “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way.”  So the question we must ask ourselves: Are our steps truly “ordered by the Lord”.  Do we seek His direction and then obediently follow?  Often we are busy, busy, busy doing all kinds of good things!  We may even be receiving praise and accolades from our fellow man.  But if we are not walking in the steps of Jesus and following the direction of our Heavenly Father, then we are not making each day count for Christ.

            Let's ask God to help each of us delight in our way by allowing Him to JOYfully “order our steps”.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The JOY of JESUS is Always Fresh!

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  You never have to worry about getting a spoiled batch! The JOY of JESUS is always fresh.

            All of us have gone to the refrigerator at one time or another and found that we’ve left something in there a little too long.  Perhaps the smell gets our attention or the discoloration of the food.  If we were to eat the spoiled food or drink the sour milk, we definitely would NOT enjoy the taste.  We’d pour it out as quickly as possible.  Throw it away!  Get rid of it!

             Well, I’d like to challenge you today…and myself too…to get rid of negative words in our vocabulary.  Ephesians 4:31 tells us to “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” So often we allow situations to aggravate us, anger us to the point that we use unkind words.  We lash out at others.  That’s one form of negative communication.

            There are also negative words that we may not realize greatly affect our attitude.  We need to eliminate these kinds of words…just like when we are cleaning out the refrigerator…throw them away, pour them out, get rid of them.  Words such as:
  • I can’t
  • If only
  • I don’t think
  • I don’t have time
  • I’m afraid

John Maxwell suggests that we replace these negatives words with words like:
·        I can
·        I will
·        I know
·        I will make the time
·        I’m confident that with God’s help…

 Say it with me: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13 (Doesn’t that bring fresh JOY to your heart?)

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Set Your Mind on JOY

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Make up your mind to find the best in this new day…regardless of what happens.

            You’ve known people who seem to never be satisfied.  It’s as if they enjoy being miserable.  They complain about the weather, their food, their job….instead of thanking the Lord for another day with sunshine or rain, food to eat and the ability to get up and go to work. It’s all in the attitude. 

            There’s a story told of a very independent 92-year-old woman who had to move into a nursing home because she was no longer able to live alone.  She was legally blind and her husband of 70 years had recently passed away.  Though she would have preferred to stay in her familiar surroundings, she knew this move was what was needed at this point in her life.  On the day of the move, she waited patiently in the lobby for a long time before finally being informed that her room was ready.  As she was being escorted down the hall, the attendant described her new room to her…even to the curtains which hung on the windows.

            “I love it!” the elderly lady said enthusiastically!
            “But you haven’t even seen the room yet…Just wait!” the attendant responded.
             “That doesn’t have anything to do with it,” she replied.  “Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time.  Whether I like my room or not doesn’t depend on how the furniture is arranged.  It’s how I arrange my mind.”

             Colossians 3:2….. Set your minds on things above…Let’s arrange our minds in such a way that we are expecting the JOY of Jesus. 

Monday, August 26, 2013

Make Today JOYfully Count!

Have you had your JOY JUICE today? Make today count and drink in the JOY that the Lord has prepared specifically for you!

            I’ve just celebrated another birthday!  And I did so with thanksgiving because I’ve come to realize that each day is truly a new opportunity.  What we do with our time is up to us.  We can waste it by doing meaningless things that don’t count.  OR we can choose to allow God to use us and trust Him to open doors of purpose!

            Best selling author, John Maxwell, wrote a book entitled Make Today Count.  The subtitle sums up the book beautifully: The Secret of Your Success is Determined By Your Daily Agenda.  What is your agenda?   Are you floating along each day, just aiming toward tomorrow? Or are joyfully and purposefully striving to making a difference today?

            To quote Maxwell: “Time is an equal opportunity employer, but how we treat time is not equal.  Time is like a block of marble. Give a block of marble to an average person, and you end up with…a block of marble.  But put it in the hands of a master sculptor, and watch what happens! The sculptor looks at it with an artist’s eye.  First he makes decisions about what it will be.  Then he practices the disciplines of his craft until he has transformed lifeless stone into a masterpiece.  I believe you and I can become like that sculptor.  We can learn to become master craftsman, not of stone but of our lives.”

             Psalm 90:12: “Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”  (AND…JOY!)

Friday, August 23, 2013

God's Love Brings Abundant JOY

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  I hope your heart is filled with joy that comes from the security of knowing that GOD LOVES YOU!

            If you have been able to listen to(or read) this week’s JOY JUICE messages, you will remember that we have quoted David Jeremiah from his book Turning Toward Joy.   He writes that:

  • Humility is the ATTITUDE of love
  • Unity is the ATMOSPHERE of love
  • Diversity is the ASSIGNMENT of love
  • Intimacy is the ACTION of love
  • Today….we will discuss how Security is the AFFIRMATION of love.
 Are you secure in your relationship with God?  If you have accepted Him as your Lord and Savior, then you have no reason to doubt.  Time after time in His Word, we find verses and passages that affirm His love.  He has loved you since before time began and will love you throughout eternity. He made you “wonderfully” and is pleased with your unique personality. You are extremely important and precious to God, and He holds you in His tender loving care.

            Daily, as children of God, we can find evidences of God’s love.  Look expectantly for the blessings of JOY that He wants to be yours today.  And bask in the security of the affirmation of His love!

            When you are secure in God’s love, you will overflow with JOY and boldly share it with others.  

Thursday, August 22, 2013

I LOVE YOU! (Joyfully)

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  When you have an intimate relationship with God, you will experience joy abundantly!

            May I encourage you to read the book of Philippians?  I know many of you have read it before, but it’s only four short chapters and would be worth reading and re-reading and then reading again.  Paul is the writer and he was in prison when he penned the words.  However, this short book is known as the book of JOY!?  It’s the most personal and intimate of all the letters he wrote. Over 100 times, we see that he used the words “I”, “me” and “my”.  But not at all in a selfish way! He was passionate about his love for the Lord and openly expressed the depth of his affection.

            Paul wanted the Philippians to know of his love for God…but also his love for them!  He expressed his gratitude often….for them! “I thank my God upon every remembrance of you.”1:3   “I have you in my heart” 1:7  “I long for you all.” 1:8

            Do you think that Paul had found the key to joy?  It’s obvious that he loved God first and foremost….and that he loved his fellow Christians.  Intimacy is the “action” of love…teaches Dr. David Jeremiah.  What do you do to show that you love the Lord?  Does your heart overflow with gratitude and thanksgiving for the relationships God has given you?  Do you openly express your love for others? 

Unexpressed love is useless.  Let’s find ways to show people that we genuinely care. 

 Today, I'm thanking God for YOU!  By the way…I LOVE YOU and you bring me JOY!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013


           Have you had your JOY JUICE today? It’s for everyone…no matter who they are or stage of life! EVERYONE should “Taste and see that the LORD is good!” (Psalm 34:8)

            It’s not hard to be nice to nice people!  It’s a joy to be around those who think like we do and enjoy the same kinds of things. BUT what about those who are different? Is it as easy to love those who adopt different beliefs or disagree about certain issues?  What about that person who is continually rubbing you the wrong way?

            We must remember that God has created each person. Our diversity is a gift from Him….and though we may not have a lot in common with some people, if we will allow God to control our heart, we can be bound together by His love.

            Judson Edwards wrote a “tongue in cheek” kind of poem that truly emphasizes the need for diversity:

“If everyone was just like me…
   The world would sure be a better place to be.
          There would be no murder, for I’m not violent.
           No stealing, for I’m not a thief.
            No atheism, for I believe in God.
           No ignorance, for I’ve been to school.
If only the world was more like me…
      Surely it would be a better place to be.

   For if everyone was just like me…
         There would be no merry-go-rounds, for I get dizzy.
          No doctors, for I hate blood.
        No painters, for I’m color blind.
       No balloon riders, for I’m afraid of heights.

Come to think of it,
        If the world was just like me
       It would be an awfully boring place to be!”

                Offer the JOY of the LORD to one and all…and thank the Lord for diversity!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

The JOY of Unity

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Share some with your family, your co-workers, and your church members! It’s sure to bring a spirit of “unity”!

            "While humility is the attitude of love, UNITY is the atmosphere in which love thrives." (David Jeremiah in Turning Toward Joy)   If you belong to a family where everyone gets along and there are no disagreements, then consider yourself extremely blessed.  The same goes for working colleagues and church members.  The sad fact is….where two or more gathered….many times they disagree!  But that doesn’t have to be a bad thing.  If you love each other and deal with others IN LOVE, then you can agree to disagree.  But if we let those disagreements drive a wedge and the love turns into bitterness and resentment, then “unity” is out the window.

             Amy Carmichael wrote to her church family years ago: “Unlove is deadly. It may kill slowly, but it always kills in the end.  Let us fear it, fear to give room to it as we should fear to nurse a cobra.  It is deadlier than any cobra…One drop of the gall of unlove in my heart or yours, however unseen, has a terrible power of spreading all through our Family, for we are parts of one another!”

             How true! AND where there is not love, there is not JOY.  Humility is the attitude of love, but unity is the atmosphere that must be present in order for love and joy to thrive.

            Are you willing to humble yourself and get rid of the “unlove” in your heart?  Only then can we experience the JOY of unity with our fellow brothers and sisters.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Move Toward JOY

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  The joy found in a relationship with Jesus is available to all.

            In a book I’ve been reading by David Jeremiah, I have found such insight regarding joy no matter what our circumstances.  The title of the book is Turning Toward Joy.  (Are you surprised? I can’t get enough!)

            Dr. Jeremiah leaps immediately into subjects like “humility” and “unity”, “diversity”, “intimacy”, and “security”. Can joy be found in each of these? Yes…because all are conditions of the heart.  And that is where JOY is planted, nurtured and developed. Let’s talk first about HUMILITY---the attitude of LOVE, as the author puts it.

             “Humility is not thinking less of yourself; it’s thinking of yourself less.” (C.S. Lewis) Philippians 2:5 says, “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.”  What was His attitude?  One of love, humility and service. In verse 3 of that same chapter, Paul writes, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but IN HUMILITY consider others better than yourselves.”

            Selfish ambition can tear down…but genuine humility builds up! Being humble has a lot to do with how we see ourselves before God.  WE ARE SINNERS, saved only by God’s grace.  Let’s lay aside selfishness and treat others with respect and common courtesy. If we will put others' needs before our own, then we are linking ourselves to Christ…who is the truest example of HUMILITY!
( Paraphrased from NIV Life Appl. Bible footnote Philip. 2:3)

             Let’s humble ourselves before God and look for ways to serve JOY to others!


Friday, August 16, 2013

Oh, the Love and JOY Found in Christ!

            Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  As hard as you try, you can never measure the blessings that will come from joyfully following Christ!

            Why do Christians choose to follow Christ?  Because we love Him! Why do we love him?  Because He first loved us! God’s love cannot be measured! It is indescribable, unlimited, sacrificial and unconditional.  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16
That kind of love is beyond human understanding! As Romans 11:33 says so well: “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out.”

            We could say a multitude of things about God’s unending love, but I think one of the most important and powerful passages of truth might be the one found in Romans 8:38-39:

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

            Accept God’s love today and experience a peace and joy that cannot be measured! That’s an abundant serving of JOY that will never run out!

            Drink in the love and joy of Jesus, confident that He will cover us, lead us and bless us!


Thursday, August 15, 2013

Follow THE Leader...with JOY! HE Leads in Triumph!

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  It’s what we need when we’re feeling  discouraged and begin to think like a loser!

            Let me begin today’s message by clarifying….God’s children are NOT losers!   2 Corinthians 2:14 tells us:  But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.”

            It is true that without Him, we are nothing!  But that’s not the same thing as being a loser! Because of His unending, compassionate love for us, we can depend on Him leading us IN TRIUMPH.  The key here…He’s willing to lead but we must be willing to FOLLOW! And as we follow, trusting Him and reflecting His presence, then the “sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him” will go with us. 

            Let that truth sink in and may your “loser” thoughts be transformed as you allow God to renew your thinking.  May the sweet aroma of Jesus go before us, with us and linger after we leave.  Let’s put a smile on our face and stand straight and tall, knowing that we are His children and representatives of the family of God.  That makes you the opposite of a loser!  You, my friend, are a champ! So run today’s race…as well as tomorrow’s and all those to come…with confidence.  He is ALWAYS leading us in triumph in Christ.

            I joyfully encouraging you to follow in His footsteps and you will find yourself on the sweet smelling path of JOY!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

God is Always JOYfully "On Call"

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  No matter how tired or weary you may be, God will always be there to give you strength.
            This week we’ve been talking about some to the things God can’t do! One of those things is….He cannot grow weary and tired!  He is all-powerful.  And because of His power and goodness and love, He is “on call” at all times.  We are told in Isaiah 40:28-31: 

   Do you not know?
    Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
    they will run and not grow weary,
    they will walk and not be faint.

            Just reading this passage has a strengthening effect on me!  What about you?  Are you tired…maybe even exhausted before you even begin some days?  Then start  with a boost of God’s strength by reading passages of scripture like this one.  Let The Word saturate your thoughts and your heart as you soak in the Truth of His power and love.  Though our strength is limited, we have access to the most powerful source there is….the JOY JUICE of JESUS!

           Get ready to run and not grow weary as you accept the strength freely given by our everlasting God!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Time To Drink in the JOY of the LORD!

            Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  You can’t stop the JOY from coming when you enjoy a personal relationship with God!

            Years of tight scheduling on the job and the necessity to make every minute count helped to make me a very “time conscious” gal! I like to be punctual; and I expect events and appointments to start on time.  I will admit that sometimes I can be a little too rigid.  I’ve had to learn to be more flexible, but I still like things to go according to my plans.

            Let me tell you one the thing God “CANNOT” do….He cannot  be put on our time schedule! His timing is NOT the same as ours…and that’s kind of a challenge for people like me!  I’d like to order my requests and have them fulfilled WHEN I think is best! Oh, me! That is not how God works, is it?!

            Acts 1:7: “And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.”

            WELL!  It is NOT for US to know the times…..So what do we do?  We simply TRUST!  His ways are higher than our ways and we must trust that His timing is so much better than ours.  For example, when we have prayed and prayed, asking God for a certain heart’s desire and it seems as if he is not listening…..we should remember His faithfulness, recall His goodness and reflect His love. 

            Lots of things I do NOT know, but  I’m pretty sure that God’s timing for drinking his JOY JUICE is  RIGHT NOW!

Monday, August 12, 2013

God Can't! (HUH???) So Let's Be JOYful! :)

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  The JOY of the Lord helps you to understand that you can trust Him completely!

            A few years ago, I picked up a little book by Maisie Sparks entitled 101 Things God CAN’T Do.  The title intrigued me and put me somewhat on the defensive! How could this author imply such a thing?!  “THERE IS NOTHING MY GOD CAN’T DO!”

            But as I thumbed through the first few pages, it soon became clear what this author meant.  And how right she is!  She said: 

·        God can’t lie.
·        God can’t be given a problem that he can’t solve.
·        God can’t stop loving you.

Throughout the pages of this book, the writer listed one thing another that God can’t (or won’t) do.  And each one was backed by scripture. 

          The bottom line is that God loves us supremely. And though He CAN do everything and anything, sometimes He chooses not to…..for our sakes.  He is all knowing; He is TRUTH; He is righteous and pure.  He is sinless.  But we are NOT.

            We are works in progress!  And God won’t leave a work unfinished!  Philippians 1:6 reminds us, “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”  What JOY that should bring to us!  God continues to mold us and polish us so that one day we will be a beautiful masterpiece of HIS handiwork!

            God CAN’T give up on you, so drink your special serving of JOY JUICE and face the new day boldly!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Trust and (JOYfully) Obey

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Trust me….it’s really good for you!

            Do you find it difficult to trust? You may, if you’ve been hurt by someone in the past.  But always remember that, in contrast to people, GOD can always be trusted.  Over and over again in the book of Psalms, the writers encourage us with verses reminding us to trust in God.

     Psalm 32: 21 says:  Our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name.” Did you get that:  Our heart shall REJOICE…why?????? Because we have TRUSTED in His Holy Name!!!!!

            And then verse 12 in chapter 2 says: “Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.”  Do you want to be BLESSED?  Do you want to experience JOY?  I certainly do!  Then, we must TRUST IN HIM!  No one can do it for us….this is a decision we must each make---individually.  Oswald Chambers writes:

"No one can tell us where the shadow of the Almighty is; we have to find it for ourselves. When by obedience we have discovered where it is, we must abide there-“ (trust God no matter what). (Bringing Sons unto Glory, 1943 by Oswald Chambers)

When we do this, the JOY of the Lord becomes our strength!

            So as the old hymn says: Trust and obey for there’s no other way, to be happy in Jesus…but to trust and obey!

            Drink your JOY JUICE faithfully as you trust the Lord and share His JOY with others!

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Give Thanks to the Lord...for He is JOYfully Good!

            Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  I can promise--you’ll be thankful you did!

            The beautiful book of Psalms frequently addresses the subject of “thankfulness”.   One of my favorite passages is Psalm 118.  This chapter begins and ends with the same words: “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.”

            God’s love is unchanging in the midst of changing circumstances.  This should give us a sense of security and peace.  And isn’t that what everyone is searching for today….peace!

            We have so much for which to be thankful.  God has a personal interest in each one of us.  Not only does He protect, guide and forgive us, He is our provider, our comforter, our Rock of salvation. 

            How often do you thank God?   Is it something that you do regularly?  Or do you take for granted many of the blessings that He continually pours out on you?  If we’re not careful, we focus on all that we don’t have instead of all the things that we do.  God knows us better than we know ourselves; and that includes what we truly need.  Do you trust Him completely to satisfy those needs….in His perfect timing?
Here’s a JOYful reminder that will help you to live an abundant life:

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever!”
This is Joyce Ashley of JoyJoy Ministries reminding you to thank God for His unchanging love.  It’s what JOY in the Lord is all about!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

"Have Mercy On Me, O Lord.....and Bring JOY!"

          Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  You forgot?  Well, I forgive you!!

            It doesn’t take long, when reading the book of Psalms, to see that it contains many intense prayers asking God for forgiveness.  One such prayer is found in the 86th Chapter: “Have mercy on me, O Lord, for I call to you all day long.  Bring joy to your servant, for to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.  You are forgiving and good, O Lord, abounding in love to all who call to you.”

            Each one of us has done things for which we need forgiveness…don’t you agree?  We have made poor choices that have hurt others; we have broken God’s commandments; we have been disobedient.  Without God’s forgiveness, our lives will be miserable….the opposite of JOYful!

            I was setting up tables for a family reunion not long ago and I noticed that some of the tables had marks and stains on them.  But I had a plan! I put bright, colorful table cloths on them and covered them up.  During the event, not one person noticed the ugly, marred tables because all they could see were the pretty tablecloths!  Did you know that GOD promises to cover our sins? If we repent and ask his forgiveness, His cover will make us look beautiful. 

As Psalm 103:12 tells us, "as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us."   God’s great love, mercy and grace will fill us with His JOY!

Ask God for the forgiveness you need today and enjoy a delicious serving of JOY JUICE that will refresh you and make you like a new creation!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

PRAISE Him with Shouts of JOY!

Have you had your JOY JUICE today? When we read from the book of Psalms, we find reason after reason to be JOYful!
            Pick up your Bible and turn to the center; there you’ll find the book of Psalms.  This book is a beautiful collection of prayers and songs.  David and the other writers openly and unashamedly poured out their true feelings.  When we read attentively, we  notice that their words reflect a deep love for God and a life-changing relationship with Him. “The Psalmists confess their sins, express their doubts and fears, ask God for help in times of trouble, and they praise and worship him.”  (Life Ap. Bible intro to Psalms)

            Today let’s talk about “PRAISE”!  Psalms includes many songs of praise to God as our Creator, our Sustainer, our Redeemer!  Do you know what PRAISE is….it’s recognizing, appreciating and expressing God’s greatness.

            Focusing our thoughts on God is important because it moves us to want to praise Him.  The more we know him, the closer we will draw to Him and the more we can appreciate what He has done for us!  This fills our hearts with JOY and gratitude…which leads to PRAISE!

            Shout for JOY to the Lord, all the earth,”  Psalm 100 instructs.

            As we go along our way today, let’s focus on God and His greatness.  Before we know it, we may be singing a song of JOYful praise!

           Praise Him! Praise Him….all you JOYful people!

Monday, August 5, 2013

FIVE Years of JOY JUICE! :)

Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  I’m bubbling over with JOY, because today marks the 5-year anniversary of our JOY JUICE radio ministry!

            Five years ago our first radio segment was aired and if one thing has been evident….it’s God’s faithfulness!  He has been faithful to send loyal listeners, a host of encouragers, a wonderful producer who sacrificially gives of his time and talents; generous sponsors and radio stations willing to carry the progam…all of which/whom I am so very appreciative! Without these wonderful people that God has brought into my life, JOY JUICE would not be possible!

            Do you realize how blessed YOU are by the people God has brought along side of you? Whether it’s family members, colleagues on the job, or good friends who are always there to believe in you and tell you what you need to hear…each one is a blessing from God.  Even those “sandpaper people” (as Mary Southerland calls them) who rub us the wrong way, could be God’s gift to polish us in areas of our life that are a little “rough”.

            On the other side of this “joy picture”, let’s consider how we might be influencing others.  We can build up or we can tear down. Our words can encourage or they can discourage.  Our actions and reactions are being watched by people, even when we are unaware!  (Are they learning how to live a Godly life by following our example?)

            Strive to be a JOY-filled role model to others.  And let’s continually praise God for placing special people in our lives.

            As Psalm 9: 1-2 says: “I will praise you, O Lord, with all my heart; I will tell of your wonders. I will be glad and REJOICE in you.”

            THANK YOU for sharing JOY JUICE with me for the past 5 years. Please pray for direction on this JOYful JOURNEY!!!


Friday, August 2, 2013

A Good Thing Called JOY

           Have you had your JOY JUICE today?  Hope it tastes really GOOD!

            What is your definition of “good”?  One dictionary states that good means: "Being positive or desirable in nature; not bad."  When we talk about a good book or a good movie, it’s a matter of who is giving their opinion.  What might be good to me, might not be good to you.  “Good” is subjective to the opinion of the person doing the “judging”.

            This week we’ve been posing the question: “Why do bad things happen to good people?” Maybe a better question would be “Why does God allow good things to happen to bad people?” Romans 5:8 declares, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Despite the sinful nature of the people of this world, God still loves us. He loved us enough to take the penalty for our sins.

          Often we don’t understand why certain things happen. But  we must never forget that God has a plan….. whether or not we understand  it. Above all we must remember that God is just, loving, and merciful. When things happen to us and we wonder “why”…..instead of doubting God's goodness, our reaction should be to trust Him. Trusting the Lord wholeheartedly leads to a life where “the JOY of the Lord is our strength!”

Trust Him and practice JOY! That is a “good” thing for all of us to do!