Naps, Coffee Shops and Jesus

We are having a cool cloudy day here which makes me think of one of my favorite activities-taking a nap. Taking a nap ranks close to hanging out at the coffee shop for me. But since my car STILL is not ready, I am at home, so it looks like taking a nap will win out today.

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It actually fits well in my new semi retirement schedule. I have kind of fallen into a routine of sleeping until 4am, waking up to write for a while, and then going back to sleep for three or four more hours. The difference for me between a few months ago and now is that a few months ago I would often wake up around three or four am and then not be able to sleep much more. It is part of living with chronic illness waking up to pain, but now I know I can sleep some more when that happens. The only thing that is different is I am teaching only in the afternoons and evenings, which suits this night owl just fine.

While I have no doubt that Jesus would hang out in the coffee shop I go to due to the fact that he hung out with ‘sinners’ when he was on earth, we do not have record of coffee shops in the bible. We do, however, have record of Jesus taking a nap.

In Matthew 8:23-26 we read:

 Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”

He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

Jesus was sleeping in the boat in the middle of the storm. That alone amazes me. I have taken naps when there is a thunderstorm but I have been in my bed in my home, so no danger for me. Jesus was in the boat with his disciples out on the Sea of Galilee. The boat would have been rocking and perhaps taking on water.

What really amazes me is what Jesus did after they woke him up. He rebuked the storm and all was calm. Jesus has authority over nature. Imagine being there in the boat and seeing it happen.

So a nap today, but sadly no coffee shop that is unless they call me to tell me my car is ready.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

A No Doctors Week-Knock On Wood :)

It is Friday and a realization came to me this morning. With the weekend ahead of me, and with hopes of not jinxing it, this is the first week of no doctors since November. No doctors and next week is Spring Break, so I have a full week of relaxation ahead of me. No doctors may not sound like a big deal to you, but after the past several months it is a big deal for me.

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Speaking of Spring Break, I feel the coffee shop calling me for some serious hang out time. Next week will be all about finishing my two books and getting ready to publish. That is my whole agenda for next week.

Back to the no doctors thing. I am grateful Jesus has given me strength to continue teaching and continue my ministry these past months. I can’t imagine living with chronic illness without Jesus. I do not want to imagine life without Jesus.

Just this morning I spent time thanking Jesus for how he changed my life. I was praying over my afternoon class at the Ukrainian church and for the needs of my Ukrainian friends when the thought hit me of how teaching in places like the Ukrainian church would have seemed impossible before I knew Jesus.

The weekend is upon us. For me it is full steam ahead with no doctors. What is your weekend agenda?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

I Know It Is Only Chocolate-But….

Chocolate is perhaps my second favorite substance after coffee. I especially love dark chocolate. Chocolate ice cream is my favorite dessert. Having a gluten free chocolate cupcake while drinking coffee at the coffee shop is one of life’s simple pleasures. So when I saw there is a recent controversy over a chocolate company’s new chocolate bar campaign, I was disheartened. I know it is only chocolate, but it is what it all represents.

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I am old enough to remember when a child could buy ten chocolate bars for one dollar and the chocolate bars were just as big as they are today. Now chocolate bars cost a dollar or more. Sad state of affairs. When I was eleven, I would cut the grass for some elderly neighbors. They would pay me three whole dollars. I would spend one dollar on chocolate bars, one dollar on bubble gum with baseball or football card inside, and put one dollar in my piggy bank. Wise economics I know.

It was my special moment after cutting their grass to ride my bicycle to the neighborhood store for my shopping expedition to get my treasures then ride my bike home to hide my treasure before going to the swimming pool.

So I know it is only chocolate but it is what it represents. It means something encroaching on childhood yet again.

With all of this rush to promote an agenda, children are losing out on just being allowed to be children. Children need and deserve to have their innocence protected.

So I know it is only chocolate, but it is what it represents. What do you think?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Happy To Report-My Coffee Shop Is Still Open

Yesterday was eventful. A momentous occasion took place. Your coffee purist stopped by his favorite coffee shop and discovered it is has not closed in his absence.

It was a day of getting things done as in run errands, so I did not have time to hang out in my beloved coffee shop, but I did stop in the get a cup to go. There were some gluten free chocolate cupcakes and considering all I have been through, it seemed appropriate to buy one as well. 🙂

The baristas were blessed and grateful to hear some of my jokes or at least that’s what I tell myself.

Hopefully there will be time for a hangout at my coffee shop, or as David of calls it-my office- this weekend.

This semi-retirement thing of not teaching in the mornings has yet to prove to me it is worth it. My thoughts were to spend more time writing and hanging out at the coffee shop, but my body has had different ideas forcing me to spend more time at home recovering from things like minor heart procedures, pericarditis and pneumonia. But there is still time to realize the vision. 🙂

The vision for the future is to continue to share Jesus and his love with people through writing, teaching, and hopefully speaking. Of course coffee shop hangouts are part of the deal too. 🙂

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Effects of Medication- A Dream and A Few Questions in My Mind

I had another ER visit yesterday because my lungs were not clearing up enough. It was only a four hour visit this time. They gave me an injection of steroids and a new prescription for oral steroids for ten days.

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The steroid injection caused me to have interesting dreams. One was of me thanking Jesus repeatedly while the Rapture of the Church was happening. As I was in route during the rapture along with the millions of other believers, all I could say was, “Thank you Jesus”

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Then when we returned to earth with Jesus I loved spending time at the coffee shop with those who were born after the Second Coming so I could share about Jesus with them.

My lungs are clearing up finally, so it is off to church this morning. I wonder if it is okay to sing during worship with the unfair advantage of taking performance enhancing drugs-steroids. :

I don’t think I will get any calls about football recruiting, however, due to the fact that I graduated from university many years ago, so I do not have any eligibility left for sports.

So as you can tell, the creative thought process is returning as is my humor. Normal for me is perhaps not so normal. 🙂

So it’s off to worship service today and perhaps even a visit to the coffee shop this afternoon after several days of no visits there. I hope they didn’t go out of business in my absence.

Thank you for reading.. God Bless.

On The Mend-Coffee Time

Can you guess where I am now? If you said the coffee shop, you would be correct. I made it out for a while after being cooped up for most of the week I am finally on the mend and have a it of energy. But I am so behind on my blog and fellow bloggers after a week of mostly only laying in bed. It is time to catch up.

This week will be warmer in my area. I know that others in my state like Alicia of have a lot of snow that needs to melt away, but not in my city. It will be in the 50f/10c most of the week or a bit warmer. That amounts to a heat wave in these parts. Brenda of is loving the winter weather in her area. How is winter in your area? I hesitate to ask because I know that Gary of thrives on winter, ice fishing, etc. Then there is David of who lives in southern climate and misses out on all of the fun. He is probably enjoying a picnic today. 🙂

Just giving shout outs to a few friends.

Back to my coffee outing. I must still be a bit spacey because guess who forgot to bring his wallet? Yes I did. I must have something like frequent flyer miles because the barista told me not to worry and let me have a cup with a refill free of charge saying that I am in here a lot.

I was thinking today about memories. We all have those memories we beat ourselves up with of past failures and sins. There are two verses that come to mind that I think should shape how we talk to ourselves.

Hebrews 8:12 says:

“For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.”

If God does not remember our sins against us, why beat ourselves up for past failures. Learn from them yes, but let the memories of them drag us down, NO.

Hebrews 6:10 says:

 “God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”

What God does remember are the work we do and love we show in his name towards others. This shows me what we should focus on-the here and now and living for Jesus letting God take care of those memories.

It feels good to be at my coffee shop and to have the tangible reminder about memory. Maybe it is a good thing that I forgot my wallet. 🙂

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Surgery Tomorrow

Tomorrow is the day I will have my ablation procedure. I will check in at 5am and the procedure will happen at about 8am. It is outpatient and I should return home about noon. The procedure involves threading a catheter through an artery to the heart to burn a spot in my heart. It is supposed to stop the heart flutter I developed.

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I was not planning on taking time off from my afternoon and evening classes, but the director of the college’s ESL program encouraged me to take Monday and Tuesday off. Hopefully I won’t get bored. 🙂

I will bring my laptop bag with me with my Chromebook and iPad mini inside just in case they decide to keep me overnight. I am convinced that if I do not bring them with me, they will keep me overnight and if I do they won’t. So I will bring them with me. I am certain there is a cause effect thing in play.

So off to church this morning and then the coffee shop to meet a friend in a whirlwind of activity the day before. I am confidant Jesus will bring me through it.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Coffee Time-Helping A Woman In Trouble

Yesterday evening after my Friday English class at the Ukrainian church, I was joined for coffee by my friends Alex, Ruslana and their daughter Ester at a coffee shop in my city called Telegraph Mill. The barista who helped us was kind to my friends, so I shared with her that they are from Ukraine. I found out she is an education major currently student teaching at a school that has a few Ukrainian children.

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While I was enjoying coffee with my friends, the barista came to our table to ask if I speak Spanish. A woman in the coffee shop needed help. I went over the her table and spoke with her in Spanish. The poor woman did not know her address or a phone number to call for family. She seemed confused. My suggestion was to call the police hoping an officer who speaks Spanish would come.

Two officers came but they did not speak Spanish, They asked me to translate. The poor woman had a difficult time tracking with any conversation. They asked me to ask her if they could take her to our People’s City Mission. She agreed. It was a relief she agreed because the People’s City Mission will know how to help her.

Such moments of interaction, of showing a bit of kindness, are part of why I am so grateful Jesus has led me to my ministry and work. It is also why I am grateful he led me to study Spanish thirteen years ago.

Jesus knows our future and how it all fits together. He knows how we are wired. When he prompts us to do something, there might not be immediately visible reasons, but we trust in him remembering the truth of Ephesians 2:10:

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

Her First Friday in America

Yesterday afternoon in my English class in the Ukrainian church, we had a new person join our class. She is a twenty three year old woman who arrived less than a week ago. She is living with her aunt who has been here for a while. She was already in the room because her aunt is the one who opens the door to the church for us.

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After class, some of us went out for coffee and she joined us. We talked about the class and how she felt. She shared that she felt shy and nervous at first. One of the things I do in class to make it fun is to throw Hershey’s kisses to them. She shared that helped her to relax.

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Ester, the young woman who received the violin a few months ago, sat next to our new person during class. Ester and her parents joined us at the coffee shop and talked a lot with our new person. A new friendship was formed.

Our new person smiled and laughed with us at the coffee shop. Less than a week ago, she was in the refugee camp in Poland. Some months ago, she fled the war in Ukraine. Now she is living with her aunt in my city and has already made new friends.

At the end of class, I asked my friend Alex, who is a pastor from Ukraine, to pray for her. She knows Jesus and he is helping her with her new life in America.

Thank you for reading. God Bless.

A No Alarm Clock Day :)

It is Tuesday evening and both the school system for elementary to high school in my city and the college I teach at have announced classes canceled for Wednesday due to a winter storm coming. That means no morning, afternoon or evening classes for me to teach and Wednesday will be a No Alarm Clock Day. 🙂

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What are my plans for such a momentous occasion you might ask? Good question.

After waking up whatever time that happens, first things first coffee time at home. Coffee time at home means listening to worship music while spending time with Jesus and enjoying a few cups of coffee.

Then it will be time to catch up on blogging. I am regretfully behind. I look forward to catching up with my fellow bloggers.

As if coffee time with Jesus and blogging are not enough of a whirlwind of a day, I have a feeling it will be time to visit Middle Earth again. Yes, that means watching Lord of the Rings. I have the extended release ones for each of the three movies, so that will give me over ten hours of Tolkien entertainment.

That’s my agenda for this Wednesday. What are your plans?

Thank you for reading. God Bless.