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3 More Ways to Fill A Mug with Encouragement

A Cup of Encouragement
The sooner we stop believing the lie that we must offer some grand gesture to make a difference, the sooner more souls will find rest⎯the kind of rest a good, good Father desires for His children.

Maybe you remember the above quote from last month’s post? It was there I first mentioned the idea of sharing a small {but meaningful} gift with someone in need⎯be it spiritually, emotionally, or physically.

So let’s look at three more ways we can fill a simple mug to the glory of God!


3 Ways to Fill A Mug With Encouragement

 

Be still and know that I am God __ Psalm 46_10

My love of mugs began way back when in a yellow-clad kitchen where my grandmother savored her morning cups of Yuban coffee served up in a thick-rimmed Homer Laughlin coffee cup. You might remember those cups from roadside diners or Howard Johnson motels back in the 60’s. These coffee cups with heft can still be spotted in local antique shops and estate sales. If this isn’t an option any thicker mug will do.

Here’s the question: Who are you praying for on a regular basis these days? Consider inserting a note inside a mug that says something like…Every time you sip from this gift, remember that just as this mug surrounds your coffee, my prayers surround you. You are loved, never forgotten. {Psalm 125:2}

 

Be still and know that I am God __ Psalm 46_10-1

Got a new neighbor? Go ahead and bake up those chocolate chip cookies but this time, stack them and place in a mug of your choosing, along with a simple note welcoming them to your neighborhood. Awhile back, I shared in this post how a friend of mine, Kim Rhodes, displays Christ in such an organic, authentic way by loving her neighbors well. Because summertime isn’t a friend to chocolate, you’ll want to drop this off when your neighbor is at home. It will also give you a chance to personally welcome them!

 

Be still and know that I am God __ Psalm 46_10-2

Who couldn’t use a God-kiss from time-to-time? Okay, God didn’t manufacture them but Hershey’s did, and we know all good things come from Him. {Pardon the stretch.} Nevertheless, we all know someone who could use an edible tangible reminder that God is with them right there, in the thick of their problem. Fill up a mug with Hershey’s chocolate kisses along with this note:

God Kisses
Taste and see that the LORD is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him! Psalm 34:8

Each time you take a kiss be reminded of God’s goodness… and name each one aloud.

For all of the above mug ideas, remember to encourage the recipient to pass it on. But most importantly, stay sensitive to the Spirit’s leading. He may want to change it up…and if so, to God be the glory!

Is there one of the three above ideas that resonates with you today? Or do you have additional ideas to share? If so, please share in the comment section. Thank you!

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Re-Booting Our Quiet Time in 2016

by Cathy Baker
It is of no use for you to attempt to sow out of an empty basket, for that would be sowing nothing but the wind. -Spurgeon

I’ve attempted to sow from an empty basket for longer than I ever imagined possible. One day turned into two, and those melted into three, then four.

Maybe you can relate?

His voice slips into the background of our days. That is, until we need to hear from Him the most, and it’s then, in that quiet moment, we realize just how empty our basket really is—void of His power, strength, and wisdom.

“Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it.”

Perhaps I’m not the only one in need of a fresh start when it comes to spending time with God.

If not, I invite you to join me in asking God for a teachable spirit as we spend this month immersing ourselves in learning (or re-learning?) what it means to be still and know that He is God.

After all, if we keep doing what we’re doing, we’re going to keep getting what we’re getting.

Not sure about you, but I don’t want to settle for anything less than God’s best for me. Too often in 2015 I went to gather encouragement, soul-keeping rest, and love for the unlovely from my basket only to come up empty. I was spent, discouraged, and distracted.

While we can’t do anything to make God love us more (or less), we can draw near to Him through His Word, in prayer, and simply being still in recognition of who He is.

His nearness fills the emptiest of baskets.

Hope you’ll join me this month as we’ll peek into the quiet times of some of my dearest and most Father-loving friends every Monday. On Wednesdays, we’ll consider additional ideas to spur on our time with the Father.

Welcome to the January series, Drawing Near to God. It is a blessing to have you here.

 

 

Funny What A Few Flowers Will Do

by Cathy Baker

Sunshine warms the body but
encouragement 
warms the soul. 
 
E-N-C-O-U-R-A-G-E-M-E-N-T
We were enjoying a meal, my friend and me. Well, maybe enjoying isn’t the right word. She was struggling to come to grips with possible changes in her life and I was struggling for the right words to say. 
And then it happened. Joe, an older gentleman whose family once attended church with ours, approached our table out of nowhere and handed each of us a bouquet of flowers. 
The hands that offered us the flowers were Joe’s—the heart that prompted them, however,
 was God’s. 
Joe bought flowers that morning having no idea how greatly God would use them to encourage a person he didn’t even know. He simply felt prompted to buy and share them with others. 
Who could use a little encouragement in your sphere of influence this week? 
After all, it’s funny what a few flowers will a do. 

Why Everyone Needs An Encouragement Folder

by Cathy Baker

I remember the day I created my Encouragement Folder. I’d not been writing very long when my mom surprised me by emailing her friends and family a copy of something I’d done. Soon afterwards, she forwarded a response she’d received from her cousin, Marie, to me.

As I read Marie’s email, the words soon became murky for all the tears. You see, just one day prior, I’d asked God for specific confirmation concerning my writing. Because Marie took the time to share words of encouragement, one wobbly kneed writer became strengthened. 

This week, I had a similar experience and was once again reminded of why everyone needs an Encouragement Folder. Writers, mothers, employees, ministry leaders, _______, etc. Fill in the blank because it’s a fact that you’ll be stirred up (Hebrews 10:24), strengthened (Acts 15:32), and grace-filled (Ephesians 4:29) if you’re the recipient of divine encouragement. It’s no wonder the enemy attempts to snatch up such a powerful stirring! 

Enter, the Encouragement Folder. If When you receive a word of encouragement that stimulates you spiritually, act on it immediately. Jot it down or record it either online or in a snazzy folder (see above!) You may be surprised by how God uses another person’s words from years ago to stir you towards the future. 

Consider how to stir up one another to love and good works. Hebrews 10:24
So, here’s the pressing question: How can we help others fill up their folders? The word “consider” means to turn over in one’s mind. Encouraging others oftentimes requires thought. I have much to learn but here’s how turning it over works itself out in my mind:
1. Pray. I ask the Lord to help me see others with His eyes. He alone knows the deepest needs of those He places around us on any given day. 
2. Observe. I’ve prayed to see, I believe He will answer. Now, I watch and observe how He leads. 
3. Obey. Sometimes I feel certain of the person whom God wants me encourage or what the person may need (someone to pray with, a note, a hug, help in some tangible way, etc.) but this isn’t always the case. And that’s okay. God’s got it! I simply need to be obedient to what I sense God is leading me to do and then trust Him with the results.
How about you? Whose Encouragement Folder will expand today because we took the time to write them words of encouragement?
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, 
just as you are doing.1 Thessalonians 5:11

When Encouragement Travels in a Teacup

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