Coffee, Devotions, Good Morning, meditation, ministry, morning coffee, power your day, reflections

Lost, Again

Well, I lost my keys this week, again.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time that I’ve lost my keys. And to be even more transparent, I lost my ‘spare set’ of keys a couple of months ago. Those have yet to be found.

I didn’t worry ,at first, because I sort of had an idea of where the keys were. I compromised and drove my mother’s car instead of mine. It worked because her gas  tank was full and all was well until yesterday when we both needed to use her car.

So I earnestly looked for the keys again.  I went to where I thought the keys should be and they weren’t there. I moved things, re-sorted things and still, the keys were not found.

Now, I started to worry. Could I have tossed them in the trash? I was on a coffee binge on Wednesday and cleaned out my closet, I prayed the keys didn’t get caught up in those clothes.

My mother allowed me to use her car again, she rescheduled her appointment. But her tone let me know that my grace had run out. It was either find my keys or pay for a locksmith to make a new key for my car. Unfortunately, this wouldn’t have been the first time I had to do that. I really do have a tendency to lose my keys.

By evening time, I still didn’t locate the keys. There was an event I wanted to go to attend, but I didn’t want to ask to use her car. This was ridiculous. My car was sitting in the driveway for days just waiting to be driven.

Here’s the thing. My panic turned into anger. I went back through all of those clothes and literally threw things all over. I smacked a printer and it hit the floor. I banged things. Stomped around and was just about ready to curse those keys. I was ready to turn the entire house upside down. I WANTED MY KEYS!!!!!

But God…

“Go look in your pocketbook.”

I heard the Holy Spirit a few times earlier . Look in your pocketbook. I had looked several times prior, but I didn’t see the keys. I didn’t understand why in the world I was being told to look there again. It was a purse with my wallet case a couple of pens and some loose change.

“Take everything out”.

My pocketbook was in my mother’s car. By now, it was dark outside so I used the flashlight in my phone. Dumped the bag, no keys.

“Move your wallet.”

My wallet sits inside of a small black case. It’s like a purse inside of my purse. I unzipped it, took out my wallet and my keys were sitting right there. I couldn’t believe it. They were always in the right place but still they were lost.

Or imagine a woman who has ten coins and loses one. Won’t she light a lamp and scour the house, looking in every nook and cranny until she finds it? And when she finds it you can be sure she’ll call her friends and neighbors: ‘Celebrate with me! I found my lost coin!’ Count on it—that’s the kind of party God’s angels throw every time one lost soul turns to God.” Luke 15:8‭-‬10 MSG

I came back in the house, embarrassed by my behavior but happy for my prize. “I found my keys ma, they were in my pocketbook this entire time.”

This morning, Mom has her car. She is already out and about. And The Holy Spirit reminded me of how my behavior was last night. I was ready to do anything to find what was lost and recover what belonged to me.

There were times when I was in the right place yet still lost. There were times this year when I was physically in the building, but not one person there could find me in the place where my mind was.

I’ve seen my world turned upside down, just like I did to the room, just to recover and save me from the hidden places of my mind. I’ve been rescued more than once from places of sin and even places of depression.

God asked me last night, when will I be obedient and put my keys on a hook? Or am I willing to continue to lose the things that have been given to me?

Just like for my soul, am I willing to continue cycles of being lost, having to be rescued? Or will I be obedient and keep my mind on Him, follow His precepts and walk under the Blessing?

Then I had to look further. What about people who are lost? Are people as important to me as those keys? Am I willing to keep going out, witnessing and doing ministry until people have been recovered to the Kingdom? How many people do I encounter daily that are lost, but in my sight? Am I willing to put in the effort for what and who really matters?

Just some morning thoughts. I have my keys. And after my coffee I’m sure I’ll be hitting the road soon enough, in my own car. Oh wait, I still have to clean that mess I made… make that two cups (and some water).

Ayoka Boyce ~ Minister, Author, Blogger, Lover of Coffee

 

 

Coffee, Devotions, focus, Fruitful, Inspiration, ministry, morning coffee, power your day, Thursday, Uncategorized

Be Fruitful

This morning, the Holy Spirit guided me back to the beginning, the book of Genesis.

And God blessed them, saying, Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.
Genesis 1:22

I didn’t know for sure why He took me back to the beginning. Genesis 1, I can nearly recite it. Nothing new there right?

But, there was something new there, revelation.

I saw it…the first recorded words that God gave to man, “Be Fruitful”.

I never saw this command. I never realized the power given to us in those two words. And I never understood why this is where the enemy always comes to fight.

Be Fruitful – Be productive in such a way that yields positive results.

Then it was more than a command, God spoke life into us. He defined what our nature should be. “Be fruitful.”

Fruit has seed that replenishes when it is planted in fertile ground. The seed we plant, is expected to grow and not die.

The enemy will try to fight our nature to be fruitful. He tries to keep us still, stagnant, never producing anything or planting good seed in infertile ground.

Then if the enemy doesn’t keep us still, he will keep us busy being fruitful in the wrong areas of life.

Then I peeked a little further in the Word, and I saw that being fruitful comes with multiplication and growth.

And I saw that if I’m not growing then I’m not being fruitful in the manner that God wants me to be.

I am always fruitful but I don’t always acknowledge what is growing? Trouble or peace? Abundance or debt? Heartache or joy?

What areas are producing ‘fruit’? The areas that I give my time, my effort and my attention.

Quick example… I have an author page on Facebook that stayed at 81 followers for about 2 years. I never cultivated it, worked on it, so there was no fruit. Two weeks ago I placed my link on a post and got a few more followers. Then I made it a goal to hit 200. Not only did I make the goal but I exceeded it and this week’s goal is to make 300.

Okay it sounds good but my church membership has not grown. The nature of being fruitful works, but I didn’t apply it to ministry.

So what if I’m fruitful, state my goal this week, go out into the streets of Richmond VA, and introduce them to Christ? What if I put the effort into souls?

Be fruitful. That’s my command, my nature, and my result.

My thoughts this morning, coffee is already brewed. Now it’s time for me to get up and start the day being fruitful.

Ayoka Boyce, a Fruitful Minister, Blogger, and Lover of Coffee

Autumn, Coffee, Devotions, Fall, Inspiration, ministry, power your day, seasons, September

Holding on to the Leaves

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: Ecclesiastes 3:1

Happy 1st day of September. Is it me or did the seasons seem to change overnight? I saw a tree this week and its leaves were already beginning to change colors.

And I wonder..what  if the trees were unwilling to lose their leaves.

What if they rebelled against change and held onto their leaves because they wanted to hold on to their colors which draws the attention of men?

What if they said I will hold on to what I have, in spite of knowing there would not be enough water or moisture to sustain the excess?

What if the trees pushed back their assignment to make provision for squirrels and small animals with the nuts that fall to the ground?

What if they said they wanted to stay the same and did not care if there would be no room for the next period of growth in the springtime?

What if the trees that were designed to change said, I want to be like the evergreen and keep what I have?

What if the trees, did not want to sow their leaves into the ground?

What if the trunk decided it did not want to draw from the nutrients and water provided by the leaves, and decided to try to stand on it’s own strength?

What if they did this year after year, held on to the beauty on the outside while dying on the inside?

Change is inevitable. We must be willing to let go of what no longer belongs to us. We must be willing to go bare for a season in order to have life for the next season. We must recognize that God’s plan for change is to sustain us and not to kill us.

Just a few thoughts as I think of the changes that are happening in my life. I have some leaves that I need to let fall to ground. Pondering with my coffee in hand.

Enjoy your coffee and power up your day

Ayoka Boyce ~ Minister, Author, Blogger, Lover of Coffee

Ayoka Boyce 31 Writing Prompts for your Blog

Coffee, Devotions, Inspiration, ministry, power your day

4 Things I learned from Holy Week 2017

Good Afternoon and Happy Monday
I have not blogged in over a week. No excuses, I got busy, did not plan well and I dropped the ball. But I did learn some things and I am jumping back in so I can share the lessons God taught me this past week.

1. Do not abandon the assignment

I started a theme, Seven Days of Happiness. I finished up to day 4. Things got really busy, I was tired and I let it slip. It went from 1 day, to 2 days… Funny thing, I was not very happy for those days. I honestly believe that had I continued the series, I would have grasped a hold to the happiness (It is a choice and a push to maintain happiness but it is well worth it.)

Jesus was busy. He multi-tasked. Even while he was hanging from the cross, He still ministered. The assignment was never abandoned. In fact, you find him consistently reminding his disciples that he had an assignment to die.

When life, family, friends, etc deter your focus away, remind them of your assignment. It will keep everything in focus.

And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. Mark 8:31

2. The enemy will go after your heart, don’t fall for the emotional tricks

If you didn’t know, I am single, and I am okay with it. However, I did kind of meet someone and have been enjoying his company. I assumed that he knew that I was a minister, but when I mentioned it, apparently he didn’t know. The next morning, I got my walking papers by inbox (You are wonderful, but….)
No I didn’t cry or lose any sleep, but it was enough to irritate me for a few hours. I did not want to blog, post, or think about ministry. The enemy (not the person) used the occasion to go after my heart and question myself. Once I recognized real trick, I picked myself up (got intentionally happy) and went back to doing what I do. Later that afternoon, I had the opportunity to minister for the first time via a Spoken Word event and it was awesome. That evening, I did a Live Facebook of my book A Love Conversation. It had been a while since I read it myself. And at the end of the book, I remembered the purpose of the ministry God gave to me.

Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. John 14:1

3. Ministry is everywhere – We need it and we give it

How many of us give and give, but rarely sit back to receive? That is me. always on the move, always have to be doing ‘something’. Who has time to be ministered to when I have so much to do?

I started reading a book ‘Jonesing – Pseudo Love’, by Keys. I read the first chapter and had to close it. The words immediately brought me to a place that I know I still need healed from. The character in this book starts off telling about a strained relationship with her mother. That is me most of the time. Our relationship is good but strained. This weekend, we got into the nastiest argument. When I left, I slammed the door so hard, I think I was trying to make the entire house crumble. It was ugly, and all of my anger kept going back to childhood. This occurred the day after I tried to read the book.

I really must sit down and read the book, and once and for all get over these issues. Geesh, let it go already Ayoka.

Yes, the incident is over and we both apologized. (She admitted that she really did start it lol).  But I really have to take Jesus’s lead. I may have to prepare myself, but I have to deal with the past, and let God minister to what is broken.

Then Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus, and wiped His feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. John 12:3

4. Seek the Full picture for the Greatest understanding

The coolest thing happened on Friday.
So, I have been in church since childhood. I have read the gospels more times that I can think to number. But this year, for good Friday, I had a different experience.

Friday Morning, God instructed me to do a ‘timeline’ of Good Friday. I have never done so much study in such a short amount of time! Through the entire day, I searched all four Gospels. With the help of Google, posts were put so that the reader could follow the timeline. (At 12 noon EST, the post of the sun going dark and the next post was at 3pm EST when it is almost time for him to die. ) I don’t think I have ever felt the pain and the pull of Good Friday as I did this time.

There was ministry in that timeline. I can’t really describe but I invite you to read it here

And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. Luke 24:45

I am back. My prayer is that we don’t forget the passion and purpose of our assignments. Don’t abandon the ministry that God has given you to do. Enjoy your coffee and power up your day.

Ayoka ~ Minister, Blogger, Author, Lover of Coffee

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Coffee, Devotions, Inspiration, ministry, Monday, power your day, seasons

Windows and Seasons

I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. ~ John 9:4

Back in 1996, I worked for NorthWest Airlines. As a Reservation Sales Agent, I had the opportunity to relocate to Honolulu, Hawaii because the reservation office there was short staffed. My friends and family were not shocked that I jumped at the opportunity. I reasoning made perfect sense “The opportunity is here now and it will probably never be like this again. I’m out!”

Within a couple of weeks, my clothes were packed and I was sitting in a hotel room in Honolulu, looking at the ocean. Halfway across the world, in the middle of the Pacific, I was living an opportunity of a lifetime.

Today, as I was riding in the car, I thought about windows and seasons. Depending on the season, the windows in the car or the house will either be opened or closed. It is our responsibility to take full advantage of open windows of opportunities.

Jesus explained that opportunities are not everlasting. He worked within the confines of time and took full advantage of his time in ministry. For three years, he taught, he preached, he healed, he forgave, he gave hope and he loved. When he died, he did so with the purpose of redemption. To his family and friends, the age of 33 may have seemed to early to die. However, within his life on earth, he accomplished everything within the allotted window of opportunity.

17342652_10209210706400964_1689519242651985321_nI dedicate today’s blog to a beautiful young woman, Nicole ‘Nikki’ Hudson. Although we mourn her passing at a young age, we rejoice that she lived a full life. She took advantage of all of the opportunities that life presented to her. Her life was ministry, she was an author, a playwright, producer, photographer, singer, sister, daughter and friend. Those who love her, will say farewell. Our lives were truly made richer because she made use of the opportunities God placed in her life.

Live life to the fullest. Take advantage of today’s open windows of opportunity. Come tomorrow, they may not be guaranteed.

Enjoy your coffee and Power up Your Day
Ayoka Boyce ~ Minister, Author, Blogger, Lover of Coffee

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Coffee, Devotions, Inspiration, ministry, power your day, Saturday, Strongholds

This is Where it Went Wrong

And do not give the devil an opportunity [to lead you into sin by holding a grudge, or nurturing anger, or harboring resentment, or cultivating bitterness] ~ Ephesians 4:27 (Amplified Bible)

I can’t rehash this week without taking a good, hard look at myself.

Yesterday afternoon, I knew I needed to run away for a few hours. I had a full tank of gas so I drove 2 hours to Virginia Beach. I arrived at my sister-friend’s house look feeling tired and beat up. I thought that I would writie last night, but all I could do was go into a restless sleep.

This morning, God led me straight to Ephesians 4. Have you ever been ‘told-off’ of ‘read’ or ‘checked’ by someone? Well, I was checked this morning. I am not newbie. I am supposed to be mature in Christ. No matter what was going on at work, I was supposed to know better.

5 things I did wrong this week

By not doing these five things, I gave strength to the strongholds. I didn’t tearnthem down this week.

  1. I gave place to the devil. I let him whisper all kinfs of negativity in my ear and I eagerly listened. I allowed him to play on me feeling self-righteous
  2. I did not take authority over my emotions. I knew better but I allowed myself to sit in anger and pity
  3. I did not resist. I should have stopped it after one day (that is the Word). I let my anger seethe past the maximum amount of time and sure enough I left the door open for the most unimaginable feelings of self doubt, pity and depression.
  4. I did not fortify my faith. I let this tear my faith down. I was supposed to jump in the Word. I should have spent at least one night in bed with Bible and let God minister to me. My weapon was available. Note to self – My weapon is the Word of God not an angry tongue.
  5. I did not go into intercession for this. I went straight into my emotions. I identified the strongholds in my life but what about the strongholds that exist at the job. I know there are issues but I only identified the ones that directly effected me.

Now that I am awake, literally and figuraively, it is back to business. There is work to be done: blogs to write, books to write, strongholds to be torndown. Plus I have to drive back home today, two hours in the rain. I am equipping this body with the Word and a cup of coffee.

Enjoy this beautiful rainy Saturday. Power up your day with the Word (it is always good)  and a good cup of Coffee!

Ayoka Boyce ~ Minister, Author, Blogger, Lover of the Word and Coffee

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Coffee, Devotions, Inspiration, ministry, power your day, Thursday

Attitude Check

But I am in pain and distress. Let your salvation, God, protect me. ~ Psalm 69:29

I say this often, I get one day a month to feel like this – blah. Today seems to be that day. It was a fight to write the blog this morning. I have started 4 different topics this morning, but they just were not right. And God let me know that it was okay for me to write the truth. Somebody needs to hear this.

There are days that we don’t feel great. Sometimes, it is for no particular reason at all, we just feel blah. It isn’t intentional to feel this way.

But there has to be an intention to come out of the funk. I know that the longer I ‘allow’ myself to stay in this mood, the more susceptible I am to falling for the tricks of the enemy. Before I get to this point, Lord let your salvation protect me! Protect me from depression, irritation, loathing and every emotion that comes with this. Let your salvation protect me from making emotional decisions including spontaneous online shopping or choosing to eat a large unhealthy but comforting lunch. Let your salvation protect me from reverting back to old habits of drinking and self-harm. Let your salvation protect me from making phone calls to people I don’t need to be talking to…

The Psalmist David

Prior to this verse, it would appear that David was having ‘a day’. He is drowning from emotions and trouble and claimed to be exhausted from calling for help. He doesn’t seem to have a friend in the world, he is surrounded only by enemies who want to do him in. (Yes, that has been how I felt this morning) But David prayed that he not stay in that place. He switched his words of complaint and distress. He began to praise and magnify God, understanding that his complaints were not pleasing. He then changed the atmosphere around him and implored that even the heavens and earth should join him in praising God.

What a turnaround he made! The question is, what am I going to do now. I do believe, I will get my life together, and change the atmosphere around this place. If I can influence an icky mood, surely with the help of God, I can switch this mood around.

I need an afternoon cup of coffee.
Be intentionally happy! Enjoy your coffee and power up your day.

Ayoka Boyce~ Minister, Author, Blogger and Lover of Coffee

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