Why Make God Known Coffee?
First of all, we are NOT selling our coffee for profit. We sell our signature coffee that we created while owning our own coffee shop to be obedient to God's voice. You see it all began when I (Jen) learned to put my priorities in God's order by putting my daughter first before making money.
At the time I was working as a coffee barista making an average of $100.00 a day in just tips. God had challenged me to put my daughter as a priority and to do so I had to switch my shifts around to be at home with her more before school instead of dropping her off at daycare. Doing so however made my tips go from $100.00 a day to only $3.00 a day.
I was so discouraged about this one day and totally bored waiting to clock out after doing everything ahead of schedule with no customers to serve, that I asked God why? Why did God ask me to give up my morning shift to be home with Emily more when He know I was a single mom at the time and needed the income. The answer to my why was a still small voice I heard say as clear as day, "To learn to do this, to use it to pour into the ministry I will show you."
The "this" was running the coffee shop I was now in charge of instead of just being a coffee barista. It was learning all the in's and out's of the business so that when the day came when God would literally give us the very same business, I would know how to run it. Not only that, after owning our own coffee shop 10 years later, God showed me the ministry He wanted us to use the coffee to pour into. The very church He has now called us to plant He had also spoken to me about when He spoke to me to sell our coffee shop to go into "full time ministry".
Since then, God has showed me that His coffee is to MAKE HIM KNOWN, to raise money for ministry, and not just our church here at Legacy, but the ministries we support. The first ministry God showed me was Operation Ignite Light whom we partner with to raise the funds needed to purchase backpacks full of everything a child needs their first night away from home, after being pulled from abuse or neglect.
This same ministry that our MGK Coffee supports is now partnering with Legacy Church to donate to us 100 backpacks to give to 100 children here in the Anchorage area. Since our experience as foster parents ourselves, God has spoken to me to begin a ministry called Kings Kids to help foster parents pay for the essential items children need coming into their home as well. This ministry has not began as of yet, but I know in God's perfect timing He will provide for us to do so through the coffee He gave to us to fund it in the first place.
We have done all this through acts of obedience and continued trusting in God as the heavenly father He is! By our continued obedience to give what He has given to us we help children in need in the foster care system as He shows us. It may not seem like a lot to you, but every time you purchase MGK Coffee and enjoy it, your purchase goes to support the ministry God has laid on our hearts, and YOU ARE PART OF IT!
So that's the Why MGK Coffee, if you would like some MGK Coffee yourself follow the link below:
When I first asked Jesus into my life, God challenged me to wait for the man he would send me instead of searching for someone myself. To wait for a man who would pursue me with the character of God and cherish me as God calls him to cherish and love his wife. Someone who would be governed by the vary nature of God in how he lived his own life for God to use to pursue me through him.
This was all VERY new for me, and something to be honest I had not observed in others relationships yet at this time in my life. I just knew I heard my heavenly Father's voice challenging me to trust Him with this area of my life. I just didn't realize God knew what I wanted and needed better than I knew myself, until my husband Travis came along.
You see when I first met Travis he actually annoyed me. We met in Bible College in our Old Testament class. He was the guy that threw paper balls at me in class from the back row, as I sat in the front row with a 4.0 GPA that semester as a single mom. (Side note, even God knew that too would be something God would pursue me in through Travis as he graduated with a higher GPA than I did in the end.)
What began as an annoyance slowly grew into a friendship I loved, and it made me want more of it everyday. But yet while walking across campus one day and being told that Travis liked me I was still so uninterested in him as more than a friend that my first response to this information to my girlfriend was, "Ewe gross." Thinking about this now makes me disappointed in myself that day. However, looking back with 20/20 vision I can now see how God was protecting me from being attracted to Travis until I could see him the way God was orchestrating me to.
You see at this time in my life, not knowing any better, I had created a list of things I did and did not want in my future husband. Number one on this list in capital letters with three explanation marks behind it were the words NO HAIR. I was not interested in being with someone that was a "hairy man", and Travis is one of the hairiest men I know. Looking back now though, I see how God used this first item on my list; to not be attracted to Travis physically until I was able to see the heart God had instilled in him to love me the way I never thought I deserved.
Don't get me wrong! I LOVE MY HUSBAND and think he is the BEST LOOKING MAN now physically, intellectually and spiritually. Yet I needed God to show me what love really looked like before I could fully receive the love God had for me through His love given to me through Travis. When I was waiting for my husband, Travis became the best friend I never knew I could have in a man, first! All of the things on my list God then checked off through Travis and then some, giving me more than I ever expected!
I thought I knew what I wanted and needed more than God did, and my question for you today is are you too doing the same? Are you comparing relationships, yourself, or people in your life based on your own expectations and not on God's? Because if you are, my challenge to you is to do what God asked of me. WAIT on God! TRUST in God to provide! Because when you do the unexpected will happen, and you will find the love you have been searching for all along; because the source of that love will be the author of Love pursuing you through them.
Love will become more than just the definition of love you have learned it to be. With this new understanding, God will open your eyes to see what God has for you as His child. You will experience a marriage built on friendship, purity and hearts that put God first as their first Love. This love will then create a healthier relationship than you will ever find on your own!
Purity is a heart issue, a gift for us, and a gift for us to give. To be holy and pure in God's eyes, to be His light in this world of darkness. So what does a pure heart look like? To love others as ourself.
A pure heart is willing to sacrifice when the world wants us to make it all about us.
A pure heart seeks after God to know Him first to receive the strength we need.
A pure heart is willing to be humble when pride screams, "Look at me".
A pure heart chooses to follow God's direction for our lives instead of ourselves.
A pure heart chooses to forgive always, love always and pray always.
A pure heart asks for forgiveness when sin has been allowed in & made things wrong.
A pure heart is willing to ask for forgiveness from even children, & make it right.
A pure heart has faith to see God can change ANYONE no matter what they've done.
A pure heart speaks the truth always!
A pure heart protects the weak and seeks the truth!
A pure heart is hard to maintain, but worth striving for. It always brings you closer to the God of the universe that wants you to be a part of His plan. To love and to be loved.
So how are you doing at protecting the gift God has given you today? And how well are you doing at giving that same gift to others?
Be Still and Know that I am God!
Those are the words I heard God speak the day I got divorced. I was so broken inside words would not come out no matter how hard I tried. While dissolving our marriage the judge told me I needed to speak because the court recorder could not record my head nods. But no matter how hard I tried the words would not get past the knot in my throat, created by the grief that I felt.
After leaving the court house, I ran to the only place I believed at the time was the closest I could be to God physically. I did not understand at this time in my life that God lived in me, I only knew Him as the God that lived in heaven, so I drove into the mountains to get as close to Him as I could. I drove and drove until I could drive no more and found the biggest boulder I could find to sit on to be the closest I could be to my heavenly father I knew how to.
As I sat there and cried I was distracted by the biggest butterfly I have ever seen. It began to flitter around the boulder and distracted me from my tears. It came so close to me as it flittered in the air right in front of me and starred into my soul that I was struck with fear and awe. As it continued to flittered again around the boulder, I said to God, "It would be really cool if that butterfly would come and sit on my right knee cap." As I finished speaking these words to God the butterfly did just that. As it placed its heavy little feet on the exact spot I had asked for I heard the clearest voice say, "Be still and know that I am here."
As I heard those words I took a deep breath and sat in amazement and wonder of God's love for me. God wanted me to know that I was not alone and He was there with me. He wanted me to know I was loved and to give me the hope I needed to see past the worst day of my life.
God wants you to know He is here with you in your pain and suffering too. He wants you to feel His presence and experience His hope for your life as well. As we seek after our heavenly father as the child of God we are, He draws close to us and shows us a greater depth of His love each time. What are you going through today that you need to hear "Be still and know that I am here." What pain are you experiencing that only God can understand because it is the inner most depths of your heart that only He can see? Whatever it is, He knows it and wants you to know that He is with you, that He loves you, and that He wants to bring you through to the other side.
If you would like to read more about this story and others from my journey with God, please find my book Pursued with Relentless Love on Amazon today!
As a Marriage Counselor these are the top three things I work on with couples, Communication Skills, Child Rearing, and Caring for one another. I want to elaborate to help you know that you and your spouse are working at growing together than living to grow apart.
It may sound like communication should be a priority in a marriage, but a lot of the time it is set aside as a priority and assumed that if "we aren't fighting" then things must be good. However, I would challenge this thought process as lack of communication will only lead to a relationship described by some as two ships passing in the night.
So when you communicate are you really listening to the other person, or are you thinking about your agenda, your defense or your response when your spouse is talking? Are you trying to understand what your spouse is saying by putting yourself in THEIR SHOES and seeing it from their perspective? Are you using "I" messages when you speak instead of "YOU" messages that only make the other person feel like they have to defend themself? Are you making time for the two of you a priority to just be together without interruption, to grow deeper emotionally on a regular basis?
Raising children is rewarding, but it can also be a struggle at times. Learning how to be on the same page when it comes to how to parent is important to create peace and harmony in your family. Whether your family consists of biological, step or adopted children, or a combination of the above, there are always dynamics that influence how you raise children. Understanding how to get on the same page through boundaries with love will help you both feel like you know what you are doing, and that you are not doing it alone.
Caring for each other...
Most people care for others the way they feel cared for or loved, and they do this without thinking if the other person feels the same. Understanding that love begins by being selfless in how you give love is important. Knowing that God is love and His love is selfless and not selfish can guide you to love your spouse the way they need to be loved. You may not feel loved when someone does something for you, but if you understand that that same person feels loved when you do something for them; you need to make it a priority to not only remember this, but to act selflessly in love.
Understanding how each persons emotional responses contribute to negative communication patterns in my marriage can create less conflict. Learning how your emotional reactions to your spouse make your spouse react to you can help you both choose not to operate in unhealthy reactions and instead choose to respond in a healthy way. By doing so, you and your spouse can create a new normal cycle that is full of love because each person is feeling heard.
So WHY a new church in Anchorage Alaska?
For starters, since God started speaking to my husband Travis and I in 2004 about planting a church and Alaska, we have learned that out of the 400,000 people that call Anchorage their home, 250,000 of them claim NO RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION of any kind. That number is mind blowing, especially when we have also learned that there are only 8 Assemblies of God churches in the city of Anchorage.
So why Alaska for Legacy Church?
When God first began this calling, we had no idea it would bring us to Alaska. And to be honest when I first heard God say Alaska, I didn't know how to feel about it. I knew God spoke it, but He also knew it would take time for the both Travis and I to get the training and experience we would need to be able to do what God was calling us to do. God began by laying Alaska on my husband Travis' heart! It was in a way that almost scared me at times, seeing him seeking churches in Alaska when we were doing so well where we were at. But God's burden for Alaska grew for the both of us! For Travis he began to not seek church openings for employment, but to pray for each church that didn't have a pastor, to find one, and then reach out to them after they got there.
This went on for over a decade, when we moved to Springfield MO and Travis gave this calling to plant a new church and Alaska to God completely, vowing to not pick it up unless God did so for him. And that's just what God did! God gave Travis favor to get a job working for Church Multiplication Network and then The Center for Holy Land Studies with the Assemblies of God. These positions reignited the burning desire in Travis to be obedient to God's calling no matter what the sacrifice, that then caught fire in myself as well.
While working in these two positions God orchestrated for Travis and I to both "run into" or as I like to put it have divine appointments with two individuals from Alaska, who would give each of us personal invitations to come to Alaska. The first was a lady from Alaska that had relocated to Springfield I had miraculously met on a walk with our two Siberian huskies. During this conversation I felt God's hand of peace and reassurance that Alaska was the place and planting a church with the gifting's and callings Travis and I had was the how.
Travis in this time had gone to a service at a local church in Springfield MO where the superintendents of the nation had gathered. While in service God had spoken to Travis to speak to the superintendent of Alaska while he was there. The way I remember Travis telling me the story was Travis responding to God by saying, "Okay God that would be cool and all but every person in this auditorium is an older white haired gentleman in a suit that looks like every other man in this room, how am I supposed to find him?" When God told Travis to look to his left and that his man would be sitting in the balcony beside him. Low in behold the superintendent of Alaska was there, just as God has spoken so Travis went to speak with him. During their conversation the superintendent invited Travis and I to make a proposal to start a new church in Alaska.
I remember Travis coming home that day and asking if we should apply, knowing he too had began to feel the comfort that had kept me from saying yes for so long myself. But my response was that I knew we should apply and that if we were not approved, at least then we would know that we had done all that we knew to do in obedience. So we made a video on the one and only day it snowed the BIGGEST snowflakes I have ever seen in the 5 years we lived in Missouri. The snowflakes were SOOOOO big and heavy they were weighing down my eye lashes while we filmed the video. It was like God was blessing us already with the LOVE OF WINTER that Travis and I share and had been missing so dearly while living in Missouri.
The process for approval to plant a new church in Anchorage Alaska began and was approved. Then God spoke to me at a women's retreat while dancing in front of the stage with hundreds of other women. He said, "Sell your house and use it to start the church". I was soooooo excited when I heard God's voice! I didn't have an ounce of fear in my soul, I knew that was exactly what we would do and the number $80,000 is what God had laid on my heart to pray for. We had spent the past year and a half flipping the home we lived in and finally felt like we finally had a place and home to call our own. Never having this before in my ENTIRE LIFE was a HUGE thing for me personally, but soooo excited to see what God would do with it!
When we sold our home in May of 2021 to move to Alaska and plant Legacy Church we had exactly $80,000 in the bank from the sale of our home and extra money God had blessed us with in the process. We were able to give all of that and more to Legacy Church and can't wait to see what God will do with it in people's lives!!! We want a church that experiences God's presence and loves one another the way God calls us to in the Bible. We want to lead people into a growing relationship with Jesus, because Travis, our daughter Emily and myself have all experienced Jesus showing up in each of our lives in a way that changed us FOREVER!!! We want to give this to others by Experiencing God - Making God Known - Developing People - Launching New Churches - Serving the City!
That is the WHY, now we wait to see the HOW! Come along and be a part of what God is doing already through Legacy Church AK! Get involved, Give no matter how much or how little, I know God will bless you because of it, because He has continued to bless us because of it ourselves! If you too would like to make Legacy Church part of YOUR LEGACY, please visit us at https://bit.ly/tithly-LegacyChurch TODAY! We would LOVE for you to be a Part of the Family!
Luke 11:10-13 MSG
10-13 “Don’t bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need. This is not a cat-and-mouse, hide-and-seek game we’re in. If your little boy asks for a serving of fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate? If your little girl asks for an egg, do you trick her with a spider? ... don’t you think the Father who conceived you in love will give the Holy Spirit when you ask him?”
God teaches us to pray to Him believing that He is our heavenly father who wants to give us not only what we need but desire as well. Jesus said this because He wanted us to be able to trust him, and know that He wants what is best for us. Jesus wanted to encouraged us as God's Children to ask Him for what we need, and to know that He will be here with us through His Holy Spirit.
It reminds me of a time when I was a single mother and camping in a tent by myself with my daughter. During the middle of the night we awoke to the sound of rain that turned into a down pour. We could see the amount of water falling and beginning to accumulate very quickly on the outside of our tent with every bolt of lightning that lit up the sky. I became afraid that the air mattress we were sleeping on may very well begin to float, when I remembered a verse in the bible that talks about the sound of God's voice in reference to the sound of lightning. With the child like faith in me I remember saying to God, "God I know that your voice is compared to the sound of lightning, (because of it's magnificence and power) and I want to hear what you have to say, but right now I am really afraid of the sound of it."
At that VERY MOMENT the rain stopped, there was not another single bolt of lightning and the storm moved away from us. It was almost like God was saying, it's okay Jen, I won't hurt you, you can trust me, and I did just that.
So my question for you today is what is it you need to ask God as your heavenly father for? Is it help, provision, companionship, or something else? No matter what your need is today, God already knows it and is waiting for you to ask Him. He waits because He wants us to have the choice on whether or not we ask for His help or not. Remember to see God as the Child of God you are that He cares for and loves you. Ask Him with the child like faith God instills in each of us when we ask Jesus in our heart and believe that God raised Jesus from the dead. And if you haven't asked Jesus into your life, let me pray with you Romans 10:9 MSG and believe that,
"The word that saves is right here,
as near as the tongue in your mouth,
as close as the heart in your chest.
It’s the word of faith that welcomes God to go to work and set things right for us. This is the core of our preaching. Say the welcoming word to God—“Jesus is my Master”—embracing, body and soul, God’s work of doing in us what he did in raising Jesus from the dead. That’s it. You’re not “doing” anything; you’re simply calling out to God, trusting him to do it for you. That’s salvation. With your whole being you embrace God setting things right, and then you say it, right out loud: “God has set everything right between him and me!”
Make things right between you and God TODAY, and ask Him for what you NEED!
What if I was to tell you that you could do just ONE thing with your child and it would create everlasting change. Does that sound too good to be true? It shouldn't, but to some parents it does and the reason why they do NOT choose to make this choice for themselves. However, now the choice is up to you.
Following through with your child after giving a directive is the difference most times between a child who makes good choices or bad ones. Why do I believe this? Because when we choose as parents to not follow through with good or bad incentives, we teach the child that there is either no reward for good behavior, or no consequences for bad behavior.
Not following through with consequences teaches the child they can do what ever they want without learning how their behavior and choices affect others. This is valuable knowledge we should be allowing our children to learn while with us, rather than having to learn it from others who do not love our children and care for them the way we do.
If we want our children to listen to us so they can in turn listen to their friends, teachers, other adults, police, and God, we have to be willing to follow through. Now most parents that have failed at follow through in the past will tell me that it doesn't work, because when they do follow through their child acts out more.
My challenge to them and to you as well if you too believe this, is to just try it for two weeks. That's right, give it a real try for two whole weeks and watch your child change their behavior and start making better choices for themselves. I have had multiple parents come back to me and say, "I would have given up, but I heard your voice in my head reminding me to stick with it for two weeks, so I did, and I am so glad I did."
Remember, if you have lacked follow through in the past, when you begin to stand by your word, your child is going to test you to see if you really will follow through. So this means that when they do begin to act out more that you are doing it right, or they would not be testing you in the first place.
Now I do have to caution, when following through I am not suggesting in any way that you should follow through with ANY type of abuse or neglect! I am just suggesting you follow through with directives that you are already saying and not actually doing. Like, "if you don't... I'm going to...". Take away the toy, tablet, etc. don't back down just because they act out.
Lastly, do everything you do in love, and remember you are an example to your child of the behavior you want from them by the behavior you yourself display.
Be blessed, until next time!
How do you express love,
how do you receive love,
and how is this affecting your marriage???
First question to help us, is to ask ourselves how we like to give or show love to others. The reason why we ask ourselves this question is because it shows us what our love languages are for ourselves, and how we are showing love to others whether intentionally or unintentionally. For example, if I like to give a hug to someone to tell them I love them, I am operating in the love language of touch. If I like to tell someone I love them all of the time or how amazing they are, then I operate in the love language of words of affirmation. If I like to show someone I love them by doing something for them, I am operating in the love language of acts of service. If I like to tell someone I love them by doing something with them, I am operating in the love language of quality time. And finally, if I like to tell someone I love them by buying or giving them something, then I am operating in the love language of gifts.
It is important to know how WE feel loved, because that is how we GIVE love. The problem with this is that our partner may or may not feel loved in the same way that we do. So when I give my husband a hug he may not feel loved, but instead will feel loved when I do something for him. By understanding our own love languages and those of our spouse, we can love them SELFLESSLY.
God teaches us that His love for us and others is SELFLESS, NOT Selfish. When we choose to show love to our spouse through our love language knowing they do not feel loved when we share our love through our love languages, we are being selfish. Because the act of loving them then is to make ourselves feel better or loved, and not to make them feel loved.
Bottom line, the challenge first is to know your own love languages. Second, to know your spouses. And Third, to love them through THEIR love language, NOT our own!
If you would like more information about love languages, or how else to bring God's love into your marriage let me know what I can do to help you! You can also get more inspirational content like this to encourage you on your journey by following the link below.
I pray your relationship will become a living testimony of God's love!
Luvs, Pastor Jen
Adopted from Chapman, Gary (1992). The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate. Northfield Publishing.
Where does shame come from? Does it come from a good place or a bad one? When we think about shame in our life, does it make us feel alone or hopeless?
If the answer to any of these questions leaves you feeling worse, you have to begin by asking yourself if how shame makes you feel is something you want to continue to live with. The reason I begin with this thought process, is because as a licensed professional counselor, life coach and pastor, I have learned that I can not help anyone who doesn't want to first help themself. So asking yourself if you want to continue to feel the way you are feeling, or if you want to do something about it to change, is the foundation to life or death in your emotional health.
God tells us in Deut. 30:19 in the Message Bible,
I call Heaven and Earth to witness against you today: I place before you Life and Death, Blessing and Curse. Choose life so that you and your children will live. And love God, your God, listening obediently to him, firmly embracing him. Oh yes, he is life itself, a long life settled on the soil that God, your God, promised to give your ancestors, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
The shame we experience, as most thoughts that make us feel hopeless, alone and afraid are not messages God wants for us to listen to. God wants us to experience freedom from the shame that others put onto us or that we may even put onto ourselves. BELIEVING in God's promises to us, and NOT in the lies the enemy wants us to believe in that only destroy us, is what God is telling us we have control over! All we have to do is choose to believe God, take Him at His word, and walk in the freedom He has for us.
So again, where are you at in your personal shame? Do you want to feel different? Because if the answer is YES, God wants to help you start walking in His freedom from shame TODAY, right this moment! He wants you to choose Life and NOT Death, to choose to BELIEVE God's words and NOT the words the enemy wants to destroy you with!
Lord God I pray for each person you have brought to read this message today. I pray you meet them exactly where they are in this very moment. Help them to believe YOU, that YOU love them, cherish them, except them and want them to feel the same way about themselves because YOU have created them in YOUR IMAGE!!! I love you Father God, show the person reading this how much YOU love them today! Point them to the right person to help them on their journey to the freedom you have for them, starting TODAY!!!
And, if you would like to talk with Pastor Jen herself, please contact her by making an appointment TODAY at https://bit.ly/MGK-Services-book.
Is this you?
.Do you want to know God more? Do you want someone to help you do so? Do you want someone to walk alongside you who has been in your shoes? Do you feel alone? Do you want to experience the healthier and happier you?