Monthly Archives: February 2014

God Is A Pro At Giving!

Before I say anything, I want you to know that I am not one who is for flashing EVERY good thing that happens to you on social media – as some things should be celebrated privately or held until the appropriate time; but this is NOT one of those moments. 

To give you a brief recap of who I am and what I do, I am a 20-something entrepreneur who has/is doing the following:

– worked in the insurance industry for 10 years

– freelanced in photography for almost 8 years and counting

– recently launched a media consulting business (Next Up Media Consulting, Inc)

– a woman God, a follower of Christ, future wife/mother, resilient innovator, semi-eclectic self professed creative, & lover of people

Now that you’ve brushed up on who I am and what I do, you will find it easy to believe that, I am one who will work hard to get to where I need to be. With that being said, insurance is something that I am good at by skill, but it’s not something I’ve always wanted to do. As a creative, I thrive on art, expression, connection, and well….creating! My employer and my customers are what keeps me going throughout the day. It’s a challenge servicing thousands of policies and being 5 people at once; but this job pays my bills and creates an environment where I can fund my dreams and goals. 

YES I lose sleep. YES I sacrifice healthy eating and gym time (I’m getting better ya’ll). YES I have to skip out on family hangouts. YES I only get to talk to my closest friends about once a week. YES my love have has taken a hit (I’m getting back out there) — but I know that at any given time, God will give me “double for my trouble”. Sacrifices made from a pure heart and motive will ALWAYS be rewarded in the end.

I was surprised and happy to find that one of those rewards came today in the form of this little number….

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I am not rich by ANY means, and the Lord TRULY knows I go over and beyond in the office because I want to do my job well and I know that “[I should] not be weary in well doing: for in due season [I] shall reap, if [I] faint not.” (Galatians 6:9 KJV)

I have not grown weary in well doing. I have not fainted and endured TRYING …and I DOOOO mean trying…times — and God has blessed me. I had to dish out almost my ENTIRE paycheck last month as a result of one of my bills being thrown off track due to a reps error. It hurt me a bit, but hey, it had to be taken care of and while it wasn’t MY fault, I still needed service. No one on EARTH can tell me that this blessing today wasn’t straight from God!

The lesson in all of this (I’m saying this to myself too) is to remember that the key to prosperity is your ATTITUDE. Bad things are going to happen to us – whether we are saved or not. But as Christians, we need to realize that God rewards our RESPONSE. He will bless you more and more when you don’t react based on temporary emotion and react with a ‘God attitude’ of faith and peace. As I stated at the beginning of my post, I am not rich, I am not making this post to brag, but I am posting this to encourage YOU so that you will know, if you work hard, keep a positive attitude, reflect the Light of Christ, and do things from the kindness of your heart — you will not go unrewarded.

Be blessed,

-Joc

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Megz Meals presents….THE HAPPY CONTEST!

Hey there! I have been waiting to post this since yesterday!

I am super excited about what Megan Ashley of MEGZ MEALS is cooking up! (pun intended) She announced this week that she was sponsoring “The Happy Contest”.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that the Pharrell’s “Happy” is booming from speakers EVERYWHERE, reminding people all over the world to stay happy! Megz wants YOU to be healthy AND happy, so she’s giving us all an opportunity to get the best of both worlds. Megan is a private chef who focuses on curating really tasty, healthy options for her clients. Her office is bi-coastal and this woman knows what she’s doing!

Take a few moments to watch the video entire video — laugh, get inspired, and enter!

The prizes are OFF THE CHAIN!

Good luck (because I’m entering too. haha)

– Joc

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4-Year-Old Makes Paper Dresses With Her Mom (via Huffington Post)

Story & Photos via Huffinton Post By Ilana Wiles, Mommy Shorts

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I started following @2sisters_angie a little over a year ago. Back then she was posting the typical stuff you see from moms on Instagram — pics of her daughter at the park, pics of her daughter eating breakfast and lots of photos of her daughter playing dress-up.

You know, the same stuff I post.

Then, about nine months ago, Angie’s feed started to change. It became clear Angie’s daughter (she calls her “Mayhem”) was more interested in fashion than the average 4-year-old. Mayhem shunned her store-bought princess dresses and started wrapping herself with scarves and sheets creating her own styles.

Then one day Angie got tired of finding her clothes in Mayhem’s toy box and suggested they make a dress out of paper. Mayhem loved the idea and they haven’t stopped creating paper dresses since.

I’ve been continually amazed every time Angie’s pictures pop up in my feed. The dresses started like this:

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And over the last few months, I’ve watched them evolve to this:

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Having a 4-year-old daughter of my own, whose biggest fashion moment was putting a red bow around the waist of her green Super Soccer Stars t-shirt and calling herself “Peter Pan,” I had a few questions for Angie. Namely…

How much is done by you and how much is done by your daughter?

The ideas are pretty much a 50/50 split, but Mayhem constructs a lot more than most people would probably believe. That’s one of the best things about this project, I see her learning new skills every single day. At this point, she knows exactly how many sheets of construction paper she needs to make herself a top and a bottom. She can lay the entire thing out and tape it together all by herself. Definitely, the more complex designs have more of my time invested, but she’s literally always beside me learning something new if she’s not tearing or taping or gluing while I am.

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Do you have an example of a dress she constructed on her own?

She made the dress below entirely by herself. I wasn’t even home and she couldn’t wait to show it to me and have me photograph it.

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Are all the dresses made of paper?

Most of the time. We use a lot of construction paper, but we also use tissue paper, wrapping paper, and gift bags. We have also used silk scarves, tulle, and aluminum foil. Basically, if we can find it laying around the house and it’s pliable, it’s fair game. Clear packing tape and glue are our adhesives of choice.

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Where does she find her inspiration? Is she watching runway shows and award shows?

We pull inspiration from wherever we go. The shark dress, for example, came as a direct result of her first visit to an aquarium.

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She also gets a lot of ideas from shows that she watches or books we read, like Minnie Mouse, My Little Pony and Elsa from “Frozen.”

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Sometimes I’ll Google images the day after award shows, so she can see the dresses worn on the red carpet and pick which ones she wants to make.

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We also leave a tab open on our iPad with a search for “project runway dresses” so that we can quickly reference those as well. She’s never actually seen an episode of Project Runway, but I did show her a clip one time explaining that there is a show all about making dresses and I thought she might hyperventilate.

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Have you always been crafty? Were you a fashion designer in any sense before this started?

No and no. I actually don’t consider myself to be the least bit crafty. Don’t ask me to build something out of popsicle sticks and pipe cleaners … you’ll be incredibly disappointed! Cutting and taping paper is about all we do. And the most ironic part of this whole project is that I am literally the least fashionable person you will ever meet. In reality, I know nothing about fashion and cannot sew a straight line to save my life. A friend suggested I could start sewing these creations from scraps of fabric and I laughed at her. I’ll take paper and tape any day over getting anywhere near a sewing machine!

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Do you think this is going to be a lifelong interest for Mayhem?

After we made our first paper dress, Mayhem requested another the very next day. Then another the day after that. And no one is more surprised than I am, that she still wants to make them nearly 9 months later. I have no idea if it will continue, but as long as she wants to make them, we’ll keep doing it.

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Follow @2sisters_angie and #fashionbymayhem on Instagram. You’ll be one of the first.

If you aren’t on Instagram, check out more of Mayhem’s creations onFashionByMayhem.com.

If you’d like see my daughter wearing the same striped leggings every day, follow @mommyshorts on Instagram.

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HIV-POSITIVE PASTOR SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS IN PRISON FOR KNOWINGLY EXPOSING CONGREGANTS TO THE VIRUS

HIV-POSITIVE PASTOR SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS IN PRISON FOR KNOWINGLY EXPOSING CONGREGANTS TO THE VIRUS

February 24, 2014 ‐ By Jazmine Denise Rogers

HIV-Positive Pastor Sentenced To 10 Years

Fox Atlanta

After being convicted just one month ago of knowingly exposing female congregants to the HIV virus, former pastor of Full Gospel Baptist Church in Atlanta, Georgia, Minister Craig Lamar Davis, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison, reports My FOX Atlanta.

You may recall our previous reports on Davis, who was accused of carrying on extramarital affairs with two women. One of his accusers, who allegedly remained celibate for 15 years prior to sleeping with the minister, tested positive for the deadly virus, while his second accuser, Ronita McAfee, tested negative. Davis, however, denies ever sleeping with McAfee.

“My smiles are empty. My laughs are empty. My hellos are empty. My hugs, kisses and touches are empty,” McAfee said in the courtroom during Davis’ sentencing hearing.

Davis also took the stand during the hearing, where he begged for mercy.

“I take full responsibility for everything that has gone on,” said the former pastor. “My heart truly goes out to her [unnamed victim’s] daughters. Very bad decision and I opened the door for a lot of people to be hurt.”

“This has been an ongoing nightmare,” McAfee told Fox after sentencing. “I’ve woken up out of my sleep with anxiety, uncontrollable shakes, thinking that I was HIV positive.”

Davis, who learned of his positive HIV status in 2005, was charged with two counts of reckless HIV.

– See more at: http://madamenoire.com/404207/minister-craig-davis-sentenced-10-years-prison-knowingly-exposing-women-hiv/#sthash.zssG6tMo.dpuf

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5QHlPnGGrY

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I Just Need To Write — ALL FOR HIS GLORY

Everything I’ve done in the last 3 years may look like it was done because JOCELYN is making moves for JOCELYN. While this is true in part, everything I do is all for God’s glory. Every photo taken, every business move made, every project completed has been done and will continue to be done in order to fulfill my life’s purpose. My life’s purpose is much like yours – to show Christ’s light and inspire others to do the same.

I want to live in a way where people look at my life, view where I’ve come from, and find themselves empowered and encouraged that the same favor that’s on my life is the same favor they have access to if they serve and live a life that’s pleasing to the one true God.

I’ve made some terrible decision in my past because I was trying to create the life that I thought I wanted and deserved – with my own mind – but when I realized that thinking like this was only leading to my demise, I began to change and allowed my will to line up with God’s will for my life. I’m not perfect by A LONG SHOT, but I have sense enough to know that God’s plans supersede my plans ANY DAY!

I realize that forfeiting my will means I may not get every career opportunity that I WANT, my love life may not develop as quickly as I WANT it to, I may not even make the money I WANT right now, but that’s alright.

Over time, I started to look at my life as a ruler. My life is a ruler and God holds it in His hands. Because I’m living along the length of ‘this ruler’, I can only see what’s behind me, and what’s immediately before me; God has the ability to see it all. What I struggle to see on my own, my Heavenly Father can see with one glance and knows the right time for each event that needs to take place.

So with that being said….when you hear about the successes of Next Up Media Consulting, Inc. and Joc’s Photography – when I move to the city of my dreams – when I finally announce that I’m getting married (glory Father), you will know that all of it was made possible because of God’s grace and favor in my life.

Now a word of encouragement for you.

If YOU are living a life and making moves for the glory of God, it doesn’t matter if ANYONE speaks manners of evil against what you’re doing; let the peace of God assist you in turning your cheek, because that is nothing but hate and misery aka a ploy of the enemy to get you off track from your journey of prosperity. If you would develop and nurture your ability to keep pushing forward, it will all pay off. As a child of God you are predestined for greatness. Don’t let darts from the enemy to knock you off your rocker. Keep living a life that’s pleasing to God, take your own personal emotions out of the equation, and continue towards greatness.

That’s what I plan on doing!

Flood of thoughts by – Joc

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New Born Baby Does Not Want To Let Go Of Her Mother

This video warmed my heart like you wouldn’t imagine! When I’m a mother, I will probably cry if my baby did this. ❤ Always room for mama’s baby!

– Joc

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QOTD: African Americans and/or Christians Tend To Steer Clear of Therapy

Good morning! While I’m inside recuperating from a battle with this snowy weather, one of my friends posted this as their Facebook status:

 QOTD: African Americans and/or Christians tend to steer clear of therapy…but what are the pros and cons (if any)?

There were plenty of intriguing responses, but after thinking about the question for a few seconds, I looked at therapy as and overall pro. I, being of the Christian faith and having a close relationship with God, definitely advise others to seek God first. AFTER we seek God, He may lead us to someone (who is not our pastor) who He’s gifted a particular set of skills (aka therapy) that can help our hearts to open and allow Him to come in and truly heal us to the core.

I am TOTALLY all for therapy if it’s needed. A lot of the time we forget that God GIVES us these psychologists and psychiatrists with these particular gifts to ultimately help us. We [as African American Christians] shouldn’t feel like we are dousing our faith by seeking help outside of a pastor. There are some traumatic experiences that if not addressed properly, can really manifest in nasty ways down the road. I have seen it happen first hand. This is why some people end up being rapists, murderers, narcissists, sociopaths, thieves, and gang members. Something traumatic that has happened in their lives (or they developed a mental illness that) was not addressed properly; thus leading them down a path of destruction. We can read our Word (aka the Holy Bible), seek spiritual council, and CONVINCE ourselves that we are fine; but if we don’t truly FACE the issue in order to FIX it, then we are essentially closing our hearts up tight and God is locked out and we don’t allow Him to heal us.

Yes some of the cons may be the high costs, privacy concerns, travel, and the time we may need to take away from work or family; but ultimately God wants us to be healed. And if He blesses us with the funds and the time to be able to participate in therapy or counseling sessions; then by all means, use what God has given you!

– Joc

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