Monthly Archives: July 2014

Blog Spotlight: JocsNoteBook by Jocelyn Drawhorn

I am honored to be featured on the Write 2 Be Magazine Blog! Thank you so much!

Write 2 Be Magazine

I have been following this blog for several months now and I have been thoroughly entertained every time that I read a post from its wonderful writer Jocelyn Drawhorn. Her unique style of writing makes her blog very eclectic in that it doesn’t just hone in on one subject or another. She describes the blog as an online version of what goes on in her head and it is most certainly informative in what it gives to its readers. From spoken word clips, to music montages and reviews, to business and networking tips, relationship advice, and views on religion and spirituality, it provides all types of readers with something to take away from it. Not to mention the amazing photography of her own that you may find dispersed throughout to site as well. She is an office maven by day, a photographer by love, and a writer by skill…

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I’m A Living Witness — Being a TRUE Christian Ain’t Easy, but Possible!

Over the past year or so I have received numerous messages, texts, and calls from people who have been inspired by things I’ve said or posted. They congratulate me on “having it together” and “succeeding in running multiple successful businesses”. If you knew me years ago, you can truly appreciate how wild it is to be getting those comments. My life today is vastly different to what it was years ago. Though my spirit was still the same, my persona was a hot mess!

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I was literally out at the club or someone’s house party 3 days out of the week and was down for anything!

“Hey Joc, you want to get drunk, go to a haunted trail and get lost in the woods?” — SURE

“Hey Joc, there are like 5 parties going on tonight, you tryna hit all of em up?” – YOU KNOW THIS!

“Hey Joc, it’s Penny Liquor Thursdays at the club and free well drinks until 11pm, but the club don’t get popping until 11:30; what time you tryna go?” – 9

“Hey Joc, since we’re low on cash, want to put our money together, throw on some cds an throw an OBAMA Election party?” — HECK YEAH!

Need I say more?

10366005_2066617070636_1546049318093835747_nNow I am living a renewed life in Christ. And while I am living differently, it’s honestly more of a challenge than life was like before. I see my Christian walk like this: When I was cutting a fool, doing whatever I wanted to, the devil didn’t really care because I was already headed for destruction. I like to see him wandering around the Earth with his check list saying “Ok, she’s already headed for death, hell, and the grave….next!” It wasn’t until I decided to turn my life around FOR REAL and FOR GOOD that he gave me that Snuggle-face like, “Wait a minute, what’s going on here. What’s all this talk about Christ? Oh no, I gotta get on my job!” So he comes at me more. The only difference is that now I know and expect him to come after me, to make me trip up. That’s why I pray and try my best to not just SPEAK Christ, but LIVE Him as well. It’s sad to say, but “modern” Christians come a dime a dozen these days. You know, the ones who will condemn you for stealing or lying, but on the down low shacking up with their secret lover. You know the ones who will fall all out in church, then step right outside and cuss somebody up Monday and down Sunday. The ones who ALWAYS posting scripture, but steady at the club or somebody’s house turning up with wine or that white liquor. See I am not that type of Christian.  I take my walk with Christ seriously! It is not easy by ANY means because the life I used to live had its fun elements. I’d be lying if I told you otherwise. I still have to fight thoughts of abandoning the celibacy that I’ve managed to hold on to for almost 4 years and counting – but I do. It’s not easy deciphering what’s a “good harmless time” and what’s reverting back to old ways – but I do it. I do it because I know that people are watching me and someone’s relationship with Christ may hinge on how they see me act. And while it may seem “unfair” to tone down what I do because of what others may say – I know it’s necessary because it’s essentially MY WITNESS. As a Christian, your witness is virtually the only way people can tell you apart from the rest of the world.9081_1771559814389_1105572102_n

In Matthew 7: 15-20 Jesus said, “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.”

Your fruit is the way you walk and live. You can talk to someone about the bible until you’re blue in the face, but if they can worship with you at church, and turn up with you at the strip club every weekend – you are not bearing good fruit. SO I will wrap up with this. While I am thankful for all of your encouragement, and literally have my day made when you let me know that you can see Christ in me – I’m still a work in progress. 10336644_2090953999044_3724046153333302626_nI don’t wake up and effortlessly flee temptation or bad thoughts – it’s WORK! I fight discouragement, I fight naysayers, I fight the spirit of comparison daily – but through God’s strength I’m doing it and YOU can do it too. You have to cut some folk loose. You have to “be lame” and stay home from the all night partying. You have to stop posting racy pictures online and leave those attention seeking thirst traps alone. I am doing it and SO CAN YOU. – Joc

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“New Jordans” (Spoken Word That TRULY Speaks To This Generation)

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18 Struggles Of Having An Outgoing Personality But Actually Being Shy And Introverted

TRUE!!!

Thought Catalog

This… this is my soul song, people. This is my Vietnam.

1. You’re not anti-social, you’re selectively social.

2. At any given point, you have one (maybe two) best friends who are your entire life. You’re not a “group of friends” person. You can’t keep up with all that.

3. Social gatherings that are supposed to be “rites of passage” like prom and dances and other such typical nonsense is just… not for you. You don’t understand it. You want nothing to do with it.

4. When you do choose to grace a party with your presence, you are the life of it. You’re dancing on the table and doing body shots until 3 a.m.

5. … You then retreat into three days of complete solitude to recover.

6. You go out of your way to avoid people, but when you inevitably have to interact with them, you make it…

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Napping can Dramatically Increase Learning, Memory, Awareness, and More

In some places, towns essentially shut down in the afternoon while everyone goes home for a siesta. Unfortunately, in the U.S.—more bound to our corporate lifestyles than our health—a mid-day nap is seen as a luxury and, in some cases, a sign of pure laziness. But before you feel guilty about that weekend snooze or falling asleep during a movie, rest assured that napping is actually good for you and a completely natural phenomena in the circadian (sleep-wake cycle) rhythm.

As our day wears on, even when we get enough sleep at night, our focus and alertness degrade. While this can be a minor inconvenience in modern times, it may have meant life or death for our ancestors. Whether you are finishing up a project for work or hunting for your livelihood, a nap can rekindle your alertness and have your neurons back up and firing on high in as little as 15 to 20 minutes.

Big name (and high-dollar) companies recognize this. Google and Apple are just a few that allow employees to have nap time. Studies have affirmed that short naps can improve awareness and productivity. Plus, who wouldn’t love a boss that lets you get a little shut-eye before the afternoon push?

study from the University of Colorado Boulder found that children who missed their afternoon nap showed less joy and interest, more anxiety, and poorer problem solving skills than other children. The same can be seen in adults that benefit from napping.

Researchers with Berkeley found an hour nap to dramatically increase learning ability and memory. Naps sort of provide a reboot, where the short term memory is cleared out and our brain becomes refreshed with new defragged space.

Read: Sleep Removes Toxic Waste from the Brain

So how long should you nap?

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Experts say a 10 to 20 minute “power nap” is best for refreshing your mind and increasing energy and alertness. The sleep isn’t as deep as longer naps, which allows you to get right back at your day upon waking.

A 30 minute nap can lead to 30 minutes of grogginess, as you are often waking just as your body enters the deeper stages of sleep. You’ll experience some of that same fogginess if you sleep for an hour, but 60 minute naps are good for memory boosting.

The longest naps—around 90 minutes—are good for those people who just don’t get enough sleep at night. It’s a complete sleep cycle and can improve emotional memory and creativity.

Naps are good for you—physically and mentally. But don’t sacrifice night time zzz’s for an afternoon snooze; take your nap in addition to a good night’s sleep.

Original: http://naturalsociety.com/science-napping/

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9 Reasons (You May Not Know) Why Christian Single Ladies Can’t Find Their Boaz, David, or Joseph

I’ve gotten a lot of one-on-one questions about this from BOTH MEN AND WOMEN and I figured it was time to write about it. Before I write another line though, it’s important that I say a few things and get some things out of the way.

(http://ijustmetme.com/2014/07/9-reasons-you-may-not-know-why-christian-singles-ladies-cant-find-their-boaz-david-or-joseph/)

 

A. This article is mainly for mature Christian single women. Mature. Christian. Women. Why? Because Girls might get offended or not understand but a mature Christian woman will probably get it and take the knowledge. Waiting B. A woman’s relationship status does not define her, so being single is not a disease or an indication of something “wrong” with her. So this article is not to list a bunch of reasons why you are at fault for not being married …as if marriage was something you just bought at the store. I wouldn’t do that. I respect and care about women’s issues more than there is space to write about here. As a daughter of God, he is working out your story beautifully, so bask in that. This is however, for Christian ladies who are ready for marriage but frustrated that they can’t find the right guy even though there seems to be options. C. I write this respectfully but I will write it as honestly as possible as a man and as someone who knows a thing or two about relationships. I’ll tell you probably like no one has told you before. So the tone may be a bit direct not because I am brash but because I am writing to Women not girls and one thing I know about women is that contrary to the opinion that they want you to beat around the bush, when it comes to things that are really important, they want you to tell them like it is. They would rather know now, shed a tear or two and start working ASAP to move out, move up, move on or move forward so they don’t waste more time doing the same thing and not getting the outcomes they want. D. All your single girlfriends AND male friends should read this. So here we go.  Why can’t our wonderful Christian sisters find their Boaz, David or Joseph? 1. Many Christian ladies want a man that “knows where he is going”… but God’s men usually don’t have a clue:  Think about that for a moment. Think through the Bible…all the great men that had relationships with God and who he used and blessed….they usually didn’t have a clue about where they were going and (here is the even crazier part) even if they had a clue, their lives for a long time did not reflect that great place God said he was taking them. Just think about it. All the way from Abraham …going to a land he did not know; Joseph having a dream that people would bow down to him but became a slave and then a prisoner; David who was anointed to be King and then lived the next 15 years in the wilderness as a fugitive; Peter the great fisher of men who was barely able to catch fish. These men would have had a rough time finding a wife today. Could you imagine? Abraham calling sister Sarah aside after church and saying “Errrmmm Sarah you know I love you right? Soooo God wants to take us somewhere …but I have no idea where. Wanna marry me and come?” David too. “Look baby…I really care about you and want to spend the rest of my life taking care of you… In fact, I’ve just been anointed King…buuutttt I’m kinda living in the bushes right now and on the run from the King I’m supposed to replace.” Or Joseph. “Look Jill, God has shown me many dreams that people will bow down to me and I’ll be a great leader. But right now I wash dishes in Potiphar’s house and I’m a slave boy there” God’s men don’t “always” have a direction or know the details. So stop looking for men who have it all figured out! Here is the solution though…..here is the good news. Here is what you SHOULD be looking for:  Men who can be LED by God. (Rom 8:14) Don’t look for a man who already has the best laid plans. Look for one who knows how to follow directions from the best planner. 2. Many ladies approach relationships from the perspective of “Low Risk, High Reward”:Meaning, they want to get the absolute best man with the least amount of risk. (And I’m not just talking about finances here)They don’t want to put themselves out there at all. They want the man to take ALL the risks…to be utterly convinced he wants to be with them before they open up about who they really are. You know who you are…You act like YOU are the ONLY prize in the equation. He doesn’t know anything about your background but you turned into a private investigator to make sure he is good enough for you. You are financially irresponsible and an impulsive spender, you’re spending insane percentages of your income on your hair, shoes, bags, and your “package” but you want a man who knows how to make and keep money. You have not grown your faith or prayer life to where it needs to be  but you want a demon chasing, tongue speaking, Bible spitting warrior of a husband…because “he is the leader of the home”. You’ve dated a bunch of losers that didn’t work out but he is no good because he has had several failed relationships too? You want to see him as he is but you cover yourself up in perfectly filtered Instagram pictures, hair extensions, push up bras, makeup and layers of stuff that make it impossible to see who you really are. You are lazy with not much follow-through but you want a man who can stay up all night working on a project. If he put that spotlight on you, would YOU make the cut? In essence, many Christian ladies say they have faith but they don’t. They say that God is their source but they are lying. They say that they trust God’s will for their future but they are lying. They don’t. They put their trust in a man. What kind of job he has/can get. How much he is making or can make. They want to make sure he has the “ability to provide”. They want him to have his life utterly figured out… But I have met many great men who haven’t found the employment they have the potential to get. I have met many others who were living it up until the economy crashed.  I have met some who had it all but God insisted they give it up to go and further the gospel. 3. Many ladies forget that good Christian men look for women who share similar non-romantic, non-spiritual values: Sure he should be romantic and sure he must share those spiritual values but eerrmmm ladies…these Christian brothers are looking for those other character traits as well that speak to the OPERATION of your possible lives together. Dependability, thriftiness, work ethic, time management, hard work, follow-through and so on. One of the first things we learn about Ruth for example, was her work ethic. ( Ruth chapter 2). She knew how to pull her hair back, forget about her nails, roll up her sleeves and get on the grind. She worked really hard and even when she got the attention of the “well established guy with the sensitive heart” she didn’t stop working. She took the break that he offered her and went back to work. That’s how you earn a man’s respect…when you can show him that what he HAS does not define who you are. Here is the icing on that cake. Just because Ruth could get down and work, didn’t mean she couldn’t look pretty and tidy up (Ruth 3:3) 4. Many ladies pre-qualify their leads: This is one of the most CRITICAL reasons. In fact, there is a powerful 2 part series on just that HERE: http://ijustmetme.com/2014/05/dont-pre-qualify-your-lead/ 5. Good Christian men know their worth too and don’t want to settle either: Yea ladies…men are understanding their worth a bit more too.Christian men are getting more and more comfortable attending relationship seminars and getting information about seeking God’s face for a wife. They are realizing how powerful of an impact a wife has on the outcome of their lives and ministry, and they are spending more time trying to see what is beneath the surface. They know that a woman can make or break everything. They realize that a woman’s desires can accelerate him towards purpose or derail him. They are praying more and they are realizing that while you still remain a prize, they too are precious in God’s eyes and want to do right by him. They are realizing that a wife can make or break a man. Yes they are praying for a Ruth but they are also praying against Delilah as well. 6. Many Christian ladies have no testimony with men: A few years ago, an older friend (a number of years older than me) came up to me after a church program and asked me about a lady in my church. Who she was and what she was like as a person. I didn’t stop talking for minutes. They were married about a year later. Same thing happened to Ruth. (Ruth Chapter 2 from Vs 3) Boaz came back from a trip, saw Ruth and asked his Foreman “Who is that and who does she belong to”, to which the foreman answered and gave a fantastic testimony of her character. (See Boaz’s response in Vs 11) Here is a secret ladies, you know how you like a guy and try to keep it to yourself until your girlfriends force a confession out of you? We guys don’t do that. The moment we think we are interested in you, we are telling someone and we are asking around about you….and we are asking our MALE friends/mentors. Because we know they will tell us like it is and of course won’t spread it all around church and make things suddenly awkward or cause all the sisters to start giving the dirty eye next Sunday. Bro code. The truth is that even Christian ladies can be toxic sometimes when it comes to how they treat men who they don’t consider a prospect. You forget that when the real prospect comes and is interested in you, he will ask other men…some who may never have approached you but who have watched you from afar, and yes some who may have had an interest in you but you didn’t like. How did you handle those situations? (You totally need to read that article link above…especially the 2nd part of that series) 7. Many Christian women want a Proverbs 31 Man: That’s not a typo. Pick up your Bible and read Proverbs 31 again with fresh eyes… from the  perspective of the character of that woman…and you will see that those qualities are the ones that many women are looking for in a man when they should be busy developing those qualities themselves. Single Christian men are reading that passage looking for those qualities in a woman, and women are putting that passage down and instead looking for those qualities in a man. 8. Many Christian ladies want to be married but they are not truly ready to be led: They want to marry a boyfriend but not a husband. They want only a partner but not a leader. They want an emotional prenup that things will always be 50:50. They say they will concede authority to God himself but in their heart, they are not willing to be led by his representative in the home. What I am about to say next I say with the utmost respect to women. Men were created to lead at home. Now, with that leadership comes accountability to God meaning that God holds him accountable and will punish him first for bad leadership. But a man cannot be accountable for a woman he can’t lead….and a Christian man does not want to be over anything he can’t be accountable to God about. 9. Many young married Christian women are painting a fairytale picture of marriage to their single ladies Many young married women are doing a major disservice to single women. These young married women create a fairytale picture of weddings and marriage to their single friends. They love being the center of attention and talk up how dreamy it is. Perfect Instagram photos, perfect wedding photos, expensive glamorous weddings, perfect Facebook updates, photos and so on. Is there anything wrong with that? No. It would just help a lot more when married young women keep it real with their sisters and tell them that the wedding day does not make the marriage. It would help a whole lot more if they sit their single friends down and talk about the importance of a praying wife, a strong wife, a submissive wife (to a Godly man)  and how contrary to popular opinion, the faith of a wife is both a weapon for the family and its defense as well. Instead, they get their single sisters all dreamy eyed and waiting for a perfect story and a perfect man…waiting for KalEl from planet Krypton with the big “S” on his chest and a red cape, when they should look at Clark Kent from Planet earth. Sisters, God has a beautiful story of love written for you. Am I saying settle? No way. But I am saying look at these men through the eyes of Christ. Get your pride out of the way. Don’t define your marital success by how well your wedding day or “lifestyle” stacks up with other women.  Most importantly, start seeing yourself as a true (not just perceived) gift from God that can bring God’s favor and blessings into your husband’s life because that’s what you are. So work to BECOME that and I truly truly wish you a love-filled, Christ centered happy marriage when it does happen. So…start/join the conversation below. Which one of the points resonated with you? Was it an eye opener? Were there any surprises on the list? Any additional thoughts? Share those comments below.

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Endure Pain In Order To Grow — Lessons I Learned From My Parent’s Tree

Sometime last year I assisted my dad in pruning the flowered tree that grew in his front yard. I hadn’t really noticed that over the years the tree wan’t blossoming like it had when I was in high school, and though spring had come and gone, it still looked brittle, dank, and withered. “Where are you going” is what I asked my dad when I peeped him heading towards the front yard with a saw in hand. – “I’ve got to trim that tree so it’ll grow.” I got out of my car and followed him to the tree. The tree was honestly a big ball of woody confusion. When my dad pointed out the parts he wanted to hack I was shocked! What he’d just described to me sounded more like a chopping session rather than a little trimming. Nevertheless I was intrigued and asked if I could help — which I did. Once we finished the tree was an eye sore. Everything was jagged and rough looking. It was far from the beautiful tree it once was when my parents first moved into their house. FASTFORWARD >>>> to this past week. I randomly noticed that the tree that was in shambles last year had blossomed into a more beautiful object than it was before we even pruned it! I guess I’d been so caught up in my life that I never stopped to realize it. That got me thinking…that’s EXACTLY how God does us. In order for us to grow into the beautiful, godly person He knows we’re capable of being, He has to chop away some of the stuff in our lives that is doing nothing but weighing us down in our Christian walk and leaving us spiritually dank and dark inside. He might have to cut away friends that we’ve had for forever! He might have to cut the taste of weed or alcohol or sex away from our lives. He may have to cut away some music or reminders of a worldly life in order for us to truly spiritually grow. YES it will be ugly. YES it will be painful, but before we know it, we will be just like that tree in my parent’s yard — more beautiful than we’ve ever been! I know I’ve had to be pruned almost to the doggone nub but I am so thankful to God that He has given me the strength to make it through this process sane and in tact! I’ve had people call me “brand new” or try to remind me of the way I used to live, or tell me “it’s not that serious” or “you’re being judgmental” — but I don’t give a care in the world because I know that  the spiritual and physical pruning that has gone on in my life (and is still going on) is necessary for me to be the beautiful woman of God I was originally designed to be! Romans 12:2 What needs to be trimmed from YOUR life? – Joc

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