Lessons from a special Coke Machine...

You may be like me as you walk towards a Coke machine.

My heart starts to pump a little faster.
Do I have the right change?
Have I got a crisp dollar bill?
Do I have a backup crisp dollar bill in case the first one doesn't work?
Will the machine be out of order? 
Will the drink I want actually be available?
Will I get my change back?
Will my drink explode when I open it?
Will it be all sticky because another drink spilled on it somewhere inside the machine?

If you're like me, you don't always approach a vending machine with joy & excitement. You approach it with fear & pessimism.

Now, to be fair, Coke machines may have some complaints of their own... They have to sit outside in the cold. They are given canadian quarters & taped up dollar bills, they're covered with graffiti, they get kicked, they get yelled at, they get pounded on.

It has all the makings of a lose/lose situation.

I think it's a lot like many marriages or parent/child relationships. Both people approach each other with expecting the worst.

That's why when I saw this video clip about a special kind of Coke machine I couldn't help but think of how we could turn things around in our relationships. 

*if the clip doesn't load, click here to view it
Notice throughout the video, when people have been given something more than they expected, what is their reaction?

Happiness, Joy, Excitement, Sharing, Laughter...

Are these things you've been experiencing in your relationships lately?

Would you like to see more Happiness, Joy, Excitement, Sharing, & Laughter in your relationships?

I love the way the Message Bible quotes 1 Peter 3:8-12:
"Summing up: Be agreeable, be sympathetic, be loving, be compassionate, be humble. That goes for all of you, no exceptions. No retaliation. No sharp-tongued sarcasm. Instead, bless—that's your job, to bless. You'll be a blessing and also get a blessing.
Whoever wants to embrace life and see the day fill up with good, Here's what you do:
Say nothing evil or hurtful;
Snub evil and cultivate good;
run after peace for all you're worth.
God looks on all this with approval,
listening and responding well to what he's asked;
But he turns his back
on those who do evil things"
Today, regardless of how much graffitti you've been covered with, or how much you feel you've been ripped off, would you consider a different reaction than the typical vending-machine/insult-for-insult response?

Would you consider being a "special kind of vending machine" that snubs evil & cultivates good, runs after peace, responds with sympathy & love, knowing that God will hear your prayer & strengthen you?

I recently saw a list of those famous old Coca-Cola slogans. Here are a few that stood out to me:
1887 - Delicious! Refreshing! Invigorating! Exhilarating!
1948 - Where there's Coke there's hospitality.
1905 - Coca-Cola revives and sustains.
1956 - Coca-Cola ... makes good things taste better.
1959 - Be really refreshed.
& finally, my favorite:
1979 - Have a Coke and a smile.
What would happen if you went home and offered the same to your family?

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