Fresh from The Grove Blog - What Would Jesus Say to Artist's Today?

Another beautiful day at The Grove...

Another beautiful day at The Grove...

When Roy and I began to promote today's free Grove Teleseminar, What Would Jesus Say to Artists Today?, we were a bit blown away by how many of you responded... thank you!

We simply asked the question and over 30 of you responded with your thoughts and comments with what Jesus would say to artists today... or should we say, "What Jesus IS saying to His artists today?!"

If you missed this free online conversation, just click here and you can listen in. For you writers and note-takers, we put together a downloadable PDF for you to follow along.

Or if you just want to listen and scribble, just listen and scribble. (I, Joey, usually making inter-connected triangles when I scribble...probably an Irish-trinity-pathology of sorts.)

Take a Deep Soak in This!

Roy posed this question of what would Jesus say to artists today to his friend, Brett Maybury, in Nashville. Here's how Brett responded... our jaws are dropping at the depth and generosity in what he offered... which is why we are so thankful he graciously allowed us to share it with you.

From Brett

Here's what stirs in my heart - what I think Jesus would say:

I love you. I am the Creator of your heart, your mind, your frame, your being (Job 10:11; Psalm 119:73; Isaiah 44:24). I love you. It is my delight to sing over you, filling the heavens with a song that is uniquely yours (Zeph 3:17). I love you. I know when you sit down and when you rise up. I am familiar with all your ways (Psalm 139:2-3). I am not far-off and not angry with you. I will never leave you (Joshua 1:5). I am the complete expression of love (1 John 4:16). I love you. 

My love for you releases and waits. You are free in your choosing. When you fill your life with the things of this world, you will find me waiting. When the work of your hands drives the purpose of your day, you will find me waiting. Like a father who waits on a farmhouse porch for his child to come home or return from the field, you will find me waiting. I am always here for you, waiting. In the quiet you will hear me calling your name. Turn and you will see me (Luke 5:31-32). It is my desire to give you all that I am my child (1 John 3:1). I love you.

Are you weary? Are you tired? Do you feel burned out on religion? (Matthew 11:28-30) Do you feel abused from being treated like a product? Remember who you are. You are mine. I have saved you (Isaiah 43:1). Look to me and I will rescue you from your striving. I will shape you, carefully, lovingly, like a potter masterfully shaping clay (Isaiah 64:8). Look to me and your worry will loose its hold. It is my perfect love, not your effort to control that will remove your fears (1 John 4:18). Your identity is not in the results of your creative expression, the verdict of the reviewer or the position you hold. Your identity is in me (2 Cor 5:17). I love you.

You bear my image and unique design. You are made to create. The artistic voice I gave you is for your joy and my delight. I will purpose the journey of each artistic expression. Do not compare yourself with others. This will only trap you in places of discouragement, pride or envy. Do not try to make things happen in your strength. Find rest and release in me (Psalm 46:10). Place before me your art, as you do your life. In trust and surrender see what I will do. The culture around you will always drag you down to its level of immaturity, but I will bring the best out of you. I develop well-formed maturity in you (Romans 12:1-2).

I am calling the artist to a higher calling than decoration and propaganda. As you continue to join with other worshippers, encouraging love and helping out, I will awaken you to the gifts of my Spirit (Hebrews 10:22-25). Artistic expression of all kinds will teach and prophesy, convict and heal, bring wisdom and clear understanding, build faith and release the miraculous (1 Cor 12:7-11; Eph 4:11). The surrendered life of each artist and their artistic expression will be like wheat seed buried in the ground. The cost of this burial will give rise to an experience and expression of my Kingdom (John 12:24-26), changing the landscape around. 

I am calling you to life my child. I am calling you to me. And on that day when you depart this world, your life and art will continue to speak, because of love. I love you my child.

Wow...thank you Brett!

We'd love your comments to Brett's words and your reflections on the teleseminar. Please comment below...

What Would Jesus Say & Joey's Christmas Appetizer Recipe

Hi everyone...

I'd like to invite you to join Roy and I for this free Grove Teleseminar next week! We're inviting you and our artist friends online to join the conversation.


What Would Jesus Say to Artists Today?
Free Grove Teleseminar (One hour)
With Joey O'Connor & Roy Cochran
Thursday, December 19
9am PST, Noon EDT
(Phone & Web options)

Click here to Register Now!

What would Jesus say to artists today? It's an intriguing question, isn't it?

What would he say to you? To me?

What would Jesus say about your life? Your heart? Your craft? And your creative calling as an artist?

Jesus spoke to all kinds of people from all walks of life. He surrounded himself with a crew of followers that, at a glance, wouldn't be your first pick if you were choosing sides for a game of kickball.

Artists are a unique breed. A creative tribe that we think Jesus really cares about. Join as we explore the provocative question of what Jesus would say to artists today.

We'll kick around some ideas. Ask a few questions. Engage you in a stimulating, hopefully very encouraging conversation.

Who knows? Jesus just might have something to say to you. We hope you'll join us.

Click here to Register Now!

I doubled the recipe here, but I am trained professional.

I doubled the recipe here, but I am trained professional.

Joey's "Heart Attack on a Plate" Christmas Appetizer

Okay, I'm quite embarrassed that I am adding inches to your waistline this Christmas, but after last night's Grove Christmas party, I had quite a few requests for this incredible appetizer.

As many of you know, we love great food at The Grove. The culinary arts are in full swing at The Grove (and if we were all honest, we would say it's our favorite art form!).

I learned this recipe from my sister Loretta years ago. I have made it an annual tradition that whatever I don't finish the night before, I eat for breakfast the next morning because it's soooooo good! And so easy-peasy to make!

Heart Attack on a Plate Christmas Appetizer

Ingredients & Instrucciones

One Brie round

One Pillsbury French Roll bread tube

Couple cups of Pecans

1/2 Cup of Brown Sugar

1/2 Cup Kalua (a coffee-flavored, rum-based liqueur from Mexico...not Hawaii!)

Box of your favorite crackers.

Preheat oven to 350.

Put said brie in a baking dish. POP! that Pillsbury dough boy puppy open (Sidenote: my best friend in elementary school was Taylor Pillsbury of Pillsbury family fame). Tuck the french roll dough in a circular fashion around le brie!

Dump and I mean, dump the pecans on the brie. Or lightly scatter if you wish.

Sprinkle, pour, shower or flourish the brown sugar over the pecans and da' brie.

Then, bring it on! Lightly pour the Kalua over the brown sugar, pecans and's very cool watching the brown sugar absorb the Kalua. This recipe has a lot of flexibility...go light or heavy on the brown sugar, pecans, or decide!

Slide your incredible concoction into the oven for 15 minutes or so. Be time, I put a bit too much Kalua on top and the oven door blew open from the overheated alcohol fumes! KA-BOOM!

When the Pillsbury bread is lightly brown, you're ready to go! You can serve it with crackers or just dip the bread into the brie cheese.

Imagine this: Warm brown-sugared bread with dripping Brie piled high with Kalua-laced pecans.

Share this with your friend and you'll have friends for life.

Merry Christmas,


Click the social tabs if you'd like to share this recipe now...

A Grove Thanksgiving

On behalf of Roy Cochran, our Board of Directors (Monty, Sherri, Bob, Roy, & Rick), and myself, we want to wish you and your family a wonderful Thanksgiving from The Grove!

I am so grateful for everyone of you in our Southern California artist community and online community that have made 2013 such a wonderful year. Between our monthly Grove Gatherings, Artist Getaways and our growing online community, we have seen God do so many wonderful things in our lives.

New friendships. Spontaneous laughter. Hearts healed. Deeper worship. Prayer and affirmation of creative callings. Shared burdens. Lightened loads. Generous spirits. Great cooking!

Oh, so much to be thankful for. Here's a short, inspirational scripture meditation produced by Mark Perez and Grove Films called Thanksgiving Grace that I hope cultivates deeper thanksgiving in your heart and life. Take some time to watch it with your family. Share it with your friends or church.

Click here to watch Thanksgiving Grace. Your purchase helps support The Grove.

Click here to watch Thanksgiving Grace. Your purchase helps support The Grove.

Grove Day! This Saturday, November 30, 10am-4pm

Enjoy a day at The Grove, our 12 acre organic lemon and avocado property.

Enjoy a day at The Grove, our 12 acre organic lemon and avocado property.

Escape mall insanity and join me for a day at The Grove in Valley Center (North San Diego) this coming Saturday after Thanksgiving. Bring the whole family!

  • Explore the grove!
  • Collect firewood to take home!
  • Have a picnic!
  • Collect rocks for our new patio! (We're building a cool wall & entertainment area!)
  • Sit by the fire with hot chocolate!
  • Take a hike!
  • Kids are welcome!

Please email and we'll send you directions! It's going to be a fun day!

Bring home a truckful of wood...we have plenty!

Bring home a truckful of wood...we have plenty!

October Gathering Update & Worship Leader Getaway

It's been a full harvest season at The Grove. Between our monthly Grove Gathering, October Artist Getaway, and this Thursday's Grove Online Class, Becoming A Thriving Artist, it's been a rich season of new friendships and fruitfulness. 

Here's the latest... 

October Gathering with Aaron Blanton & Jason Leith

At The Grove's October Gathering, between musician Aaron Blanton on guitar and Jason Leith presenting several pieces of artwork from his Sacred Streets exhibition, Roy said, "It felt like we ate two main dishes."

Both Jason and Aaron (accompanied by his buddy, Nate) led us in a great evening of worship, prayer and the challenge to pursue artistic endeavors utterly dependent on God.  

For his senior art project at Biola University, Jason literally took to the streets in downtown Los Angeles by drawing charcoal sketches of homeless people in Skid Row. Once his portraits were completed, Jason and his friends created a massive gallery in the back of the Union Rescue Mission for a three-day show for the homeless. Jason shared amazing stories of God ministering to the homeless through his artwork. We're so proud of Jason's heart for the poor and his desire to see them lifted out of poverty through beauty.

Aaron Blanton is a Grammy nominated, three-time Dove Award winning recording artist who offered an incredible new set of songs. Mixing humor and a fresh perspective on not singing "worship cover songs," Aaron brought it on with great music and storytelling. Click here for more info about Aaron's music and his upcoming events.

Save the Date!

Next Grove Gathering is Nov. 11, Monday evening, 6:30 PM.

Jason Leith and his artwork from Sacred Streets. 

Jason Leith and his artwork from Sacred Streets

Singer/songwriter Aaron Blanton leading worship with fresh, original songs.

Singer/songwriter Aaron Blanton leading worship with fresh, original songs.

Jason used cardboard, steel drum lids...anything he could find in the streets to create his portraits. 

Jason used cardboard, steel drum lids...anything he could find in the streets to create his portraits. 

Worship Leader Grove Getaway-November 4-6, Big Bear

It's not too late to register for next week's Worship Leader Getaway to Big Bear. Be good to your heart and register today... click here for registration details!

Great friends and conversations at our October Getaway to Lake Elsinore.

Great friends and conversations at our October Getaway to Lake Elsinore.

Nothing like lingering over a good meal. 

Nothing like lingering over a good meal. 

The kitchen and lake-view living room make for relaxed hangouts. 

The kitchen and lake-view living room make for relaxed hangouts. 

Join Us This Thursday... Becoming A Thriving Artist

The newest Grove Online Class
This Thursday, October 31, Noon-PST, 3 PM EDT
Phone & Online Listening Options (One-hour class, only $9.99)
Click here to register now.

Everyone is alive, but not everyone thrives. Becoming a Thriving Artist is a dynamic online class designed to help you understand what it means to become a thriving artist. Led by Grove Founder and author, Joey O'Connor, this Grove online class will give you inspiring insights to help you grow in your life, craft and thriving life of God.

In Becoming A Thriving Artist  we will explore...

  • Lessons from the Olive Tree
  • What are the Attitudes of A Thriving Artist?
  • How does A Thriving Artist Cultivate their Life & Work
  • The Daily Practices of A Thriving Artist 
  • The Community of A Thriving Artist

Awesome Sept. 9 Grove Gathering & Updates

Wow, where do I start? Roy and I are so encouraged by all the recent developments with The Grove, we want to give you some important updates... 

Singer/Songwriter Brady Toops -- Special Guest -- Sept. 9 Gathering -- Aventura Yacht Club in Dana Point. 6:30 PM

Brady Toops-September 9 Grove Gathering

Brady Toops-September 9 Grove Gathering

Coming all the way from Nashville, Brady Toops will be joining us for this special evening at the beautiful Aventura Yacht Club (not that we own any yachts...yet!) in Dana Point Harbor. Brady's new CD came out this week on iTunes at #9. The calibre of artistry in our Grove Community is amazing! This will be a special Grove Gathering in beautiful Dana Point Harbor to kick off our fall. (We'll be back at Tom's in October!)

Visual Artist-Tom Clark Painting Live

Visual Artist-Tom Clark Painting Live

Not only will you hear great music by Brady, artist Tom Clark (our good friend & Grove Gathering Host) will be painting live. If you haven't see Tom paint live or brought him to your church, company or non-profit fundraising event, click here to learn how he can serve your organization. He is incredible!

Because we have some additional expenses for this special Grove Gathering, we are asking everyone in our community to purchase a ticket on Paypal before the Gathering. Ticket's are only $10 per person ($15 at the door!) for a great meal, incredible music, live art and many wonderful creative people! Most of you should have received your Evite and you can click here get your ticket now.

If you haven't brought a friend to a Grove Gathering yet, this is a great opportunity to get them involved. Our desire is to see artists THRIVE! 

Save the Date! Fall 2013 Grove Getaways

Join us this coming fall for a Grove Getaway. Great food, creative conversations...ahh!

Grove Artists at the Big Bear August Getaway. 

Grove Artists at the Big Bear August Getaway. 

Oct. 18-20 Artist Getaway
Awesome home on Lake Elsinore  

 Nov. 4-6 Worship Leader Getaway
A big, beautiful cabin in Big Bear! 

Click here to reserve your spot by registering today! 

Give yourself the chance to take a 'deep soak' in your relationship with God and other Grove friends! 

New Grove Online Classes!

We're happy to announce that The Grove now offers low-cost online classes designed to help you cultivate your spiritual life and creative work as an artist. These classes have emerged out of conversations and creativity flowing from The Grove community. So far, we've received a very positive response from artists across the United States...even Austria & Australia!

Once we offer a live Grove Online Class with phone & webinar options, the call is recorded for you to listen to later. Please listen online and share with your friends. Grove Online Classes help artists like you and they support the ministry of The Grove!

Click below to listen to these recent online classes... 

Artist Q & A with Joey O'Connor

How to Create A Thriving Visual Arts Ministry with Christene Sloan 

Pursuing Your Artistic Destiny with Roy Cochran 

Writing Your First Book with Joey O'Connor 

Would you help us get the word out by forwarding this email to a friend? Any shares on Facebook, Twitter, or your favorite social media site are appreciated!

"Art Has Failed to Humanize Our Country"

"Art Has Failed to Humanize Our Country"

I recently read A Global Perspective, a fascinating interview in the LA Times with theater director, Peter Sellars, a UCLA professor of arts and culture where he teaches Art as Social Action and Art as Moral Action. ​

When asked, "You've said that 'art over the past 25 years has failed to humanize the country.' How do think it can accomplish that?"​

3 Ways to Cultivate Faith over Fear

3 Ways to Cultivate Faith over Fear

As an artist, is fear kicking your butt? Maybe you’re not an artist, BUT you struggle with worry, fear, and anxiety? As an artist, I’ve found that fear is the number one obstacle to creativity, innovation, growth, focus, and artistic success. This past Monday night at our monthly Grove Gathering, Roy Cochran, my friend and co-worker, shared with forty-five artists the importance of cultivating faith over fear. I know this struggle of faith over fear well. If you’ve read my free book, The Longing: Embracing the Deepest Truth of Who You Are, you know that I had a ten-year wrestling match with chronic pain, fear and anxiety. I’ve learned a few lessons over the years that just might help you cultivate faith over fear. Read on...