The story of Jeremiah Joe Coffee's name is a personal one. Our oldest daughter, Madison, came into our lives in the fall of 1995. She was everything, and more, than what we hoped for—beautiful, smart, happy…and ours. As Madison entered toddlerhood, we began noticing developmental concerns. The short story is that we learned that Madison has a neurological disorder that results in various developmental delays.
DeWayne and I struggled with what this meant for her and for our family. We entered a season of grief. Our dreams and hopes for her were shattered. In this season, a verse from Jeremiah (29:11), posed a problem for me: “I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans to prosper you, not harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.”
We struggled with the reality of God really having a plan for her. How was she to prosper or even have a prospect of hope or a good future? We made a decision to just believe that the Jeremiah verse was true, even though we weren’t sure how for Madison.
The days between then and now have not been without struggle. Often in the middle of chaos, I would say the verse to Madison. Not so much that she would believe it, but more so to remind myself of the hope. There were days that I was saying it so often, that Madison would say the verse to me if she saw that I was frustrated.
Our relationship with Madison has changed our worldview. More than any other person, she has taught us more about ourselves, our marriage, people, what is important and what is not so important. She models love, pure emotion, acceptance, and forgiveness. She does not fret about her future. She is full of hope.
Because of the impact of Madison in our lives and because of the hope of the verse in Jeremiah, we chose to use it in the name of our stores. At a minimum, it is a reminder of this life-view that Madison is continuing to teach us. The word art in the store are key words from that verse. DeWayne and I believe that God knows us, His plans are to prosper us, and that all of us—no matter the person, or circumstance—has a hope and a future.
—DeWayne & Pamela Cronkright