There is nothing like a good friend! Friendship is a treasured gift. In today's podcast, I share about the topic of different types of friendship in the Bible. I'm also launching my new ebook for Kindle on Amazon, my first children's book that is on the topic of friendship--Nat and Jax: We CAN be friends! It is loosely based on the true story of my adopted black, female cat Natalya ("Nat") and our daughter Leah's black, female cat Jax becoming friends. A quote by Anonymous says, "Life was meant for good friends and great adventures." Proverbs 27:9 reads, "A sweet friendship refreshes the soul." Who are your friends? Who can you become a friend to right now? Right now with the Coronavirus pandemic, people are scared, panicky, frustrated, depressed, and confused. They need hope and encouragement. Be that friend today!
When you read the news or go on social media today, almost all you see is centered around one word: Coronavirus. As of this episode, there are a reported 14,611 deaths world-wide from the virus. In the small, rural town of Butler (a suburb of Kansas City) where I live, people are in fear and are panic-buying toilet paper. Hand sanitizer, canned goods, frozen foods, eggs, bread, and even cat and dog food items are flying off the shelves almost as soon as the employees stock them on the aisles. While I believe the virus is dangerous and we need to use wisdom such as washing our hands, I do think the media is hyping this to create panic. God is bigger than this virus and the blood of Jesus is more powerful. In today's podcast, I share a Scripture to encourage you and give you hope: Psalm 46:10. "Be still and know that I am God." You don't have to be afraid. Trust God, for He is faithful and good.
As believers in Jesus Christ and in the days we're now living in, we need God's wisdom to be our GPS, to guide us and helping us with daily decisions. James 1:5 teaches us to ask God for generous wisdom. When God asked King Solomon one night what he desired, instead of asking for riches or the life of his enemies, Solomon requested wisdom and discernment to rule the people of Israel. God was pleased with this request and gave him wisdom such as no king before him had ever had, or any king of his day. In this episode, I share 7 tips for living a life of wisdom.
I don't read the news a lot because so much of it is negative and I believe it induces fear for the purpose of the government controlling the masses. But I read just enough of the big news to stay current, usually on Facebook. Recently the Coronavirus is in the news. It is believed to have started in Wuhan in a seafood market from animals, which spread to humans. So far as of this podcast, 41 people have died and 1,355 have been infected. China's Leader Xi Jinping has suspended travel abroad and the State Department has ordered all American workers at the U.S. Consulate in Wuhan to evacuate. It has spread to other nations such as Japan, Hong Kong, Australia, France, and possibly the U.S. The news headlines today are scary. Luke 21:25-26 warns that in the end times, people would feel terrified at what is coming. God doesn't want you and me afraid, but to believe in and trust in Him. Today's episode shares encouraging Scriptures to battle the spirit of anxiety and fear. Be sure to check out my book on this topic, Metamorphosis: Transformed From Fear to Faith, at http://www.amazon.com/author/bethmjones
As I sat this morning in my pink, polka-dot pajamas and drinking my creamy, hot coffee, I prayed and thought about the upcoming year 2020. The Bible says in Proverbs 16:9 that we can make our plans, but God directs our steps. I had big, exciting, new plans for 2020 as I do before every new year, but my plans were changed. Our daughter Leah fell on the ice and snow in the driveway at her house, and it broke the fibula in her right ankle! The orthopedic doctor recommended surgery. After doing research, Leah found out this is the common treatment for her injury, a spiral fracture. She is now waiting on a call from the surgery nurse to schedule it. My #1 priority for the new year is to help our daughter as much as possible. Nothing else matters right now! Please pray for Leah's complete, speedy healing. Have your plans for the new year been changed, too? Don't be afraid, because He is a good God! As we look to God, obeying and trusting Him daily, we will experience His many blessings this coming year. God has already gone ahead of us into 2020, and has good plans for you, Leah, and me!
What do you need help with in your life right now? Finances? A troubled marriage? A prodigal spouse or child? Health issues? A toxic, narcissistic relationship with a family member, in-law, neighbor, or friend? Problems at work with your boss, a co-worker, or customers? Whatever it is, God is here for you. He loves you and wants to help you. Today I share a reading from Melody Beattie's book, The Language of Letting Go. The very hard lesson God has been teaching me this year is learning to let go and let God, trusting Him. I have cried so many tears, but I simply need to let go and trust Him--and ask for God's help. God is your and my Helper.
I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving Day celebration with your family and friends. Today's episode is about gratitude. Yesterday I recorded a Gratitude Challenge video, thanking the people in my life who I love and who are such a gift to me. You can watch this at YouTube at My Gratitude Challenge. In today's podcast, I share 1 Thessalonians 5:18 in the Contemporary English Version which reads, "Whatever happens, keep thanking God because of Jesus Christ. This is what God wants you to do." This can be a hard pill to swallow, because of the hardships, stresses, and heartaches you and I may be going through. And yet God commands us to be thankful. He is good and worthy to be thanked and praised.
It's hard to believe that Christmas is almost here, isn't it? The new year 2020 is almost upon us! At the end of each year, I set aside time to pray and reflect on the past year: what went well and what didn't. To evaluate if I achieved my dreams and goals. I also pray about the new year, asking for God's protection, guidance, and help for me and my family. In this podcast, I share about dreaming bigger with God, getting His vision and goals for your new year. What hindered or stopped you from your dreams and goals this year? What new habits do you need to develop? What do you need to maintain? Where do you want to go (traveling)? What do you want to do? Let's believe for an exciting new 2020! Join me for my online event, 20/20 Vision for Speakers & Writers, at www.bethjones.net/vision.
Our daughter Leah just moved out of our house to be close to her new job as assistant baker in another city, about an hour north of us. This week God is teaching me the hard lesson of letting go. I've also been cleaning, organizing, and de-cluttering my home and office. It is so freeing. Right now it is fall in Missouri. It is cooler and the trees' leaves are turning glorious shades of orange, yellow, red, and brown. There is a powerful quote: "Autumn shows us how beautiful it is to let things go." We need to let go and let God, trusting Him with people and things in our lives. Who or what do you need to let go of?
Do you have quiet time with God each day? Each morning after breakfast, Beth Jones drinks a hot, creamy cup of coffee, prays, and reads the Bible. She calls this her "Coffee with God" time. This is not a rigid, religious ritual, but a relaxing time to spend time with God to hear His still, small voice and to get His wisdom and direction for the busy, hectic day ahead. You don't have to spend hours to do this, and it doesn't have to be early in the morning. It can be any time, day or night. You can include worship and praise, journaling, making a to-do list, and even jump start your speaking and writing. Be encouraged by Beth for God to become your daily GPS on this exciting, sometimes scary, adventure called life.