Are you hiding your talents?

Are you hiding your talents?

While I don’t believe in fortunes, I do believe in God and that He can speak however He wants. (Remember the adorable movie, O God II about God (starring George Burns) appearing and speaking to a little girl, Tracy Richards (Louanne Sirota), in a Chinese restaurant? He wanted Tracy to help promote Him to the world with the slogan, “Think God.”)

Yesterday, when I ordered Chinese for lunch, this is  what my fortune cookie read: “Use your talents. That’s what they are intended for.”

what my fortune cookie read
what my fortune cookie read

Are you using your talents or hiding them, like the servant who buried his master’s in Matthew 25:14-30?  

Busy business woman in office - Foter.com
Busy business woman in office
Foter.com

You’re probably familiar with this story in the Bible. A man was going on a trip and gave his three servants some of his talents, each according to their ability: he gave one 5 talents, another two, and another one talent. The first two multiplied their talents to 10 and 4, but the third servant dug in the ground and hid his talent.

After a long time, the master came back and learned what had happened to his property. He commended the first and second servants who used their talents wisely, but rebuked and punished the third servant who buried his talents:

 Then the servant with the one bag of silver came and said, ‘Master, I knew you were a harsh man, harvesting crops you didn’t plant and gathering crops you didn’t cultivate. I was afraid I would lose your money, so I hid it in the earth. Look, here is your money back.’
“But the master replied, ‘You wicked and lazy servant! If you knew I harvested crops I didn’t plant and gathered crops I didn’t cultivate,why didn’t you deposit my money in the bank? At least I could have gotten some interest on it.’
“Then he ordered, ‘Take the money from this servant, and give it to the one with the ten bags of silver.  To those who use well what they are given, even more will be given, and they will have an abundance. But from those who do nothing, even what little they have will be taken away. Now throw this useless servant into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’”

The servant hid his talents because of fear. Is fear holding you back from using yours? God doesn’t want you afraid. He will help you, if you step out in faith in obedience to Him. 

fear

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”~Deuteronomy 31:6

God has given you and me unique, special talents that He wants us to use for His glory and to help other people. For me, that is speaking and writing.

Beth Jones, International Speaker/Author
Beth Jones, speaking at Aglow in Olathe, KS

For you, it might be drawing art, singing, performing drama, leading people, having medical skills, playing an instrument, organizing, decorating, being good at crunching numbers, building a big business, or any number of things. Whatever your talent(s) is, don’t hide it. Shine your light for others to see.

 “God has given each of you some special abilities; be sure to use them to help each other, passing on to others God’s many kinds of blessings. Are you called to preach? Then preach as though God himself were speaking through you. Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies so that God will be glorified through Jesus Christ—to him be glory and power forever and ever.” ~ 1 Peter 4:10-11, TLB

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How To Write Your Book Fast: Making Your Writing Dreams Come True
Cover art: Copyright 2016 Beth Jones

Is your talent writing? Have you always wanted to write a book? Learn how to make your writing dreams come true. In my new book, How to write your book fast: Making your writing dreams come true, I share my tips and resources for how I’ve written 15 books, many of them Amazon Best Sellers. Find out more here.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A broken hallelujah

It is Sunday morning and I had my coffee and creamer, and will get ready for church soon.

I feel conflicted about how this week has gone: I had my book signing at The Carpenter’s Cup bookstore, was able to spend time this week with our kids and grandkids (eating pizza at Mazzio’s and taking our granddaughters bowling), joined a ladies’ Bible study on Priscilla Shirer’s book The Armor of God, but Ray and I are at each other’s throats again, which started this time over a stupid ceiling fan not working.

Heather & Leah--Mazzio's Pizza
Heather & Leah–Mazzio’s Pizza

 

pepperoni-pizza
pepperoni-pizza

 

Annabelle & Violet bowling
Annabelle & Violet bowling

I think life is just that way, though. As Charles Dickens’ book A Tale of Two Cities says, “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…”. A mixture of the good and bad. All of it sacred and for the purpose of glorifying God. 

woman stretching arms
woman worshipping

This week as I was driving in the car (my prayer-mobile), I was worshipping, listening to K-Love radio station.

Even though my heart felt heavy about some things, I chose to praise and worship God. I gave Him my broken hallelujah, the name of a song by The Afters. You can watch the YouTube video here: Broken Hallelujah

The lyrics say:

I can barely stand right now.
Everything is crashing down,
And I wonder where you are.
I try to find the words to pray.
I don’t always know what to say,
But you’re the one that can hear my heart.
Even though I don’t know what your plan is,
I know you make beauty from these ashes.
I’ve seen joy and I’ve seen pain.
On my knees, I call your name.
Here’s my broken hallelujah.
With nothing left to hold onto,
I raise these empty hands to you.
Here’s my broken, here’s my broken,
Hallelujah [x3]
(Here’s my broken)
Hallelujah
You know the things that have brought me here.
You know the story of every tear.
‘Cause you’ve been here from the very start.
Even though I don’t know what your plan is,
I know you make beauty from these ashes.
I’ve seen joy and I’ve seen pain…”
woman looking out window
woman looking out window

Yes, God knows the story of every tear you shed and He makes beauty from ashes

Keep your praise and worship on…in the best of times and in the worst of times. Focus on Jesus. All these things are wrapping up soon. (Revelation 1:7)

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Thy will be done

woman looking out window
woman looking out window

This morning I was going to the dollar store and heard the beautiful song by Hillary Song, Thy Will, on K-Love radio station. The instruments are just incredible. 

It struck me because right now I’m going through some emotional storms:

  • My deeply troubled marriage;
  • Our uncertain rental house situation (the landlord is selling the house, and we’re not sure where we’re going to live yet);
  • Financial problems that seem to have no end in sight;
  • Our grown kids’ various struggles;
  • Many questions about exactly what God is doing in my life right now. 

I parked our car and just listened to the song, worshipping and praying.

Then when I came out of the store, Third Day’s song I need a miracle was playing.

I prayed,  “Yes, God, right now I need a couple of miracles!”

The Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and whispered, “You are the miracle.”

It took me aback, but this is so true. God has done amazing, miraculous things in my life. 

Jesus is my Lord, Savior, Healer, Deliverer, Strength, Strong Tower, Rock, Best Friend, Husband, Mighty God and King. I give Him all the glory for what He’s done in my life. 

I know God is El Roi, and He sees me. (Genesis 16:13). He has goodness in store for me. (Jeremiah 29:11) It’s hard to count it all joy, and I’m distracted by the noise in my life. But He wants to use me in miraculous ways for HIS glory. I need to just trust Him, because God is faithful

Below are some of the lyrics to Thy Will, that really blessed me.

Yes, Lord, Thy will be done in my life. 

 

Part of Thy Will Lyrics

…Somehow I ended up here

I don’t wanna’ think

I may never understand

that my broken heart

may be part of Your plan…

I know you’re good But this don’t feel good right now

And I know you think Of things I could never think about

It’s hard to count it all joy

Distracted by the noise

Just trying to make sense Of all your promises

Sometimes I gotta stop

Remember that you’re God And I am not

So Thy will be done Thy will be done Thy will be done

Like a child on my knees all that comes to me is

Thy will be done Thy will be done Thy will

I know you see me

I know you hear me,

Lord Your plans are for me

Goodness you have in store

I know you hear me

I know you see me,

Lord Your plans are for me

Goodness you have in store

So Thy will be done Thy will be done.

 

Third Day Video: I need a miracle.

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