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Still time for your (God’s) bucket list



This year has sped by, hasn’t it? Again.

The older you are, the faster the years go. You grasp at time, but it rushes through your hands like turbulent rapids in a river, and there’s no stopping it. That’s why it’s important to be present in the moments each day and to savor your time with loved ones. To live intentionally.



Christmas is around the corner and the new year. I think it’s important to live each day fully, and there is still time to get things accomplished this year. What things?

Writing a to-do list

Writing a to-do list

Whatever matters most, what is important to you personally–and to God. I highly recommend reading the book What If God Wrote Your Bucket List? 52 Things You Don’t Want To Miss.

family pic

family pic


coffee pic

coffee pic


fall decos

fall decos


For me, that would be:

  • Using my spiritual gifts for God and living out my purpose daily;
  • Working on healing my marriage to Ray;
  • Staying connected with our 3 beautiful daughters and 4 precious grandkids (soon to be 5!);
  • Having my “coffee with God” time each morning, praying, journaling, & reading the Bible;
  • Walking/jogging at the track and eating healthy to become fitter;
  • Enjoying this new fall season (pumpkin scented candles, mm; pretty sunflowers decos);
  • Traveling to new places;
  • Being an example of Christ to all those God brings across my path each day.

What about you? What is left on your bucket list that you’d like to do before this year ends?

fall trail

fall trail


Blog, Ebooks, Faith, Fitness, Homemaking, Homeschooling, Marriage, Parenting, prayer, Speaking, Spiritual Gifts, Travel

Celebrate my birthday with free eBooks. Reflections on Life, Love & Laughter.



Tomorrow is my birthday. I thought you could celebrate with me. I’m giving away some free eBooks, so please share on your fave social media sites:

  • The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes (on the fairy tale Cinderella, and your big dreams coming true and walking in your unique purpose)
  • The Call of Wisdom: Teaching Your Children at Home (our family’s homeschooling journey–the good and the bad!)
  • Showers of Blessings: Affirmations for Christian Women Entrepreneurs (how God wants your life and business blessed and you to succeed)
  • Storm Tossed (my only fiction book).

These eBooks will be FREE from midnight tonight (September 19, 2015) until midnight tomorrow (September 20, 2015). You can find them at my Amazon Author page by clicking here.

I’m also going to record a podcast today (you can subscribe to my podcast at Itunes, “Beth Jones International Speaker Official Podcast”), and I thought I’d write a blog post, Reflections on Life, Love & Laughter On My Birthday.

This is VERY, VERY long—my life long lessons—but I think worth the read! THIS IS VERY RANDOM, IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER!

  • One of the most important things I’ve learned is that God is love and God is good, no matter what bad things are happening. He’s always there for you and will never leave you.
  • Family is one of the most precious gifts from God. Love them. Spend time with them. Have fun. 
  • My children and grandchildren are the greatest treasures God has ever given me. Heather is my special present from God. Leah is my undeserved gift from God. Eden is my bonus gift from God. Our grandchildren are the cherry on top of my hot fudge sundae ice cream. 🙂
  • Keep short accounts. Forgive daily and quickly. Unforgiveness makes you bitter and resentful, and keeps you a prisoner. 
  • I love to wear pj’s and fuzzy socks and jeans with holes in them. I also love cute shoes. My signature talk is The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes, about the fairy tale of Cinderella, fulfilling your big dreams and walking in your own “glass slippers” (your unique purpose). 
  • Marriage is hard. This is my 3rd one, and Ray’s second. We’ve managed to not kill each other after 23 years together of arguing. But he’s still here. He’s a good man, even if he does drive me crazy sometimes.
  • I’m a boots and flip flop kind of girl.
  • I’m very stubborn, Very. You can’t change my mind, once I’ve made it up!
  • Watch children. They have simple, pure faith in God, unhindered by doubt and unbelief. The faith of a child can move mountains. They laugh a lot. They play. They’re so wise and good, and can teach us so much.
  • My best memories have come from traveling. I want to travel all over the world. Go somewhere new. “The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving. I didn’t want to destroy anything or anybody. I just wanted to slip quietly out the back door, without causing any fuss or consequences, and then not stop running until I reached Greenland.”–Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
  • I could eat Mexican every single day of my life. I love chips and salsa. Also Mediterranean, grilled steak, and Ray’s Cajun grilled chicken.
  • I’ll never feel skinny enough. I used to be anorexic and borderline bulemic. But your weight doesn’t define you. You are beautiful just the way you are.
  • Sometimes bad things happen to good people for no understandable reason. Sometimes great things happen to evil people and they seem to live charmed, blessed lives. I don’t get it, either. 
  • I lose things a lot. My cell phone, my ATM card, my driver’s license. Then I panic and my family has to help me find them. I also forget to charge my iPhone and my family gets frustrated that they can’t get ahold of me, so what is the point of having it?
  • The ocean is my place of peace and refilling. We used to go to the beach every summer when I was a child, for vacation. I live in the midwest now, so I rarely get to go, but I crave the beach. “The sea does not reward those who are too anxious, too greedy, or too impatient. To dig for treasures shows not only impatience and greed, but lack of faith. Patience, patience, patience, is what the sea teaches. Patience and faith. One should lie empty, open, choiceless as a beach—waiting for a gift from the sea.”–Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea
  • My lifelong battle has been with anger and fear. Many times, some type of fear is underneath anger. 
  • I hate snakes, spiders, mosquitoes, flies, gnats , insects, and other bugs. The only good ones are dead ones. I’m married to a man who loves them. Go figure. 
  • There’s a lot of evil in the world and it’s getting darker. But God is always good and in the end HE wins. I can’t wait to see the devil burning in the lake of fire for all the pain he’s caused me and the ones I love. 
  • Cats, horses, dolphins, and wild animals are fascinating and hilarious. God is an amazing creator. Sometimes I really wish we had a cat again (that didn’t pee in the house!), but we rent here and can’t have pets. One day we will have one again. Our daughter Leah really wants one.
  • I love sunsets, sunrises, the moon, the stars and all creation. Black holes in space fascinate me. Every day notice the beauty of God’s creation. God is an amazing artist! No sunrise or sunset is the same.
  • I was a flight attendant for a short while and loved it, but never saw my family so I resigned. It never ceased to amaze me every time the plane took off or landed. God gave man the intelligence to create something that flies like a bird. Go on a trip and fly somewhere.
  • A rainbow always gives me hope of God’s faithfulness. I saw one this week. God never lies. You can always count on Him.
  • My husband needs a new job. He’s in daily excruciating pain in his back and knees from lifting obese patients. Please pray for him. In the 23 years I’ve been married to him, I’ve never seen a job do to him what this one has. He also hates change so please pray he will apply places. He is a work horse, and has always worked so hard to provide for our family. May God abundantly bless him for this. 
  • I never get tired of spending time with Heather or Leah. They’re not just my daughters, but my friends. Talk to and listen to your kids. Listen to their hearts. Pray for them.
  • Prayer changes things. Your prayers and faith in Christ have power and authority. Don’t stop praying. Prayers can be answered beyond your lifetime, because God isn’t limited by time, space, or geography. 
  • Some people don’t or won’t ever like you. Don’t even try. Get over it and don’t worry about it. There’s a lot of people who think I’m just a B. I answer to one person-God. Seek to please God, not people. 
  • Some people seem destined for wealth and success, and everything they touch turns to gold. Still trying to figure it out. For some people, money is their god. I’ve seen this in our own family and it’s very sad. What an empty existence. 
  • Money isn’t everything or can’t make you happy or fulfilled, but it sure helps. Ray jokes that he’d like God to test him on the “Money can’t make you happy” theory.
  • Money has been one of the most stressful things in my life, and I think it is for most people today.
  • Your health is so important. You can’t go anywhere without your body or fulfill your purpose if you’re sick. Take care of you. Eat healthy, exercise, drink water, rest, have fun, destress. It’s taken me a lifetime to realize this. My dad, who had an almost fatal brain aneurysm in his 30’s, always used to say without your health, you have nothing, and to always take care of yourself and be thankful for your health and mind. 
  • I’ve been hurt more by Christians and Christian leaders than non-Christians. What a shame. Model Christ. God is love. God doesn’t act like people do.
  • A black, ultra-fine Sharpie pen is my favorite pen in the whole world. I should buy stock in them or be their spokeswoman. 
  • I love to speak, write, travel, read, blog, and watch chic flics. Ray calls me an enigma because I love to laugh and cry a lot.
  • I’m the author of 10 books which you can buy here at my website in my Estore. This year I’ve been getting them uploaded to Amazon for the Kindle. I’m almost through getting all 10 of them on there! God dragged me into public speaking and now I love it!
  • Sometimes if you raise your kids right, they still do wrong. Keep praying for them. God loves them more than you do.
  • A woman’s work is truly never done. There’s always more dishes and laundry to wash. There is no such thing as “I’m just a mom.” It’s the most sacred, important job in the world. 
  • If you’re married, you’re still your own person. Ray is still trying to tame me. After 23 years, he hasn’t figured me out yet and doesn’t understand me! Sometimes men are clueless. Sometimes men are babies. 
  • If you’re single, marriage isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. A man (or woman if you’re a man) will never complete you and fill up that black hole inside you. It’s a God void.
  • God still heals and does miracles today. I’ve seen them in my life and my family’s and others‘.
  • Women can be so catty. But some women are friends for life. I’m so thankful for my female friends. 
  • Sometimes it’s easier to make friends with online friends than friends in real life. 
  • Some of the richest people in life are financially poor, like those I saw in Haiti and Africa. 
  • Learn something new everyday for life. Life is an amazing teacher. Pay attention, eyes and heart wide open. God has surprises in store for you and me. 
  • Learn lessons from the butterfly. Have you ever seen a stressed out, worried, or angry butterfly? No. Butterflies are free and happy.
  • I love hearts. Heart jewelry, to paint and draw hearts. Listen to God’s heart, people’s hearts, your heart. 
  • I love Hello Kitty stuff. What do you collect? People get old because they stop playing and having fun. 
  • I hate to cook. Poor Ray. He loves to eat. I think he should have married my sister Maria or some other woman who’s a great cook. I’ve never mastered Ray’s mom’s fried chicken or chicken dumplings. 
  • I’ll never drink shots of Tequila again. Never. 
  • I’m not a teetotaler. I don’t believe drinking alcohol is a sin for Christians. I have seen alcohol and drugs destroy people’s lives. I prefer red wine over white. I believe Jesus turned the water into wine, not grape juice, and that he drank wine occasionally. I rarely drink, but enjoy a glass of wine or a mixed drink with Ray over dinner occasionally. 
  • The red male cardinal and mourning doves are my favorite bird. I love watching birds feed in our sunroom here.
  • My dad wasn’t perfect. I grew up in a very dysfunctional home. But I love my dad and think about and pray for him a lot. Ray is our three daughters’ hero. They are all a daddy’s girl. 
  • I used to be horribly shy, worst than our daughter Leah. I was really quiet and afraid to talk to people. Ray jokes those were the good old days, because now I never stop talking. People can change over their lifetime. How do you need to change? Ask God to help you.
  • My favorite cake is yellow cake with chocolate frosting. Chocolate anything. Chocolate makes life better. 
  • I love the Jews. I cried going into Jerusalem and leaving. It was my dream come true. The Jews are God’s chosen people. Israel belongs to the Jews, because God gave them the land. Pray for Israel and the Jews. America needs to stay Israel’s closest ally.
  • I’m terrible at names but remember faces. Make people feel important. Work on being kind. Kindness is strength and God’s heart.
  • I’m blunt as hell. Ray describes it as “the bull in the china shop” approach. I offend people easily, not on purpose.
  • People irritate me a lot! People can be so annoying. Sometimes I feel like slapping people good. 
  • I am very impatient. Very. So God has me waiting a lot. Sometimes the best things come when you wait. The waiting is worth it, so hang on. 
  • I worry too much, especially about my kids and grandkids. Worry is unbelief. Trust God. 
  • My eyes are hazel green-brown, but look emerald green with green clothes. 
  • I was born and raised in the south. I still say “y’all” and “I’m fixin’ to go to the store,” despite living in the midwest since my 20’s and still have a southern accent.  As the saying goes, “You can take the girl out of the south, but can never take the south out of the girl.”
  • I miss southern fish fries–fried catfish, cheese grits, hushpuppies. My dad made the best ones and grilled steak, too. 
  • I was raised with prejudice in the south, but hate it. God loves everyone and all are made in His image. No one is better than another person. But some people use prejudice and racism as an excuse to do wrong and for an evil agenda.
  • The Bible is true, even if people think it’s outdated and old-fashioned. Sin is still sin (i.e, abortion, adultery, homosexuality, lesbianism, transgenderism, lying, stealing, idolatry, etc.). We will all answer to God one day. 
  • Babies are innocent and precious. Babies make people happy. We are thankful to have a new baby in our family, our middle daughter Eden’s baby Piper. Eden and Craig named her middle name after mine, Elizabeth. What an honor.
  • Everyone has a purpose. God wants to use your gifts for His glory. I’m just now starting to fulfill my purpose. Don’t wait to pursue yours. 
  • Dreams are fascinating, like a free movie at night. Pass the popcorn, please! God has spoken to me in my dreams to tell me about things to come. My strongest gifts are prophecy and discernment. He sometimes gives me prophetic words and/or words of knowledge about people. Pay attention to your dreams at night and in your heart. What’s your big dream? Write a bucket list and then do it before it’s too late. Live with no regrets.
  • I’m addicted to the TV show Lost (about people stuck on the island) and to Periscope. 
  • I have a very off the wall sense of humor. Only my sister Maria gets it, because she’s the same way.  I think God has a great sense of humor. 
  • The ordinary is extraordinary. Make every moment count. Life and time are short. 
  • I’m not a morning person and cheerful morning people annoy me. 
  • If we could see the warfare between angels and demons, we’d be amazed. Angels do exist because Ray and I have encountered them. Demons do, too. They study humans and satan’s job is to steal, kill and destroy. If he can’t kill you, he’ll try to knock you off course and ineffective for God. 
  • Somewhere on the earth I think dinosaurs exist. And maybe BigFoot because Ray saw him once. I believe unicorns and pegasus are a possibility in heaven. I believe heaven has animals, and I want a horse, a dolphin, wild big cats, a waterfall, the ocean, and pretty flowers by my mansion in heaven. 
  • Some people have high intelligence but not a lick of common sense. People do dumb things sometimes and then wonder why things turn out the way they do.
  • I don’t know why I was sexually and physically abused as a child, or bad things have happened in my life, but God has used it to minister to people. God will give you beauty for ashes. He doesn’t waste any pain.
  • Some people thrive off drama or strife. 
  • Sometimes I feel all alone, like I’m on the outside looking in. 
  • I don’t really understand love, what it is, or how to give it. I love my kids and would die for them if necessary, but don’t know how to love or be loved by a man. 
  • Let people in. Let down your walls. Trust. Allow yourself to love and be loved. I’m still working on this. Especially with Ray. 
  • Let go. Let God. 
  • I love my husband’s hands. He is so patient and I can talk to him about anything. Every time he says, “It’s going to be okay,” it is. That comforts me. In many ways, my husband is my source of strength. I’m very thankful for him–even if we do have “intense domestic fellowship.”
  • Take risks. Have adventures. Love. Have fun. Listen. Take pics. Paint. Write. Write your story and your book. Be unique you. Leave a godly legacy; leave your mark here, your imprints on people’s hearts after you die. I don’t want to have to hire mourners for my funeral, but want people so glad I was here and they knew me. Create a life you love. 
Me, at Canterybury Hills vineyard with Ray in Jefferson City, MO

Me, at Canterybury Hills vineyard with Ray in Jefferson City, MO

Have a blessed day and be sure to enjoy my birthday free gifts here tomorrow, September 20, and share with your family and friends!


Blog, Faith, Homeschooling, Marriage, Parenting, prayer, Speaking, Spiritual Gifts, Writing

Feed my sheep

I’m sitting here in our front entry room, where I often pray, read the Bible, read good books, journal, drink green tea (it used to be Cokes®!), sleep when Ray snores loudly (I can’t function well without good sleep), do leg lifts and push-ups, and once in a blue moon entertain, like when my friend Diane Bishop stopped by this week to share about the Melaleucha Power Pack she’s using that gives her extra energy (and other benefits). I decided to write a random blog post.

Today I went hog wild enjoyed a salad and 1 1/2 pieces of a Calzone at Mazzio’s Pizza with our oldest daughter Heather and our youngest daughter Leah. What’s so cool is that last night Leah was wanting a Calzone and today God provided it ~ Heather treated us to lunch when she met us for some paperwork for Leah’s car, that Heather blessed her with when Heather bought her new (2011) car. Did you know God cares about even the little things in your heart? 🙂

Leah's car

Leah’s car

I really enjoyed the meals with our girls today. Hearing about Heather’s [stressful!] week at work as an office manager. Watching Leah enjoy her Calzone (I enjoyed it, too!). The place was packed with people, then they all suddenly left. I guess to go back to work.

It’s so nice to know that as the CEO of my speaking/writing business, I don’t have to worry about long lunches! I can make my own schedule!

Today I’ve also been thinking about our middle daughter, Eden, who’s in her second trimester of pregnancy. She finds out the gender soon. I think the baby is a girl, but could be wrong. (She wants a girl!)

Eden's baby bump

Eden’s baby bump

Ray is probably secretly hoping for another boy, since he’s outnumbered by females with 3 daughters and 2 granddaughters. He was very happy when our grandson Jacob (Eden’s son) was born…finally, a BOY in the family!

Our 3 precious grandchildren, Jacob, Annabelle & Violet

Our 3 precious grandchildren, Jacob, Annabelle & Violet

And yes, he’s ALL boy! It fascinates me to watch Jacob making loud car and motorcycle noises with his mouth, crashing into and jumping on furniture, and making any object possible into a gun. Whatever gender the baby is, we’re praying for a healthy baby.

Eden and her son Jacob

Eden and her son Jacob

Ray got some bad news today. Spock died. Ray is a huge Star Trek and sci-fi fan/geek. Ray also ran a call at work last night, where a doctor in town fell down the stairs and died of a brain injury. He was carrying a piece of furniture up the stairs for his wife, when he tripped and fell. I could tell these incidents today was making Ray contemplate his own death one day. 

For this God is our God forever and ever, and He will be our guide even to death. ~ Psalm 48:14

Jobs. Cars. Babies. Death. Life ebbs and flows, its currents strong and at times, unpredictable.

I see Jesus on the shore, cooking a breakfast of grilled fish for His disciples, weary and hungry from a long night.

“Peter, do you love Me?”

“Beth, do you love Me?”

“Yes, Lord, You know that I love You.”

“Feed My sheep.”

I hold out empty hands to Him, palms upward. 

“God, what do I have to offer?”


I am Your servant, Lord. Here I am, send me.

Beth Jones, January 2015

Me , January 2015