I run

I run
I run

Today is National Running Day. I want to celebrate together with you. It’s held each year on the first Wednesday in June, when runners everywhere declare their passion for running. 

I’m definitely not a fast runner, but I walk daily and jog (slowly), slowly building my endurance and stamina in hopes one day I can run fast! (Hey, don’t laugh!)

My goal is to walk/jog at least one 5K this year, hopefully more. Several years ago, I walked my first 5K’s and would love to do it again!

In January this year I radically changed my lifestyle, eating healthier, exercising, and drinking water instead of Coke. Weather permitting, I walk daily at the track in town, and recently our daughter Leah joined me.

The Bible says in Philippians 3:13-14, The Message: “I’m not saying that I have all this together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wonderously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong. By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal where God is beckoning us onward–to Jesus. I’m off and running and I’m not turning back.”

I love that, don’t you?

While I’m certainly no expert, either, I do have goals and today I want to share some tips for personal and business success, using the topic of running:

1. Who or what are you running from? God? Your past? Sins you’ve committed? If you are under shame and condemnation for something you’ve done wrong, bring it to the Cross. God will forgive you if you ask Him. (1 John 1:9)

The Bible says that God’s mercy is new every morning. Jesus died for your sins and if you have a relationship with Him as your savior, His forgiveness is complete.

Are you running from a relationship with your spouse, a child, a friend, or someone at work? Pray and ask God to help you love that person with His love and for His grace in dealing with him or her. You may not have the answer for how to resolve the problem, but God does. 

2. Who or what are you running to? God? Are you running to your spouse-or someone who is not your spouse when you’re hurting? (which is dangerous) Your child? A friend? Sometimes we may go to a friend talking about all our problems, when instead we need to go to God or our spouse. 

Are you running to drugs or alcohol? Food? Shopping? Money/wealth as your god? God is the only one who can fill up that black hole inside of you. 

3. What are you running for? What is your purpose? When I began exercising in January 2015, it was for one purpose: for fitness and health. I can’t fulfill the purpose for which God created me (speaking, writing books, traveling/missions) if I don’t feel well or if I become sick.

Losing weight was a side benefit to my new routine. I now have an additional goal, which is to reach my idea weight (I have 20 pounds to go!). 

I want to run this race of life well so that when I meet God face to face, I will hear from Him, “Well done thou good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:23)  I want to accomplish the purpose for which God made me. What about you?

4. When will you start running? When will you do what God has called you to do? It’s time! Even though I knew I needed to eat healthy, drink water, and exercise regularly, I had so many excuses for why I didn’t. My extra weight was “baby fat.” Our daughter Leah is 20 years old now, so that was no longer an excuse!

I was “too tired” to exercise. Now that I eat healthy, drink water, and exercise, I have much more energy!

What hindrances or obstacles are keeping you from your purpose and calling? For years, I was too scared to speak in front of people. God had to drag me into it, and now I LOVE it, especially speaking at live events (if you are an event planner or know someone who needs a speaker, contact me here!). 

I didn’t know how to do webinars or to create videos, but I learned. Maybe it’s time for you to do them, too. (I’m very tech challenged, so if I can learn, you can!)

I had never written a book before, but that didn’t stop me. I’ve now written eight books and am writing three more. The one I’m working on now is my first fiction book. Maybe God has told you to write a book, too. Now is the time; this is the year!

What are your excuses? What hindrances or obstacles are in the way of your personal and business success? As Nike says, just do it!

5. Why are you running – from God, from relationships, from problems, from yourself, from your calling and purpose? Identify the root issue. Most likely, it’s fear. Fears keep you and me in a prison and from fulfilling our purpose. God doesn’t want you afraid but to “be strong and courageous.” (Joshua 1:9)

Perfectionism will trip you up. Sometimes it’s a self-worth issue. Or you may be trying to compete with others, comparing yourself with others and feeling jealous, envious, and “less than.” God doesn’t want you to feel this way. He made you unique, wonderfully and fearfully. (Psalm 139:14)

When I started walking/jogging in January this year, my reason was for fitness/health. A side (wonderful) benefit was losing weight.

Now I’ve set a new goal, to lose 20 more pounds to reach my ideal weight, and to walk/jog at least one 5K this year.

It’s important to have dreams and goals in your life and to achieve them. My motto is, “Dream big because we serve a big God.” More than anything, my desire is to do God’s will. 

British athelete/runner Eric Liddell said in the movie Chariots of Fire, “When I run, I feel His pleasure.”

That’s why I want to run in this race of life, too–to feel God’s pleasure. To glorify Jesus Christ. Are you feeling God’s pleasure in what you’re doing right now? You can start today.

6. How are you running? Are you a tortoise or a hare? Are you running slow, lagging behind God–procrastinating, putting things off, blaming, being a perfectionist? Procrastination and perfectionism will trip you up and will keep you from fulfilling your purpose.

Or maybe like me, you’re like a racehorse, rarin’ to get out of the starting gate. You were BORN TO RUN FAST, like Secretariat the race horse. You are serious about the calling of God on your life and you know you have no time to waste. But sometimes, you run out ahead of God! 

Maybe you’re busy, busy, busy. You stay busy, trying to fill up that empty hole inside of you.  But staying busy doesn’t always mean being productive. Jesus said apart from Him, we can do nothing. (John 15:5)

We have to make sure that we’re in sync with God, flowing in rhythm with His heartbeat, as my friend Doreen Penner says.

When you first start walking or running, you have to pace yourself, not going too slow or too fast. You have to listen to your body. It will give you signals. 

God does this, too. He speaks to you in His still, small voice. In prayer. Through His eternal word. From a spouse, child, or friend. 

Little nudges and whispers. Dreams. Signs. Confirmations. Learn to listen carefully and obey God’s still, small voice and you’ll experience His blessings.

7. Finally, to walk and run, you need the right equipment. When I first started walking this year, I started out just with what I already had: t-shirts, yoga pants, and my aerobic shoes that I’d bought for walking and for our daughter Heather’s Zumba class.

My goal is to buy some really good running shoes to walk/jog at least one 5K this year. A good pair starts at about $75 and up. The best stores help you with fitting, including watching you walk/jog.

I did buy some walking/running clothes earlier this year–a black, short sleeved walking shirt and some black running pants that are a little “stretchy” and very comfortable (both light weight, so I won’t get too hot). Changing into this outfit and my walking/running shoes gets me into the “mindset” of discipline for walking/jogging.

You don’t want to be uncomfortable while walking/running, and I highly recommend getting some good walking/running shoes. You can’t walk or run in boots or stilettos!

What “equipment” do you need to fulfill God’s calling and purpose for your life? Maybe you want to be a paid speaker. Try Toastmaster’s or other professional training. You might get coaching to learn how to write a book. (I offer coaching for beginner speakers, writers, and entrepreneurs.) Getting a college degree may help you advance in your field of study. If you aren’t sure about college, dip your little toe in the water and just enroll in one class. Attend webinars and telecalls. Continually read good books. I believe we are to be life-long learners. This will help you to become “equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:17)

God has unique shoes Divinely-designed just for you!  Just as no one else’s foot could fit in
Cinderella’s slipper, no one else can walk in your unique purpose

Today, let’s celebrate National Running Day together. Use the hashtag #nationalrunningday on Twitter and social media. Get out there and walk, jog or run. (Or if you don’t enjoy that, swim, ride a bike, skate, dance, or do an exercise video).

You can download an app to track your miles to contribute to the charity you want. There’s resources and deals at the website, National Running Day

Let’s also run this race of life well, reaching for the high prize of Jesus Christ. No more holding back. God and I are cheering you onto the finish line. You can do it! 

I created a video blog (called a vlog) covering the same tips in this blog post with my web cam today. You can view it by clicking here

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Getting closer to launch!

I’m SUPER excited as it’s getting closer to my eBook launch time for my new eBook, The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes! My amazing graphic designer, Christine Dupre, finished the cover and did a BEAUTIFUL job!

I took an informal vote on Facebook and the cover below won the most votes. What do you think of it?

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes Design by Christine Dupre Copyright 2015 Beth Jones www.BethJones.net
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes
Design by Christine Dupre
Copyright 2015 Beth Jones www.BethJones.net

I’m using the other cover option Christine designed for my next eBook in this series called The Cinderella Story: The Power of Dreams. It was so hard to choose between the two, as they are so amazing and the vote was close. So I’m using BOTH!

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes Design by Christine Dupre Copyright 2015 Beth Jones www.BethJones.net
Cover for my next eBook
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes
Design by Christine Dupre
Copyright 2015 Beth Jones www.BethJones.net

My editor/formatter, Hanne Moon with Heritage Press Publications, has my manuscript. She’s waiting on the efile from the converter and it’s being converted into an eBook now and in mobi format for KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) on Amazon. You can independently publish on KDP to reach potentially millions of readers!

This is one of the fastest books I’ve ever written. I wrote it in 4 days!

Although I already had a lot of content from my signature talk with the same  name, I had to do research, find Scriptures, write more and pull it all together. I didn’t think I could write it that fast, but God helped me and I did it! Woot!

My writing/business coach, Shelley Hitz
My writing/business coach, Shelley Hitz

I’m in my writing/business coach Shelley Hitz‘s Author Audience Academy 3-month writers’ training, and she has motivated us to write our books quickly.

Shelley is a successful Christian speaker/author, who’s written over 35 books and her husband CJ has written books. She said together, they earn enough in royalties for their eBooks on Amazon to pay their basic bills! You can find her books at Amazon here.

Shelley did say during the summer, sales tend to slow down so she has other income streams, such as speaking and coaching. But when I heard she had this much success from eBooks on Amazon, I knew she was onto something and that I had to take her training! And I LOVE it! She’s an amazing instructor and coach.

Some of the other students in Shelley’s training program already have their eBooks live on Amazon, such as Lucille Zimmerman’s What Does God Say About Suffering, Ruth Snyder’s Learn Twitter: 10 Beginning Steps, and Mel Edwards’ The Bold Way: Find, Claim, Live Your Truth.

I can’t wait for mine to go live to share it with you! I’ll let you know as soon as it’s ready!

What favorite books/eBooks are you reading right now? Leave your comments below.

 

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The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes a success!

Shoes & jewelry decoration on tables The Cinderella Story conference
Shoes & jewelry decoration on tables
The Cinderella Story conference

“God was there.”

“Excellent, loved it!”

“Content was amazing and just right amount, no overload!”

“Great vendors!”

“Food was delicious!”

“God’s anointing was on you, Beth!”

“I love this location. Had no idea it was so nice!”

“A fun event!”

This was some of the feedback from The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes women’s conference on Saturday, September 20, at The DoubleTree Hotel in Overland Park, Kansas. 

I was able to speak at a live event and share the message God put on my heart. We prayed and ministered to women there. God’s Holy Spirit was present. It was a  success! Thank you, Jesus!

A big thank you to my hard working husband Ray, our daughters Heather and Leah who helped me so much, Ruth my pastor and sound person at the event, our amazing vendors Shelby Guilford and Janean Lindner of Origami Owl custom jewelry and Carol Gometz of Thirty-One Gifts, and our wonderful sponsorsWithout all of you, I couldn’t have done this. Thank you SO much!

When I told my anointed jewelry artist friend Jennifer Whiddon about the idea for this Cinderella event, she was so excited and began brainstorming the idea for my speaking presentation title: The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes.

Together we decided the hook would be a funky dress and shoes, something unique and different ~ because Cinderella felt different from everyone else. She didn’t think she’d be able to go to the ball and have fun, like her stepmother and stepsisters were going to. Unloved, abused, and rejected by them, she always felt like she was on the outside looking in, the way I’ve always felt.

Yet God didn’t create us to fit in, but to stand out. To lead. To be women of influence and impact. As believers, we are a peculiar people – a light in a dark world. Cinderella was chosen to be the beautiful bride by the Prince, just as we are chosen by our Prince Jesus to be His beautiful bride.

I looked for weeks for a funky dress and wanted one that was assymetrical (also called a high-low dress). I found the perfect one at Joni’s Fashions in Harrisonville, MO; I love it! (My husband Ray did, too.)  I was drawn to it as soon as I saw it and then Joni went right to it, too, when I asked her about high-low dresses. Even better, it was on sale and the sheer, lacy black jacket that went over it. I love when God helps me get bargains like that!

Me in my funky, high-low Cinderella dress with my beautiful daughters Heather and Leah
Me in my funky, high-low Cinderella dress with my beautiful daughters Heather and Leah

All the women who registered came ~ including one woman from Texas, Deborah Lawrence! What an honor! She and I agreed to get together for lunch soon with her friend/attendee Simmie McMillan while Deborah is still here in Missouri. Deborah was also one of the winners of our generous sponsor give-aways, Harvest of Hope: Living Victoriously Through Adversity by author Dana Arcuri.

Me & attendee Deborah Lawrence Deborah won Dana Arcuri's book, Harvest of Hope
Me & attendee Deborah Lawrence
Deborah won Dana Arcuri’s book, Harvest of Hope

The conference happened to fall on my birthday. Deborah and Simmie really blessed me with these beautiful roses for my birthday at the event – what a delightful surprise!

beautiful roses Deborah & Simmie blessed me with for my birthday Saturday
beautiful roses Deborah & Simmie blessed me with for my birthday Saturday

 My pastor and friend Ruth Christian had everyone in the audience sing Happy Birthday to me, and my small group friends Penny Frisbie, Ruth, Anita Andreas (one of our book author vendors at the conference), and Liz Zacharias gave me a sweet card and a beautiful, silver bracelet with a cute flip flop charm on it – I love it! My fave shoes are boots and flip flops. 

flip flop bracelet
flip flop bracelet

We had AMAZING sponsors for this event, and I couldn’t have done it without them! God bless you, sponsors! God put it into my heart to have a random drawing for a “Cinderella princess pampering day,” which included these gifts:

Our winner for the grand prize winner Cinderella princess pampering day was Barbara Johnson. Congratulations, Barbara! I bought a toy princess tiara and she proudly wore it. She’s going to give it to her granddaughter and said she will love it, too. 

Cinderella princess pampering day grand prize winner Barbara Johnson and me
Cinderella princess pampering day grand prize winner Barbara Johnson and me

Joanie Qualls was the winner of a coaching package from Rochelle Valasek, valued at $250. Congrats, Joanie! I met Joanie at the marriage retreat in Branson, MO. Ray and I are getting together soon with Joanie and her husband. She and I instantly connected at the retreat, and I just love her! Joanie is Barbara’s sister. 

Joanie Qualls, winner of Rochelle Valasek's $250 coaching package, and me
Joanie Qualls, winner of Rochelle Valasek’s $250 coaching package, and me

Anita Andreas was one of our book author vendors and also the winner of these gifts from sponsor Susan Evans

  • Growing Up As A Missionary Kid Ebook
  • Relieving Stress and Tension
  • Don’t Fight Over Finances
Me & Anita Andreas, winner of Susan Evan's giveaways
Me & Anita Andreas, winner of Susan Evan’s giveaways

Our daughter Leah Jones was winner of a bottle of Young Living Essential Oil lavender oil, generously given by our sponsor Phyllis Miller. 

Me with my youngest daughter Leah Jones, winner of sponsor Phyllis Miller's Young Living lavender essential oil
Me with my youngest daughter Leah Jones, winner of sponsor Phyllis Miller’s Young Living lavender essential oil

 My friend and Sunday house church pastor Ruth Christian was the winner of my red DREAM BIG coffee cup and Wild Berry Zinger tea give-away. Ruth was also a great prayer support, encourager, and the sound person for worship and praise at this event – I think the hardest job (other than mine!). 

Ruth Christian, winner of red DREAM BIG coffee cup and Wild Berry Zinger tea, and me
Ruth Christian, winner of red DREAM BIG coffee cup and Wild Berry Zinger tea, and me

I bought this Marilyn Monroe, sterling silver shoe necklace to give away. I secretly coveted this. Inside the package, it reads, “It’s better to be absolutely ridiculous than absolutely boring.” I read it and everyone laughed.

I shared a quote by Marilyn during my speaking presentation: “With the right pair of shoes, a girl can conquer the world.” 

shoe necklace
shoe necklace

Our awesome Thirty-One Gifts vendor Carol Gometz was the winner of this necklace!

Thirty-One Gifts vendor Carol Gometz, winner of the sterling silver shoe necklace, and me
Thirty-One Gifts vendor Carol Gometz, winner of the sterling silver shoe necklace, and me

Our oldest daughter Heather was the winner of Carol’s free drawing – a cute makeup bag. Heather was also available as a vendor for Wild Tree healthy, organic products.

Our daughter Heather, winner of Carol Gometz's Thirty-One Gifts free drawing
Our daughter Heather, winner of Carol Gometz’s Thirty-One Gifts free drawing

Here I am giving my speaking presentation, The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes.

Beth Jones, International Speaker The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes
Beth Jones, International Speaker
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes

I gave each attendee a journal with their handouts. I borrowed the journal idea from my Canadian friend Doreen Penner. During my speaking presentation, we did some writing exercises, which the attendees said they really enjoyed and gave them some new insights into themselves.

journals
journals

This was the center table up front near the speaking podium with my visual aids: a white pumpkin coach and white horse, a red shoe painting that Heather painted with her friends one night, the DREAM BIG red coffee cup, my “Wish upon a star” ceramic container, my new book Promises In The Dark, and Heather’s purple high heels. Heather also gave me the beautiful purple-pink orchids for the table and as a birthday gift. I also put the roses that Deborah and Simmie had given me on there.

Center table The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes
Center table
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes

We had an awesome server Ali- who my friend Penny Frisbie found out was a single mom of a two year old child and a Christian! Ali had been up since 5 a.m. and had a wedding to serve at after our event. I believe single moms have the hardest job in the whole world! God, pour out your blessings on Ali! A shoutout to Ethan, our banquet manager.

I had the event at The DoubleTree Hotel in Overland Park, KS. It is beautiful and if I have more events, I’d LOVE to use this venue again. Tracey Grosdeck is the Senior Catering Manager -she was wonderful to work with!

Our awesome server at the DoubleTree Hotel, Ali
Our awesome server at the DoubleTree Hotel, Ali

The Greek salad for our lunch was delicious.

salad for our lunch
salad for our lunch

The main course was Chicken Florentine Roulade (spinach stuffed chicken breast served with pesto cream sauce and roasted red potatoes). I asked for feedback from the attendees on the event, including the lunch menu. This dish had mixed reviews. Some thought it was delicious. I personally didn’t care for it, but loved the salad and the strawberry cheesecake dessert!

Chicken Florentine Roulade
Chicken Florentine Roulade

Ray found creative, cute shoe cupcakes online, and Heather sponsored and ordered chocolate and vanilla shoe cupcakes at HyVee. The ladies took these home with their goodies bags. The cupcakes were delicious!

chocolate shoe cupcakes
chocolate shoe cupcakes
shoe cupcakes
shoe cupcakes

Each table had decorations of a glass mirror, my shoes and jewelry. I borrowed the idea from my friend Helen, who is an interior decorator and she did the tables for Doreen Penner’s retreat in Manitoba, Canada, when I spoke there several years ago.

table decorations -shoes and jewelry
table decorations -shoes and jewelry

My husband Ray gave me the idea to include combat military boots as one pair of shoes for the table decorations. There are times when God calls his women to war.

boots table decor
boots table decor

Our main vendors for this event were Shelby Guilford and Janean Lindner with Origami Owl custom jewelry. Janean shared her exciting story of how she won her dream car, a VW bug (also my dream car!) through this company. The women had fun shopping at the vendors at the event.

Origami Owl jewelry vendors Shelby Guilford and Janean Lindner
Origami Owl jewelry vendors Shelby Guilford and Janean Lindner

 Carol Gometz was the Thirty-One Gifts vendor. I was so excited she was there – I can’t wait to buy one of her purses!

Carol Gometz, event vendor Thirty-One Gifts
Carol Gometz, event vendor
Thirty-One Gifts

I received very positive comments on the feedback forms. The women were blessed. One attendee, Deborah Lawrence, said, “Beth, you have set a fire under me. Thank you for this.”

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees

Women told me they thought it was amazing and they felt cherished and loved as God’s Cinderella princess daughter, they felt empowered to use their gifts for God and to pursue their purpose, and they felt encouraged to cultivate a daily deeper relationship with God. This fulfilled the purpose of the event, so I consider it a success!

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees

Thanks to God, my hard working husband Ray, our daughters Heather and Leah who helped me so much, Ruth, my wonderful sponsors and vendors. Without all of you, this wouldn’t have been made possible.

The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees
The Cinderella Story: The Power of Shoes attendees

Remember to walk in the unique, God-designed shoes (purpose and calling) God has for you. You don’t need to feel envious or jealous of anyone else, or compare yourself to other women. You weren’t made to fit in, but to stand out – as the Prince’s chosen, beautiful Bride. 

As Ruth, Leah and I were packing up and leaving the hotel, I noticed a photographer was taking pictures of a groom and his bride outside. I thought it confirmed God’s message to the women at this event and felt it was prophetic and significant.

wedding at The DoubleTree Hotel
wedding at The DoubleTree Hotel

“Good shoes take you good places.” ~ Seo Min Hum

my shoes
my shoes I wore to The Cinderella Story
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