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Through "The Basics with Beth," Beth Jones is teaching the basics of God's Word to help you live a life you love and love the life you live! 

Devo

I can't wait for you to start enjoying The Basics Daily Devo!

I know an exciting little secret...when you get the basics of God’s Word, your faith will be strengthened and you'll be equipped to unlock your God-given potential and live a life you feel good about: a life connected to God, a life where you belong and matter to those around you, a life that is full of joy and laughter and a successful life that allows you to makes a generous dent in eternity. This is a life worth living!

Every morning you'll receive a faith-filled shot in the arm to equip you with the basics you need to live the life you'll love!

Here's what you can expect each week:

Monday through Friday: Fresh, fun and empowering Bible basics to build your faith and impact your life in practical ways. Whether it's a short Bible-based devotional, a funny image to brighten your day or to post on your social meda, a link to our podcast or a nugget of truth -- you will be strengthened, inspired and challenged in the basics of your faith.

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Filtering by Category: Jesus

CLEAN SLATE

Jennifer Cole

"I don't mean to say that I have already achieved these things or that I have already reached perfection! But I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ Jesus saved me for and wants me to be. No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be, but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us up to heaven." Philippians 3:12-14, NLT

OK, a new year is just around the corner and it's time to let go of everything in 2018...to lay aside any weights that would slow you down in this fresh new year and instead choose to run forward with all the blessings and favor the Lord has in store for you!

It’s time for you to have a breakout year!

Friends, let’s begin our breakout year with a clean slate! Let’s live in the reality of God’s love and grace...let’s:

Let go of --
Failures
Habits
Disappointments
Sadness
Grief
Mistakes
Anger
Fear
Weakness
Intimidation

Grab on to --
Wisdom
Favor
Victory
Success
Joy
Peace
Love
Fruit
Increase
Strength
Confidence

Ta-da! It’s that simple to start fresh! You now have a clean slate for 2019…your breakout year is about to be written. Isn’t that exciting and encouraging?

God bless you as you press on to the high calling of God in 2019!

Say This: "Father, I know I haven't arrived, but I choose to forget -- lay aside -- the things that are behind me and I press on to the high calling of God in Christ and all the things that are ahead. I declare that 2019 will be a year marked by Your goodness, anointing, favor, protection, provision, wisdom and a revelation of Your love and Father-heart toward me…so that I can be and do all that You have called me to be and do. In Jesus' Name. Amen."

GOD. WITH. US.

Jennifer Cole

“Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.’” Matthew 1:23, NLT

On this Christmas Eve, let’s remember one simple truth. When Jesus was born as a baby in that manger -- for the first time, God was with us! Literally.

When my sisters and I were young girls and Christmas was approaching, we would lay on our beds and talk about how cool and amazing it was that God became a human being and walked on the planet He made. Just the idea that God Almighty would choose to become a baby who grew up and walked on the planet that He created would just boggle our minds! It’s a thought beyond human understanding.

Have you thought about it lately? God was here -- on Planet Earth! Jesus was God in the flesh. While He was fully the Creator of the universe, He humbled Himself and became a man so that He could save us! God walked among us. He was here with us.

>>The sad thing is that many people in that day completely missed His visit!

Let’s not make that same mistake.

>>Let’s not miss His visitation in our own lives today, this holiday season and as we head into 2019.

Today, Jesus is alive and very much with us, now! Jesus is our Immanuel. Let’s keep this in our hearts and minds in all the hustle and bustle of Christmas, last-minute shopping and Christmas Eve celebrations with family.

Take some time today to acknowledge, thank and talk to Jesus -- your Immanuel -- God with you! He loves you, He’s for you, and He’s WITH you!

Merry Christmas!

Say This: "Father, thank You for stepping out of heaven to visit us. Thank You that out of Your great love for us, you chose to put on a human body and visit the planet You created, on the greatest rescue mission of all time. I praise You for being Immanuel -- You are the God who is still with us and with ME every single day. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”

HOPE, JOY & MOCHAS

Jennifer Cole

As someone who lives in Michigan, I am acutely aware that later this week it “officially” becomes winter. I love my state and my city, but there are certain things about this particular season that are not my favorite y’all...like snow, ice, cold temps...okay, that’s pretty much the next 3 months here! Now, I do like to ski and do other fun winter activities to help me enjoy some aspects of this season. But truth be told, what really gets me through this season is what’s on the other side.

You see, spring and summer in Michigan are absolutely, hands-down incredible! And, everyone becomes super outdoorsy...hiking, biking, boating, you name it...and it’s probably because we are extra grateful that it’s so nice out!

Not only is winter season upon us, but also the holiday season. For some people, the holidays come with the same sort of dread or “survival mode” mentality that winter can bring for many of us. Maybe you’ve lost a loved one and the holidays have that twinge of pain now. Maybe you thought you’d be married by now, with 3 kids and a dog, and each holiday you feel sad as that vision of a family gathered around a dining room table is still just a dream. Or, any other host of reasons that people can feel “blue” in the holiday season.

But, I want to encourage you today with the two things that help me get through winter because they can also help you successfully navigate this holiday season -- first, find things you enjoy and do them! And secondly, stir up the hope of the joy that’s on the other side of this season.

So, first -- what are some things you enjoy at the holidays? Do you love Christmas music? Play it shamelessly, anytime, anywhere -- and sing along! Do you love the community spirit that seems to shine so vibrantly around the holidays? Help out at a soup kitchen, provide a holiday dinner to a family in need, or ring a bell for the Salvation Army. There are so many ways to get involved and it’s so uplifting to help others.

And, it doesn’t always have to be big things...what are the little things you enjoy around the holidays? If it’s the peppermint mocha that pops up this time of year, indulge in one! Wrap up with a mocha, a fuzzy blanket and a new book to read. When you focus on the pieces you DO enjoy -- whether they’re big or small -- it will help you navigate this season successfully to the other side.

And secondly, let’s remember how absolutely vital HOPE is! Remind yourself of the great Bible promises that God gives us about hope, such as: “...Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning” (Psalm 30:5 NLT). I also like how the Message translation shares that same verse: “...The nights of crying your eyes out give way to days of laughter.”

You see, in life we will all go through seasons...both the natural ones we endure due to where we live, but also the seasons of life. The Lord knows we’ll go through seasons. We read in His Word: “To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven:... A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance” (Ecclesiastes 3:1,4 NKJV).

>>The key to navigating through a season that’s difficult is to remember that it’s just that...a season. Temporary. Not forever. And, with the Lord we know the best is yet to come!

You can do this...with the Lord’s help you can find things you enjoy about any season you’re in, and He’ll also help you hold tightly to the hope of the joy He has in store for you after you’ve endured. Friends, I’m praying for all of you who may be struggling in this season. Remember that God is on your side and He has joy prepared for you -- keep your heart and life centered on Him, and then truly the best is yet to come!

Say This: “Father, thank You for always being with me and for me, no matter what season I’m in. Thank You that when I’m in a difficult season, You help me find enjoyable things that can help me endure that season. And, You fill me with incredible hope for the bright future and blessings ahead, which helps me stay strong through this tough season. Thank You that You’re always by my side and for Your great love for me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”

ONE OF MY FAVES

Jennifer Cole

One of the most basic yet life-changing verses in the Bible has to be John 10:10. For sure, the whole Bible has the power to transform our lives, but today I want to dig deeper into this one particular verse. Sometimes we can learn the richness of a specific verse when we marinate our hearts in it...let’s do that today by looking at John 10:10 in several translations.

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (NKJV).

“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows)” (AMPC).

“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life” (NLT).

“A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of” (MSG).

“A thief has only one thing in mind—he wants to steal, slaughter, and destroy. But I have come to give you
everything in abundance, more than you expect—life in its fullness until you overflow!” (TPT).

Wow! I just love this verse -- in fact, I like to call this verse the Bible’s “litmus test.” It’s a verse we can use to sift things that happen in our life, to determine who’s behind it. If the situation or issue is in any way stealing, killing or destroying things in your life...that may be your health, relationships, prosperity, any number of things...it’s authored by our enemy in life (the devil).

Now, to be clear, it may not always be that the devil is personally attacking you -- we live in a fallen world, so some things that steal or destroy the good in your life are due to the overall fall led by the enemy long ago. But ultimately, anything that steals, kills and destroys in your life is rooted in the enemy’s strategies against you.

>>On the other hand, if something in your life is full of abundance, joy, peace, health, wisdom, satisfaction, fulfillment, contentment and so on, that’s from the Lord!

One other caveat, Jesus told us we would experience tribulations (literally, pressure and stress!) and persecutions in this life because of our faith. He also promised us we could have His joy right in the midst of these things. Even with tribulations and persecutions -- and dealing with the enemy’s plans to steal, kill and destroy -- Jesus’ John 10:10 promise still stands!

Just look at all the ways the translations of John 10:10 phrase this...real life, abundance, enjoying life, better than we dreamed of...sign me up for that!! Jesus paid the ultimate price on the Cross for us...so that we can have real, abundant and eternal life.

Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God, so I pray that as you read John 10:10 multiple times above, your faith was increased! You now have John 10:10 as a powerful tool in your life...it is the ultimate litmus test to be sure you know how to rightly divide situations to know who’s behind it. God has an incredible life in store for you...walk each day with Him and He’ll lead the way!

Say This: “Father, thank You for Your Word -- it’s my guidebook for life. Thank You for John 10:10, which shows me the kind of life that Jesus paid the price for me to have. Help me to follow Your lead every day because I know the life You have in store for me is one of abundance, peace, joy, prosperity, wisdom and so much more! In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”

BETTER THAN BUTTER

Jennifer Cole

We’ve all seen how much things change in life...all the time. For one example, think about how much change in philosophy we’ve seen in the area of nutrition! At one point, butter was bad for us so we all switched to margarine. Now, margarine is bad for us, so we’ve switched back to real butter (or even all natural grass-fed butter!!). There are diet programs saying that eating all plant-based is best for us, while other programs push all meats and little else.

Amazing, isn’t it?

While that’s a simple example, it highlights a very important truth...almost everything “man-made” is subject to change! It’s one thing to build your dinner plans around an ever-shifting food theology...but how much more important is your life, your future and your eternal destination?

>> When you’re deciding what to build your life and your future on -- be sure you’re building on an unchanging foundation!

The basic truth is that there’s only one thing that has withstood the test of time...and will for all ages...and that’s the Word of God. Many verses confirm the longevity of the Bible, like we see in Isaiah 40:8: “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever” (AMPC).

God’s Word stands the test of time...all the time! It’s FULL of promises He has given to us, but like all gifts, they must be unwrapped to truly bless us. I encourage you to spend time each day reading and learning God’s Word. Read your Bible. Pick up a daily devotional book. Play the Bible audio from the YouVersion app on your phone while getting ready for your day. Listen to faith-filled podcasts and sermons. Make a worship playlist on Spotify. There are so many ways to get more of the Bible in your life -- try several! After all, the Word of God is the only unchanging foundation for our lives -- but that doesn’t help us if we don’t know what it says! Make this time in your life the time you decide to build and strengthen that sure foundation!

Here’s another basic truth that I love -- the Bible is living and active! As we read or hear the Word, and choose to receive and apply it, it actively helps us. Check out this encouraging passage in 2 Timothy 3:16-17: “There’s nothing like the written Word of God for showing you the way to salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—showing us truth, exposing our rebellion, correcting our mistakes, training us to live God’s way. Through the Word we are put together and shaped up for the tasks God has for us” (MSG).

The living power of the Word helps our lives when we choose to make it our plumbline...our foundation...what we build our life on. When we choose to submit our lives to the Bible, we will see its great work in our lives! I like how 1 Thessalonians 2:13 shows us this, in the Amplified translation: “...the word of God, which is effectually at work in you who believe [exercising its inherent, supernatural power in those of faith].”

Today, I encourage you to draw the line in the sand, that from this day forward you choose to submit your life to the living Word of God -- and in doing so, you’ll be building your life on the eternal, immovable, unshaken, powerful, life-giving, inspiring, correcting, guiding and encouraging Word! And that’s waaaay better than butter.

Say This: “Father, thank You for Your Word. Thank You that Your Word is eternal, unchanging, living and active. Today, I choose to submit my life to the Word and I ask You to help me learn more of the Word each day so it can become my strong, firm foundation for life. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”