Guest Blogger Week: Jo Kent, What's On My Heart TodayMonday, October 10, 2016
What's On My Heart Today is her creative platform where she writes devotionals to help others come to know Jesus as well as inspire, uplift, encourage, and challenge us to grow closer to Jesus. Her heart's desire has been to help empower women be all we are meant to be. She is a proud wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother! I sincerely thank her for allowing me to ask her questions and pick her brain, enjoy the interview!
Q: How did you come up with the name for the blog?
In full disclosure here. I am a Christian blogger, so everything I do, I put prayer behind it. I was in between ministries and I had just experienced a stretching time in my life. I process my feelings through my writing so I began posting short devotionals on my Facebook timeline. It took on the name because what I was posting, was whatever was on my heart at the time I was writing. This is the natural process of our Spiritual growth. I've learned to thank God during the storms.
Q: How do you come up with the topics you write about?
I am a 'word' lover. It may be in my daily devotional, a sermon, a song, a conversation, or a divine knowing. Something God whispered to my heart. It only takes one word. The beauty is in watching it come to life.
Q: You have extensive background skill set in leadership, would you consider yourself a natural born leader?
By all means, yes! I speak only to women's ministry here. Anyone can technically lead a ministry, however, it takes spiritual gifting's tied to experience and origination to make it successful. Women's ministry in particular, requires hands on, being intuitive, compassionate, and a deep affection for women. It's imperative to have a passion for what you do or it will become a burden instead of a labor of love.
Q: What do you enjoy most about writing for What’s On My Heart Today?
Hands down partnering with God. It requires spending time in His presence. I also love writing and the homework that goes into putting a message together. It is such a blessing to watch as each message comes to life and takes on the meaning of the title.
Q: How do you stay inspired?
Prayer! Prayer! Prayer! And, allow me to take you on a somewhat poetic journey so your readers can get a glimpse into what truly inspires me! I am an early riser. When the world is silent and nature is just beginning to wake from its slumber, I step outdoors and I am greeted with gentle ocean breezes that seem to whisper "Peace be still". I feel blessed! I see a vision of loveliness in all our plants and flowers that God so masterfully painted with His paintbrush...I feel blessed! I see butterflies and hummingbirds and can hear sweet little larks, singing melodies of ancient love songs... I feel blessed! I think of all the beauty that I have been so richly blessed with... and I know without a doubt, who blessed me! I sense a feeling of harmony deep within my spirit, and I invite Him into my presence. With pen in hand, we write together. Yes, most all my inspiration comes from my deep love for my Lord, after all...I am a Christian blogger. And, there is no greater inspiration than God's creation.
Q: Since What’s On My Heart Today is a fairly new blog, how do you get the word out to build readership?
I use whatever avenue available to me. I targeted friends that made up my initial following. Many who re-share my posts on their social media. I also re-post to my Pinterest and Facebook. It is important that you not get caught up in numbers. You will probably never know the reach your blog has. Remember these blogs stay out there in the universe forever. I always say a prayer before I hit send and trust it to go out on angel wings.
Q: Do you set certain goals for yourself like when you write and how often you publish?
I am a very self-driven person. I set goals and I keep them to the best of my ability. To build a reader base, it's imperative to be consistent. I set my goal for 5 posts a week, M-F. As for writing, it takes some form of inspiration to write. Some days I may sit at my computer and just stare at the screen. Other days, I can't get the words typed fast enough. I love what I do, so it's a joy to be on this journey.
Q: I know my readers would be curious about what a typical day would look for you. Can you share a bit with us?
Well, I can almost hear a collective groan! I get up around 4:00 am. As I stated above, I love nature before the noise of the world drowns out the earth waking up. I spend at least 2 hours on my blog before the demands of my day creep in. I spend around 30 minute on social media. After all, how else would I know what my kiddies are up to, right? LOL! I am also blessed to have a husband that shares my love for the Lord and His Word and we share one hour together every morning in a topical Bible study. The rest of my day is my playground.
Q: What would you say has been the most challenging thing you’ve experienced about ministering to women?
I m a perfectionist by nature, when you are working with other women you will be called to entrust their work ethics. Some people call this being a "Control Freak" but that's not true. As a leader, we ultimately have the responsibility for what comes out of our ministry. For example, if we agree to let another sister speak, teach, or lead and they don't have good people skills, or maybe, they don't come prepared, it becomes problem solving to correct.
Q: What do you want to see happen in a year or two from now with your blog?
Christian ministries can be for a season or a lifetime. I am a servant of my Lord. He often weaves us in and out of ministries. I don't look at this ministry as a career so my desire is to be in the right place and time for "Such a time as this" Esther 4:14.
Q: How did you come up with the format for each post? Because I like how it’s not too long and gets straight to point without sounding too “preachy”.
I have discovered after many years of writing that it's human nature to have a short attention span. Most people in our busy life today don't have a lot of free time. We are a visual people. Short and sweet gets the attention.
Q: Do you do a lot of reading and research for your writings?
Like I mentioned, I am mostly inspired by all God's creation. While I enjoy reading, I have precious little time to do so. Besides, my motivation comes entirely from within. I love people and I love hearing their stories. There isn't much that doesn't interest me. Everyone has a story to tell. I also love words. They just seem to pop out at me through conversations with other people. Writing has to come from our own personal experiences and all the factions that go along with them. I've lived a long time on this earth so I have many experiences to draw from. I am in the Word of God (Bible) daily. I prefer to write and teach topically only meaning that I use the Bible (preferably NKJV) primarily for my inspiration and information. Because we live in a world of technology, I use the internet to gather information pertaining to my topic, i.e., biography, dates, historical events, and lineage.
Q: To anyone who has a desire to write full-time as a Blogger, what advice would you give them?
Blogging is a great tool with an international audience. However, It is a labor of love that requires maintenance. There are so many avenues available today to writers. Books are primarily written to tell a one-time story. Blogging speaks to many things from personal journeys to sharing trades, (i.e., cooking, crafting, etc.) Others like me, share the Gospel. My personal calling is to be a voice for Jesus. My goal is to inspire, empower, and equip women with the tools to be all that God created them to be. In order to build a audience we have to be consistent in posting. It doesn't take being a rocket scientist to blog, but it does take having a passion about something, a dedication, and a heart for other people. I'm a big propionate of journaling. Most anyone who enjoys journaling is passionate about something and enjoys people, would probably make a good blogger. Blogging is very rewarding. There are millions of people out there that would love to hear your stories.
Q: What type of ministry do you see going forward?
I'm approaching my 'seasoned years' so I don't have the opportunity to think too long termed. I believe that as Christians, as long as we have life, we are called to do God's work. "The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few..." Matthew 9:37a. As long as I live I will serve my Lord with open hands and an open heart! I am blessed!
A big thank you to Jo for allowing us to get to know her better! And, be sure to check out and follow her blog by clicking here! It is inspirational reading.