An INNER VIEW with Actress, Singer and Beauty Pageant Winner, Tania Joy

An INNER VIEW with Actress, Singer and Beauty Pageant Winner, Tania Joy

BIO

Tania Joy is an actress, singer, speaker, and winner of multiple beauty competitions – Miss Teen Illinois 1993, Miss Teen America 1994, and Miss Illinois 1996. She started Beauty for Ashes and is the host of her show, The Tania Joy Show, which focuses on combating the many anti-Biblical ideals and cultural norms of today. She has dealt personally with anti-Christian attacks on her career and life and as a mom, has had her family and Christian beliefs and values targeted for sharing her viewpoints and faith. She has worked in corporate American finance, Bio-Pharma, Retail, and HR but currently travels the country speaking about what it means to be a modern-day Esther. She is passionate about preserving Christian values, political freedom, and the importance of preserving the traditional family unit.

INNER VIEW

Kathleen Cooke: As a TV host and speaker, you are passionate about preserving Biblically based values, but in today’s culture, it takes courage. What has God taught you about being bold in a Babylonian world?

Tania Joy: He is good and faithful through all of life’s storms and circumstances. When He calls you, He qualifies you. You might not feel qualified when He first calls you, but never doubt that you are not placed here, at this point in history, for such a time as this. He will use the foolish things of this world to confound the things of the wise and the weak to shame the strong. Just like Esther, she had to be willing to sacrifice even her own life to follow the call that God had placed within her. She was scared, yet she prayed, fasted, and then obeyed.

I have followed Jesus since I was 3 years old, but I was not fully prepared for what would be required these days to follow the narrow road laid out before us. The cost and sacrifice to follow His Word and teaching is often a difficult choice but one that God asks of us. Yet, when we fully surrender, we step into His fullness of joy, blessing, and fulfillment like nothing we could ever imagine. We are living in biblical days, the days of Noah, the days of Esther, the days of Gideon’s army, and truly in biblical proportions. We are seeing in America, for the first time, the cost of being a Christ follower, experiencing persecution like we have never seen. But let’s not forget that He has already overcome this world. We are only passing through. This is not our forever home. We were called to occupy until He returns, so let’s love Him above all other gods and love our neighbor as ourselves. I believe this is what we must encourage each other to do in these days.

Kathleen: How have you been able to find hope when things look so bleak in our world today?

Tania: The Word instructs us in Matthew 16:24 that we are to take up our cross and follow Him; in other words, count the cost. We are called to lay down our ways, our hopes, and our thoughts and seek Him for His dreams over our lives. Sometimes, what we face on this side of heaven will not ‘feel’ as good as we would hope. Jesus told us in John 15:18 that the world hated Him first and that, as a result, if we truly follow Him, the world will hate us in return. How many Christ-followers truly understand what it means to have the world ‘hate’ you, the culture, the common world around you, the community, and the social networks – ‘hate’ you? If we choose to follow Him against all odds, regardless of how unpopular it might make us, we will suffer in this world.

I have watched my world collapse around me multiple times; the suffering is deep, long, and hard. But the Word tells me 365 times not to fear. We will suffer. The world does not like what we stand for. The way to get through the suffering is to surrender all our callings, our fleshly desires, our hopes and dreams, and everything that we think about, knowing that He will sustain us. We are to be in this world but not of this world. It is often hard to understand the suffering we see in this world, but we must remember that we are living in a fallen world. When Jesus walked this earth, He reminded us, “Be of good courage because I have overcome the world” John 15:33.

Kathleen: The world is relentless. It pushes us to our limits with 24/7 non-stop demands. How have you found rest, particularly as a TV host and with the travel you do?

Tania: The Lord has been speaking to me a lot about rest. He told me about a year ago it would be crucial to know when and how to rest in Him. We are in a spiritual battle. There are many scriptures about the battle that we are in; my favorite is Ephesians 6:12: we “are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.” The only way we can battle in this way is to know how to rest in Him at the same time. The Bible talks about rest; in fact, it mentions rest 57 times. Psalms 37:7 talks about finding rest in the Lord and to wait patiently for Him. During our busy daily lives, where we are surrounded by the push of the culture, social media, and 24/7 work, we have forgotten the importance of what rest can and will do to us.

Resting is vital for our health, increases our concentration and memory, healthier immune system, reduces stress, improves our mood, and gives us a better metabolism. What does that look like? Turn off the phone and let your thoughts be on Jesus! Put your mind on Him. (Col. 3:2) Then stay there. We have become a culture that thinks our ‘rest in the Lord’ is like a Tesla charging station: plug in for 30 min and then get back on the road of life. He wants our everything. This is how we renew our minds daily. He alone will refuel us. If we do not take the time to rest, we will have nothing to give out. “For out of the abundance of being in His presence, do we have what is necessary to flow out onto others. (John 7:38)

Kathleen: You have a big following and have become an influencer. What has God taught you about being the right kind of influencer?

Tania: The definition of influence has changed for me over the years. When I was young and dreamt of being an actress/singer, I thought of fame and fortune, of lights and cameras. That definition has drastically changed in me over the years, and I am thankful that the Lord was kind to keep me on the journey of transformation in preparation for today. Influence is a very powerful thing, it can sway culture, it can transform nations, it can change hearts and minds.

Being a woman of influence means that the words I say, the places I go, the things I support, the views I have, and the beliefs that I stand for – all have the potential to impact someone else. Both good and bad. My voice can bless or curse. Therefore, it is of high value that I surrender my life daily to Jesus, that I seek His face on a regular basis and listen for His words so that when I speak, I am not just sharing my thoughts, but I am sharing what I hear Him saying to His Bride in these days. Being a woman of influence is the power to touch others with the love, truth, and power of Jesus Himself in a broken and dying world. We have a great responsibility when we have an influence of any kind.  I believe He has placed many of us on this earth, at this point in history, for a specific reason. Like Queen Esther, she was prepared for the time at which she lived and was in the kingdom. Had it been years earlier or later, her impact would have been different. Every woman on this earth right now needs to be prepared and has been called for such a time as this to set the nations free and save God’s children from being stolen by the enemy.

The Physical Touch of God and Why Your Touch Matters

The Physical Touch of God and Why Your Touch Matters

“I just wanted someone to hug me.” This was the comment I had from one of our Influence Women members on a Zoom webinar as the pandemic was coming to an end. We had been discussing why relationships matter and why Influence Women is essential. She was single and, during the pandemic, had been left for weeks without much outside conversation or actual physical touch – a hug. “It was one of the most difficult times I have ever had to experience in her life,” she said.

Touch is essential to humans.

Many studies have been done on the effects of babies left and never touched or picked up, of people who were left untouched in nursing or care homes, or even for long periods on deserted islands. The result is often irreversible trauma emotionally, physically, and sadly even spiritually. God created us to be in relationships. Jesus touched the people He healed. Thomas required Jesus to show him his hands and feet after He had been resurrected. Jesus said to him, “… “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.” John 20:27 (NIV). The reason God sent Jesus to our broken, sinful world was so that we could touch, see, and hear God physically through the flesh of Jesus. In today’s 24/7 access to information and emerging AI technology, physical touch is becoming more important than ever to knowing and experiencing real truth and love.

I’ve been blessed to be married for many years (more than I was ever single) to a loving husband who likes to touch things. I do too. He sometimes laughs at me when I shop because I touch things. But I have had to stop him from time to time when he talks to someone he doesn’t know because he, with his caring manner, will lightly touch their elbow or back when he stops to talk to them. People today don’t like to be touched because they aren’t touched anymore. It can unfortunately feel offensive instead of caring. My children and grandchildren don’t live near me, and I miss their physical touch, and not being able to squeeze them regularly makes my heart ache. “Facetime” is great, but it’s just not the same as hugging their necks.

We can still feel God’s touch on us today.

God wants us to touch Him and longs for our engagement with knowing Him intimately. He doesn’t require anything of us but to love Him and spend time with Him. He is love – perfect love. We feel His touch through our personal encounters. It’s a mystery to me still, but I feel God in my prayers and meditations when I read the Bible. I feel Him through the arms and hugs of other believers. Sometimes it is just the squeeze of a hand in a prayer circle or a pat on the shoulder, or a high five. Sometimes I feel God in a crisp Autumn breeze or in the sound of ocean waves pounding. Sometimes it is the aroma of flowers or pine trees or the smell of a baby’s cheek. I sense God’s joy in the sound of children giggling, a dog’s wet nose-nudges, or in the expressions of praise, song, music, and worship as believers gather together.

God touches you when you touch each other.

My heart leaps for joy at Influence Women’s gatherings when you come together at events, and I see you touch others’ lives. When you hug each other, the room explodes in a deafening noise of love. It’s why the Influence Women community of women touching each other needs to grow more. We need to gather others so that we can touch the world with our stories, projects, music and art, and ultimately share God’s loving touch with a depressed and lonely world. Our culture needs to touch each other through our artistic and creative work. When we collaborate and intimately connect, the darkness in our world is changed by the Light of the World.

I hope you will make an effort to schedule the Influence Women event dates in your calendars when they are announced and show up to touch others. Join the relationship-building INspire gatherings and bring a friend to the larger professional events. Register for the online Bible study or a mentorship series. Come and volunteer. Your touch matters to someone, even if it’s just a smile on a screen, a caring prayer you give, or an encouraging word about something you’ve learned. We grow stronger and more powerful when we touch each other. You have touched me, and I am forever grateful. Keep touching others – they need you. We need you.

Register for the in-person Hollywood Chapter Professional Brunch, and bring a friend – We want to see you there and hug your neck!