Meeting you where you are on your own Life journey, inspiring your faith, Healing hurts, igniting your calling, and bringing you joy as you use your god-given gifts, that is our mission and our passion.
|Elizabeth Stone, B.S., MDiv.|
Co-author of Valley of the Shadow, Elizabeth is a much sought-after speaker and has been featured at churches, women’s events, retreats, and workshops for seminaries, classes, emergency responders and church leaders. She believes that people in the Bible are no different from us; they had the same questions, the same troubles, the same joys, and the same spiritual needs, and her gift is to connect us with their stories. Starting out as a teacher, she added to her college degree a Master of Divinity so that her ministry would be grounded in faithful Bible teaching. Her ministry experience spans more than twenty years, and includes pastoral care, teaching, evangelism, hospice chaplaincy, and counseling. Elizabeth leads Christian workshops for suicide prevention and recovery, calling the church to be spiritual first responders. Her other passion is vocation, inspiring believers to discover and answer Christ’s calling. The truth of Scripture is central to all her work, and she revels in the sweet and the quirky, the challenging and the encouraging Biblical messages of the Gospel. Elizabeth shares them in ways that will comfort, encourage, and inspire you. Seasoned with humor, compassion, and wisdom, in Elizabeth you will find someone who understands that the walk of faith is a journey of ups and downs, and who brings assurance of God’s love, favor, and presence in every season of life.
She and her husband Greg are (finally!) empty-nesters, and live in Lexington, Kentucky. She has five adult children and eight grandchildren (and counting!).
|Erin Jones, BBA|
Erin Jones was born in Massachusetts but was quickly – at two weeks old – returned to the mountains of West Virginia. Her recovery from her suicide attempt is nothing short of miraculous, and as co-author of Valley of the Shadow, she shares her story of depression and recovery with heartfelt candor and authenticity. Completing high school, where she participated in music and was on the tennis team, she graduated on time in 2008. Highly gifted in mathematics, she matriculated at Harding University in Arkansas, majoring in business. She spent a year in West Virginia at Fairmont State University where she competed in ballroom dance. Returning to Harding, she graduated with a BBA (Bachelor of Business Administration) with a concentration in wedding and event planning. She has worked in the resort industry, in insurance, in communications, and she plans our events like a boss. A wonderful advocate for many causes, she takes her message of hope into schools, colleges, church camps, retreats, and youth groups. Every time she speaks she brings her own brand of joy, and people are uplifted by her testimony. Currently she works as a vice-president at AWAY, a non-profit providing help, shelter and resources to victims of domestic abuse and violence. A wonderful advocate for many causes, she takes her message of hope into schools, colleges, church camps, retreats, and youth groups.
Erin and her husband James live in West Virginia, and they are paw-rents with two pups, Leah and Rodney, a couple of cats, and a tank full of fish.
WHO ARE OUR PEEPS?
You are. Happy people, sad people, churchy people, non-churchy people, seekers and believers and those who are just plain curious. C’mon in, we’re here to take on the tough issues & questions. If we don’t know the answer, we’ll look for it with you.
HOW DID WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES START?
WV Living Stone Ministries began when suicide touched our family. Struggling through a difficult recovery, we discovered lots of other people were struggling – just like us – without spiritual answers to our troubles. WV Living Stone Ministries was started to share with you what we’ve learned and provide a platform for your recovery stories and more spiritual answers from you.
WHAT DOES WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES DO?
Workshops: 7 Things to Do to Fight Suicide is your one-hour start-up class for suicide prevention and recovery.
Book: Valley of the Shadow, tells you our recovery story from Erin’s suicide attempt. Available on this website!
Blogs, podcasts, videos for you: check them out on this website.
Gifted Sisters: a one-day retreat experience for women to take time out, to be inspired in their calling, and to connect with other women.
WHAT WAS WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES’ FIRST PROJECT?
Our first project was to tell our story, the story of Erin’s suicide attempt when she was just 17 years old. Together Elizabeth (aka Mom) and Erin (aka Daughter) wrote Valley of the Shadow, our testimony of Erin’s suicide and our family recovery. The subject of suicide has been taboo in our culture and even more so in the church. Our goal was to start the conversation inside spiritual circles about suicide and what our response as Christians should be. Valley of the Shadow is available from us (signed copies!) or from any popular book distributer.
HOW DID WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES GET ITS NAME?
From the Bible! 1 Peter 2:9,10 says, “Come to Him, that Living Stone, rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, and be yourselves built – like living stones – into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Christ Jesus.”
Not only is it a great verse for our last name, but it shows how all of us, as we come to Christ and receive His grace, get plugged into His household, connected to Him and to other believers in the family of God. By Christ’s power we become, like Him, alive, living stones. This energizing grace not only saves us but gives us purpose, calling us to all kinds of service that we, as priests of the Living Christ, offer to God as spiritual sacrifices. In other words, we are loved, we are saved, and we are sent.
As for the WV part, this ministry started in West Virginia where we all lived at the time. Putting WV in any online name virtually guarantees its availability for domains and social media. Expansion into many other states (NC, OH, AR, KY, PA, MA, etc.) was beyond our wildest expectations, but that is the kind of God we serve, a great God Who takes us beyond our meagre expectations!
HOW DID YOU PREPARE TO DO THE WORK OF WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES?
Education and experience. Suicide is a tough subject, and a dangerous one. In order to speak about this safely, and to provide sound Biblical teaching on all our subjects, we have pursued formal education and credentialled training. Elizabeth Stone has added a Master of Divinity to her education that includes reading and translating Greek and Hebrew, Bible interpretation, as well as ministry, leadership, and Clinical Pastoral Education. Erin’s college required at least one Bible class every semester, and her Bachelor of Business Administration degree included specialization in event planning; Erin plans our events like a boss. Both have taken training with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP), and Elizabeth has augmented her training with specialized religious seminars, also credentialed through AFSP. Elizabeth’s experience includes vocational pastoral ministry and hospice chaplaincy. Erin’s work has focused on helping youth and college women navigate the spiritual challenges of today, and she now serves as Assistant Executive Director of AWAY, a resource center for victims of domestic abuse and violence.
HOW DOES WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES WORK?
Right now we function as a business, tithing all of our profits (or sometimes much more) to other ministries.
HOW CAN I HELP WV LIVING STONE MINISTRIES?
Follow us online! We have two Facebook pages, one for WV Living Stone Ministries and one for the book, Valley of the Shadow. We are also on Instagram @wvlivingstone, and we have YouTube videos you can watch.
Buy the book, Valley of the Shadow, and buy it from us. We’ll even sign it for you.
Sign up for our newsletter, jam-packed with Scripture, inspiration for you, and what’s up and coming in our ministry.
Come to our events. Check out our schedule for church events or open community events, our seminars, retreats, speaking appearances and book signings, and then come see us! We love connecting with all of you!
Hire us to come to your event, or allow us to design a custom event for you.
We are LOVED.
God broadcasts truth through the Bible so that we know:
God loves us. God made everything and everyone, and people are God’s favorite and best creation. and God wants every person to live forever with Him. Including you!
We are SAVED.
God saves us. When people messed up God’s world and their own souls with sin, God rescued us. God sent His perfect and sinless Son, Jesus Christ, to sacrifice Himself on the cross, so we could receive forgiveness for all our sins. Christ’s resurrection from the dead guarantees eternal life to all who believe in Him. We are saved when we repent from our sins, believe and receive Christ as our Savior, saying it out loud! Including you!*
We are SENT
God sends us. Like all the people who followed Jesus in the Bible, our salvation includes the gift of God’s Holy Spirit, living in our hearts. The Holy Spirit transmits God’s love to us, teaches us, comforts us, & intercedes for us when we pray. The Holy Spirit also sends us, igniting in us a calling to share God’s love and salvation with others. This always results in our receiving more blessing than we ever give. God has a job for every believer. Including you!
*The Believer’s Prayer
If you have never received salvation in Christ, and you would like to, simply find yourself a quiet spot, and pray this prayer:
Lord Jesus Christ, I come to You as a sinner in need of salvation. Thank You for dying on the cross for me, and please forgive all my sins. Today I claim you as my Lord and Savior; please send Your Holy Spirit into my heart now. Thank You for saving me, and making me part of Your family, O Father God. Thank You for the gift of eternal life. I pray all this in the name of Jesus, amen.
That’s all there is to it! You are in! You are now part of the family of God! A couple things to help you on your way:
1. Tell somebody what you have done. Maybe your Mom or a trusted friend has been praying for you. Let them know you have received Christ as Lord. Tell us so we can pray for you.
2. Find a Bible you can read comfortably, and start to read a little bit each day. Start with one of the Gospels, Luke or John, because they tell us about Jesus.
3. Pray to God every day. Prayer is just talking; it doesn’t have to be fancy or formal. Just thank God for all your blessings and ask God for whatever you need. Soon, God will start revealing ways you can share your faith.
4. Find a church to attend that faithfully preaches the Bible, a Christian community you can call home, to fellowship and grow with others.