Archive for August, 2010

Ghosts in Our Attic

Do you believe in Ghosts?

Last night I woke up to use the bathroom and I heard a strange noise coming from the kitchen. It wasn’t a normal house noise, it was calculated, happening every five seconds or so, like something or someone was tapping on the kitchen counter. Of course it could’ve been a mouse, but when the house is dark, and you’re half asleep your mind has a funny way of playing tricks on you. I quickly crawled back in bed, woke up my husband and told him what I heard. “It’s just my phone,” he said in a thick groggy voice. He probably wouldn’t even remember the conversation if I asked him about it now. I crawled deeper into his arms and tried to fall back asleep.

I don’t believe in ghosts. But I believe in evil spirits. Now, I’m not trying to scare anyone. Good and evil spirits are very real. This isn’t the first time I’ve felt a strange vibe in our house at night. Several times, my husband himself has woken up and prayed over us because of the feeling in the room. I don’t want to scare anyone, but I do want to bring awareness.

I remember the first time I learned how to take care of an evil spirit. I was probably 8, and we were heavily involved in a production at our church called “The Bride.” The Bride was a play about Jesus, God and the church, represented by a little girl. There were angles and demons and actors and dancers and lots of good looking make up to make everyone look real.

Me and my mom were walking down the hall one night and we ran into one of the demons actors. She was scary and I cowered behind my mom. The actor knelt down and told me a few words I haven’t forgotten to this day.

“You don’t have to be scared. All you have to do is say the name of Jesus and tell me to get lost and I have to obey.”

She went on to explain the power behind his name and how all demons, real and fake, were not anywhere near as powerful as Jesus.

I like remembering that. I like knowing that even if there are ghosts in our attic I have the power of getting rid of them with just one word. One Name.

I know I’m not the only person who’s ever experienced this. Share your thoughts on your own experiences and let us gain the boldness and power to protect ourselves, and our families from the attacks of the enemy.

You’re Not the Only Person in the World

Sometimes I can forget that I’m not the only person in the world. Yes, of course I know I’m not the only person, but sometimes I can get caught up in thinking I’m the only person in my world. The only person who matters, who has problems, aches, pains and worries.

Today I want to be reminded that I am not the only person in the world.

I just heard some horrible news. A family in my community just lost their 15 year-old son. He was killed in a car accident last night with his older brother who is still in surgery as I type this. My heart goes out to this family and all the people this young man impacted while he was on the earth.

I was complaining about a headache this morning, but learning this news brings things into perspective. I’m not the only person in the world. There are other people hurting and wounded who need support and someone to talk to. When we take the focus off ourselves and start paying attention to others around us our problems might not seem so big.

Today I don’t want to think about myself. I want to reach out to those who need encouragement and hope.

I encourage you to do the same.

I’m not the only person in the world.

Neither are you.

The Shape Project’s Fall Boot Camp

Earlier this week I mentioned something about Shape Project’s Fall Boot Camp starting September 7th. I wanted to highlight it again to encourage all of you who ever thought about signing yourself up under a trainer.

For me, it was the best decision I could’ve made. Not only does working out under a trainer push you past your limit it also helps you stay consistent in your work outs because you know she’ll be waiting for you every morning.

Now there’s even more of a reason to join the Shape Project Community. Starting September 7th Shape Project will begin it’s fall boot camp. Not only are you working out with a trainer, you are working out with ten other men or women each pushing each other to do better, work harder and see amazing results. Check out how I shaped up this summer!

Thank you Randy Coleman for the awesome pics!

Read the add below and sign up today!

Girls and guys, if you are tired of your exercise routine, or looking for a
fun and engaging way to get fit and lose weight then join Shape Project’s
Fall Boot Camp, starting September 7th, on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday
evenings at 6pm
with Shape Projects own Melissa Cox, M.S. Any level of
fitness is welcome. Join the group for only $200 for 12 sessions (4 weeks)
and get in the best shape of your life.

Join others at Lake Hefner in Oklahoma City while we mix strength training and cardio to get fit, lose
weight and stay healthy. Now is the time to register! E-mail
shapeproject@cox.net or call 496-5891 for more information or to register for the class.
September 3rd is the last day to register for this class. (An early bird registration of 10% off applies if you sign up by September 1st Also, take an additional 10% off the price if you refer two other people to join the class!) Invest in your
health and join the Shape Project community.

Free Online Resources for Student Ministry #stumin #youthmin

In SWITCH, our student ministry at LifeChurch.tv we are currently going through a series called “Greater Than.”

The idea behind the series is to help students understand it is greater to be a servant than to be served. We are building our culture around the truth that we are called to serve.

Below you can watch the message from last night as well as follow the link to free resources for youth pastors, youth leaders or parents. Enjoy!

Online Resource Page

Headaches and Blog Posts Don’t Mix

I’ve got a huge headache this morning. I was up all night last night because of a stupid cricket that would not shut up! I wanted to kill something.

So I’ve decided that headaches and blog posts don’t mix, but here are some random pictures I took yesterday. Enjoy!

This is my water bottle. I don’t go anywhere without it. Six of these babies equals one gallon of water. Drink water. It’s good for you.

This is Vince. I work right next to him. He is an awesome youth pastor and he has a blog too. Click right here and you will see.

This is Batman and Robin. Josh Wren is probably one of the most original people I know. He is always wearing crazy looking T-shirts.

Big SWITCH starts two weeks from today. It is our bring in event for our student ministry. I’m hoping for 500+ students to come, have fun and hear about Jesus. Come join us and help out with this event.

That is all I have the energy for… debating whether I should go to a school and visit some kids or if that would just make my headache worse…. SWITCH tonight. Gotta get over it sometime…

A Swimming Pool in our Living Room!

On August 10th, (Cody’s 26th birthday) we came home to a swimming pool in our living room!

A leak underneath the bathtub in our master bathroom had been gushing all day!

After trying to mop up the water we realized we were going to have to rip out the carpet!

There was still standing water on the concrete slab even after we removed the soaking carpet and pad!

Insurance came in and assessed the damage. They totaled almost all our floors. The living room carpet, the bedroom carpet, the kitchen wood and the bathroom tile. We spent the next several days demolishing all the damaged areas and got a lot done thanks to great friends!

Funny how something like this could be a totally paralyzing situation if we allowed it. However, Cody and I believe that our circumstances aren’t the things that should control us.

More often than not, it’s things like this that turn into being more of a blessing than a curse. It’s all in how you look at it.

Lose 10 Pounds in 1 Month!

Join Shape Project’s Fall Boot Camp!

I started working out with Shape Project in June this year. I didn’t really know what to expect but after three sessions I started to notice a difference in the way I looked and felt. Everything got tighter! My arms shaped up, my booty got firmer, my abs started forming, and I dropped 7 pounds.

Melissa is an incredible trainer. She has the amazing ability to push you past your breaking point and show you there’s more in you than you thought. She is tough, but encouraging at the same time. She has a passion to help men and women get in shape and to help them live a better life.

That’s why I’m happy to announce that Shape Project will be hosting it’s Fall Boot Camp Starting September 7th on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings from 6pm to 7pm at Hafer Park in Edmond. These sessions are perfect for anyone wanting to get in better shape or lose weight.

The cost for 12 sessions (4 weeks, with three sessions per week) is $200 including the Shape Project’s T-shirt. Take it from me, it is a small investment into something that will change they way you think about exercise, your body and getting healthy.

Try it. Give it one month and see if you don’t notice a difference as well. The deadline for registration is September 3rd.

For more information e-mail shapeproject@cox.net and join the Shape Project community!

I’m Not Stubborn-End of Discussion

Sometimes, my husband tells me I’m stubborn. I, of course, argue my case, not backing down for anything…. which just goes to show that of course he’s right. I am stubborn. But admitting it would be a kind of surrender. One I’m not quite ready to give.Rebel

Stubbornness, for a woman can either be her friend or her enemy. Our stubbornness is that rebellious streak hardwired into each of us as a daughter of Eve. Sometimes it gives us the ability to face and conquer the issues of life as they come. But it is also that same rebellion that can get us into trouble if we don’t know how to use it to our advantage.

How do we use rebellion to our advantage? How can we put the power of stubbornness to work in our lives to bring about a positive outcome? It’s all in what we choose to rebel against.

  • Instead of rebelling against obedience to God, rebel against sin.
  • Instead of rebelling against your husband, rebel against the desire to always be right
  • Instead of resisting change, rebel against mediocrity
  • Instead of allowing life to just happen, rebel against laziness

Rebel against that which is against you. Harness the power of your stubbornness and use to bring about positive outcomes in your life.

What do you need to rebel against?

The 24 Hour Turn-Around–How to get More Leaders for Your Youth Ministry

As a youth pastor the biggest thing I learned early on in ministry is that I can’t do this alone. It is so vital as a ministry leader to recruit, develop and retain high quality talent to come alongside you and help minister to the students God has intrusted to you.

However, we all know how difficult it is to recruit high quality volunteers.

In our youth ministry, called SWITCH, we currently have a goal to recruit, develop and retain 100 adult volunteer leaders. There are several different things we are doing to try and make this happen, but one of the biggest tools I’ve found that has worked is what I call the 24 hour turn around.

When someone shows interest in your ministy is is VITAL that you follow-up with them within a 24 hour period. Strike while the iron is hot. Capture the momentum of thier decision as quickly as you can. Call, e-mail, write a letter, send smoke signals… do whatever you can to communicate with them. 

You’ll be suprised how quickly your volunteer team will grow when you adopt this method. Ask me how I know.

Everybody Wants to go to Heaven, But Nobody Wants to Die

Everybody wants to go to heave, but nobody wants to die.

Except my grandma. No, really. That wasn’t a joke. My grandma wants to die.

We had a family gathering the other day and my mom had the unfortunate task of telling my grandma, who we call Nanny, that one of her close friends passed away. My Nanny cried at this news. About five years ago she lost her husband to cancer. She’s since been remarried, but ever since she suffered a stroke about two years ago, she’s wanted to go on and be with the Lord. The news of her friend’s passing brought a strange emotion. Jealousy.

How strange to be jealous of someone who died. My family and I wonder why doesn’t God just give her what she wants and let her go and be with those she’s lost, but clearly He is not done with her yet.

Which got me thinking. She still has purpose. And if you’re alive right now, so do you and so do I.

Too often people can wander through life without a purpose, but it’s not because they don’t have one, it’s because they haven’t discovered what that purpose is.

For my grandma, her purpose is to be a prayer warrior for her family. With 11 great grandchildren, (almost 12), and 12 grand children, plus her own two daughters and their husbands, she has more than enough reason to continue the battle through prayer. A small reminder of this the other night brought a new found confidence in what God has called her to do.

So what about you? Do you know your purpose? Are you living it out the best way you know how or are the weeks and months and years passing by without it being fulfilled?

If you’re alive, there’s a purpose for your life. –Warren

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