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YOUR STORY MATTERS

Everyone has a story of where they come from, how they came to be here at Community and how God has touched people’s lives through their faithful service to the Lord. Each week as we highlight someone who has been called into ministry at Community Church, we pray that their story will encourage each of us to recognize how God is working in our own lives and how He desires to bless us as He blesses others through our obedience to Him.

Jan Cox

by: Erin Keller

02/02/2020

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Jan can’t remember a time when she didn’t love the Lord. She played “church” when she was a little girl; she sang at her first funeral when she was seven, and she was credentialed by the Pentecostal Holiness Church when she was 16. She has traveled the country with a singing group, is on albums with Jimmy Swaggart and Dale Evans, has been in a street ministry and was a worship leader. She got married over the phone and has lived in Saudi Arabia. She has also had huge hurts in her life: a divorce, the death of her mother,… read more

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Jan can’t remember a time when she didn’t love the Lord. She played “church” when she was a little girl; she sang at her first funeral when she was seven, and she was credentialed by the Pentecostal Holiness Church when she was 16. She has traveled the country with a singing group, is on albums with Jimmy Swaggart and Dale Evans, has been in a street ministry and was a worship leader. She got married over the phone and has lived in Saudi Arabia. She has also had huge hurts in her life: a divorce, the death of her mother, having to put her husband in a nursing home when he became a danger to himself and others. She says, “Through it all God has proven over and over again that He is faithful and that He is the God who restores.”

Jan came to Community Church in 2014. It was a time of grieving over her husband’s illness and the decision to move him to an assisted living facility, but within a short time God had her fully involved in ministry once again. Jan now serves as the director of the Care ministry and of the Life with Friends ministry. Through these ministries God is teaching her to “see the people,” not just the tasks that need to be accomplished. “He is asking me to stop, to see the people, see their hearts. He’s showing me how to stop long enough to say, ‘Father, let me see with Your eyes.’” As God has helped Jan to “see,” she has developed a calling ministry to make sure people 65 and older have a source of connection within the church through phone calls from other members.

The Life with Friends ministry she oversees includes Travel with Friends, Music with Friends and Meals with Friends. The next trip being offered is to the Ark Encounter in Kentucky June 15-19. A visit to the Ark, the Creation Museum and other venues is included, and available spots are filling fast, so if you want to go, sign up as soon as possible. Another trip planned is the 10-day trip to Israel in November, and there are still spots available for that as well. Less exotic but just as fun are the weekly Music with Friends time of singing on Wednesday mornings at 10:30, and Lunch with Friends on the first Wednesday of each month at 11:30.


Ask Jan about her adventures and join her in “doing life in community.”

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Andy & Erin Keller - Importance of Finding Life in Community

by: Erin Keller

01/19/2020

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“It begins with openness, the willingness to come alongside someone else, to pour out, care, invest. It’s about sharing the journey, doing life together, growing, forging, becoming. It’s about selflessness, caring enough to walk through the valley, even when it’s painful, to love people as Christ has loved us. It’s rejoicing when they rejoice, hurting when they hurt, being a hand, an encourager, a friend. We were not created to wander alone. For as iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” (from IRON by The Skit Guys.)

Are you interested in starting or being involved in a small group?… read more

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“It begins with openness, the willingness to come alongside someone else, to pour out, care, invest. It’s about sharing the journey, doing life together, growing, forging, becoming. It’s about selflessness, caring enough to walk through the valley, even when it’s painful, to love people as Christ has loved us. It’s rejoicing when they rejoice, hurting when they hurt, being a hand, an encourager, a friend. We were not created to wander alone. For as iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” (from IRON by The Skit Guys.)

Are you interested in starting or being involved in a small group? Contact Susan Swart or stop in at the Connect Here booth and let us know of your interest. Or just find a few people that you want to get to know better and invite them over.Andy and Erin Keller know first-hand the importance of “doing life in community” and the power of small groups to impact their lives. Andy says, “I can honestly say that without that group I would not be married today…. For years we tried to do life without a group because I’m very introverted, and I’m not a people person. When we decided to just try a group, I realized how important a group, a community is. That group stepped in when we were going through some of the hardest times in our life. The men in the group supported me, and the women supported Erin, and they helped us have accountability. A small group is made for doing life together. It’s for someone to be an integral part of your life, to be there for you, to know who you are inside, not just to know what you think about a particular passage of scripture. When you go back to the original church, it was in people’s homes. That’s where community is.”

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Barbara Ramirez

by: Erin Keller

01/12/2020

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Barbara Ramirez was born in Louisiana, Missouri, a small farming town, but she was raised in Houston for most of her life. She was raised in church, but God became real to her when she was 12, when she and her sisters were invited to attend a revival and God pricked her heart.

She married when she was 19—she says that is way too young and she doesn’t recommend it—to a career military man so she spent most of her adult life moving from one place to another. When her husband retired, they were stationed at Tinker Air… read more

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Barbara Ramirez was born in Louisiana, Missouri, a small farming town, but she was raised in Houston for most of her life. She was raised in church, but God became real to her when she was 12, when she and her sisters were invited to attend a revival and God pricked her heart.

She married when she was 19—she says that is way too young and she doesn’t recommend it—to a career military man so she spent most of her adult life moving from one place to another. When her husband retired, they were stationed at Tinker Air Force base, and Oklahoma has been home ever since.

Barbara met Bill Williams when he moved from California and walked into her insurance office to transfer his insurance from California to Oklahoma. Sometime later Lauri’s mother went to work at the insurance office, and Barbara and she became best friends. Barbara attended First Capital Baptist and then came to Community with the merger of churches.

Barbara says that God carried her through the tough times in her life, a cancer diagnosis and treatment, and then eight months after being declared cancer free, her marriage ended. The anger and the pain were excruciating, “I would go running through the empty house screaming, ‘WHY?’ One night when I was in the depths of despair and so emotional, I said, ‘God, I can’t do it anymore. I’m giving it to you. I’m going to let you handle it. And I slept peacefully all night. I had to surrender it to God. It was a process, but I had to give over control to Him.”
These days Barbara can be found working in the front office of the church, and she always has a smile on her face. She says she’s had a lot of darkness in her life, but she tries to be light to those she comes in contact with. “There are a lot of people living in darkness. You may be that one little flicker that gives them hope.”

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Heather Cook

by: Erin Keller

01/05/2020

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Heather went through a season of rebellion as a teen, but she realized she was going down the wrong path and with the help of family and new friends, she turned back to the Lord. She married Matt when she was 20, and they started their family shortly thereafter. Now she is a Mom to six wonderful children.

Heather lived for many years with anxiety and depression to the point that she wouldn’t leave the house without Matt. She homeschooled the kids and had very little outside connection besides her immediate family. But as her kids grew older, they were… read more

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Heather went through a season of rebellion as a teen, but she realized she was going down the wrong path and with the help of family and new friends, she turned back to the Lord. She married Matt when she was 20, and they started their family shortly thereafter. Now she is a Mom to six wonderful children.

Heather lived for many years with anxiety and depression to the point that she wouldn’t leave the house without Matt. She homeschooled the kids and had very little outside connection besides her immediate family. But as her kids grew older, they were lonely, so she started searching for homeschool co-ops. She couldn’t afford the tuition for the co-op that seemed right for the family, but when she found out the co-op needed a director, she applied and was given the job. She says, “I had no idea what I was signing up for, and I knew I was in over my head, but that’s how God works with me. He stretches me to do uncomfortable things. Little by little that broke me out of my shell.”

The Cooks were invited to Community Church by friends from the co-op, and almost right away Heather started working in the kids’ ministry prepping curriculum for Sundays. When the position to lead the kids’ ministry opened up, Heather stepped into that role. “These days God is pushing me beyond my comfort zone, asking me to speak and reach out to people.” Heather and Matt recently led a marriage class, and Heather is leading a once-a-month Bible study on the book of James. “To be vulnerable with people is really hard for me. And so just to share my heart is a big deal, and what’s what He’s asking me to do.”
Heather’s advice: “Find your tribe, find your community. I did life alone for so long, and even Matt did, without friends and without people to call on. Having that circle of friends to do life with, to pray for you and be there for you makes life so much sweeter, so plug in and find your spot. There is a spot for you.”

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Susan Swart

by: Erin Keller

12/29/2019

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Susan Swart comes from a long line of faithful followers of Jesus, and she accepted Jesus as her Savior when she was seven, but it was in her 20’s that a deeper relationship developed as she learned who the Holy Spirit is and what role He plays in her life. In her mid 30’s Susan went through a divorce. It was through that difficult time that God did a lot of healing and started planting seeds in her life that have grown and matured and are now used to minister to women. “He took me through reading about shame and… read more

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Susan Swart comes from a long line of faithful followers of Jesus, and she accepted Jesus as her Savior when she was seven, but it was in her 20’s that a deeper relationship developed as she learned who the Holy Spirit is and what role He plays in her life. In her mid 30’s Susan went through a divorce. It was through that difficult time that God did a lot of healing and started planting seeds in her life that have grown and matured and are now used to minister to women. “He took me through reading about shame and grace and guilt and rejection and anger and identity and perfectionism and depression, those kinds of things.” Susan learned about the power of forgiveness. “Forgiveness, I think, is the foundational component of healing. It deals with the emotional, and it deals with the spiritual, but it also deals with the physical because as you start to forgive people, your physical health starts to change.”

One of the things Susan feels the Lord has instilled in her is that everyone has a story and that it’s important to meet people where they are in their story. “I love our mission statement, loving God and loving others, and just being graceful in the midst of that no matter where they are, just loving people where they are. It’s not about fixing. We’re responsible for being obedient, but we’re not responsible for the outcome. God is responsible for the outcome…. He loves us no matter what. I don’t have to perform for Him. He truly, truly just loves me. That can be the hardest thing for us to learn. If we just sat like a bump on a log for the rest of our life, He wouldn’t love us any more or love us any less. Just being who He designed you to be is ministry. You don’t know who you come in contact with that just being you is the key to them being able to start moving forward.”

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Andy Keller

by: Erin Keller

12/22/2019

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Andy Keller says, “Sometimes God uses a 2x4 to get our attention.” God used several 2x4’s to get Andy’s attention back in 2011.

Andy grew up in a poor, single-parent family. When he was in junior high, a friend invited him to Falls Creek, and that is where he gave his life to Jesus and was baptized. But when he got out of high school, Andy pulled away from God for a season. He met and married Erin, who brought him back to church, but he admits he was trying to do life his way, not God’s. But in 2011 he… read more

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Andy Keller says, “Sometimes God uses a 2x4 to get our attention.” God used several 2x4’s to get Andy’s attention back in 2011.

Andy grew up in a poor, single-parent family. When he was in junior high, a friend invited him to Falls Creek, and that is where he gave his life to Jesus and was baptized. But when he got out of high school, Andy pulled away from God for a season. He met and married Erin, who brought him back to church, but he admits he was trying to do life his way, not God’s. But in 2011 he was involved in a fireworks explosion which left him with a broken ankle and burns on his arm. A month later he spent a week in ICU with blood clots and a collapsed lung. A friend gently suggested that God was trying to get his attention, and that helped him to change his focus. Now God, family and friends are his priorities. It is his family and his circle of Christian friends who help keep him on the right path. “We think we can do life alone, and I was one of those who thought that. But it’s the relationships, it’s your core group of friends that you can go to for anything without judgment that’s going to get you through the tough times. My advice is to find a small group of Christlike followers and do life with them. We are not meant to do life alone.”

Andy tries to convey that message and be that safe person for the students he serves at Community Church. “I want the kids to know that if they fall, someone is going to be there for them, that I’m not going to judge them, that I’m going to be there unconditionally. My kids know that they can call me any day, any time, and I’ll be there for them.“
Are you involved in a small group? Invite someone to join you. Are you looking for a group? There are several new groups starting in January. Take a chance and get involved. You may make friendships that will last for eternity.

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Darla Kilhoffer

by: Erin Keller

12/15/2019

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Exhuberant, joyful, enthusiastic, fun: those are all words that describe Darla Kilhoffer. Darla may be young in years, but she is mature in her faith in Jesus and in her desire to chase after Him with all her heart.
Darla grew up in a Christian home, the middle child of five. She says that her Dad’s family was all musical, and he would sing around the house. The kids all picked up that habit, and one friend said, “It’s like walking into a Disney movie when I come over. You all just burst into song!”
Life was not all sunshine… read more

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Exhuberant, joyful, enthusiastic, fun: those are all words that describe Darla Kilhoffer. Darla may be young in years, but she is mature in her faith in Jesus and in her desire to chase after Him with all her heart.
Darla grew up in a Christian home, the middle child of five. She says that her Dad’s family was all musical, and he would sing around the house. The kids all picked up that habit, and one friend said, “It’s like walking into a Disney movie when I come over. You all just burst into song!”
Life was not all sunshine though. Darla’s Dad passed away when she was 15. She says, “That’s how I came to know who the Lord is in a really, really, real way, because it changed everything I believed about who God was. When my aunt came in to tell me he had passed away, I immediately thought, ‘Oh my gosh! I’m fatherless now.’ Even before I finished it in my head, I heard God say, ‘I’m your father.’” Darla started writing songs to help deal with all the emotions, sad, sad songs at first, but over time the songs changed to reflect the things that she was learning about the Lord. “Dad dying made Him more real because I spent a lot more time with the Lord. As real and hard as grief is, He was even more real in being able to comfort me. If I hadn’t gone through all of that, I wouldn’t know God to be a faithful father and counselor, who counsels us through all the feelings we don’t understand. My favorite verse is ‘You’ve turned my mourning into dancing. You’ve taken my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness.’ He reminds me that I’ll always have joy in Him if I choose to hold on to it or receive it. He reminds me that I have freedom in Him, and that joy is a promise for those who want what His heart wants.”

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Jeff Robards

by: Erin Keller

12/08/2019

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Jeff’s is a life that has been transformed by the power of relationship. Jeff didn’t have any Christian influences in his life as he was growing up. He just tried to live life as a “good person.”

Jeff met Bill and Lauri Williams in 2000 when Jeff was coaching soccer and their daughter Sarah was on the team. Jeff says, “Bill invited us to church and we went. We weren’t searching. We didn’t know that we needed the Lord. We just liked Bill and Lauri and said, ‘Okay, we’ll try it.’ I went to church for about a year and a… read more

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Jeff’s is a life that has been transformed by the power of relationship. Jeff didn’t have any Christian influences in his life as he was growing up. He just tried to live life as a “good person.”

Jeff met Bill and Lauri Williams in 2000 when Jeff was coaching soccer and their daughter Sarah was on the team. Jeff says, “Bill invited us to church and we went. We weren’t searching. We didn’t know that we needed the Lord. We just liked Bill and Lauri and said, ‘Okay, we’ll try it.’ I went to church for about a year and a half before I decided I did need Jesus. I accepted the Lord when I was 27 and got baptized within a couple of months after that, and I just thank the Lord that he put me in some good teaching classes for several years.”
Since then, Jeff has spent years on the host team, as an usher, and for the past five years he has been teaching a class on Wednesday nights. One of the things that has changed the most for Jeff is his desire to connect with people. “I didn’t used to like to interact with people, but as I’ve gotten a little more comfortable with it, I like that part more than anything. I’ve learned it’s not about me. It’s more about that first impression and letting people know that somebody sees them and makes them feel comfortable and welcome.” For the past year or so, Jeff has taken on the role of scheduling all the host team and ushers.
Because of one friendship, one person’s willingness to invite Jeff to church, Jeff’s life and the life of his family and countless others has been forever changed. Would you like to be that one person for someone else? Consider inviting someone to church with you, or getting involved in the host team or another ministry. One person does make a difference.

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Merri Logue

by: Erin Keller

12/01/2019

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The church is so blessed to have Merri working in the facilities department here at Community Church, but Merri will tell you she is the one who is blessed. The body of Christ that is Community Church was there for her as her husband, JL, battled lung cancer and after he died. The Sunday after JL’s funeral Merri was in church, and the sermon was about giving God our problems. “Pastor Bill preached a lesson about visualizing your problems in the palm of your hand and lifting them to God, just letting Him have them. I was at my… read more

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The church is so blessed to have Merri working in the facilities department here at Community Church, but Merri will tell you she is the one who is blessed. The body of Christ that is Community Church was there for her as her husband, JL, battled lung cancer and after he died. The Sunday after JL’s funeral Merri was in church, and the sermon was about giving God our problems. “Pastor Bill preached a lesson about visualizing your problems in the palm of your hand and lifting them to God, just letting Him have them. I was at my wit’s end, and I remember doing that. I raised my hands to God, and literally a weight came off my shoulders. The made all the difference in the world. Everything fell into place. Now I do that every single day during my private time. God is teaching me to stay in His Word and sit in His lap and rely on Him, that He’s been there for me this whole time. He’s made me realize why I went through what I did. It was so I can help. Whenever I find out someone has cancer, or lung cancer especially, I feel drawn to them and feel like I am there to help them and to help their family and loved ones. I can see the doors that were opened, the doors that were closed, and it has made my faith stronger. I have a war room in my house that is covered with post-its of people that I pray for. I rely on Him with everything.”

Merry attended the grief group that the church hosts, and about six months after JL’s death, she started volunteering in the church office and then came on staff. Now Merri does the purchasing and supply inventory, as well as supervising the cleaning crew. “I love working here. I love being here. I love volunteering my time. I’m so thankful for everyone who has stepped up to help take care of the property. It makes everything so much easier for Alberto and me.”

God designed us to do life in community. Ask yourself, “Who does God want to be for me in this trial?” And ask yourself, “Who can I walk alongside in their trials?” May we be the hands and feet of Jesus to each other.

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General T. L. Daniels

by: Erin Keller

11/24/2019

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No one in Guthrie and surrounding areas has to go without a Thanksgiving dinner thanks to the vision and desire of General Tommy Lee Daniels.

Tommy Lee Daniels was born and raised in Guthrie and served in the U.S. Air Force and then in the the Oklahoma Air National Guard and at the Pentagon. It was important for him to give back to the community that had supported him. He fully funded the initial event in 1997, and the Guthrie community has embraced and supported his vision for 22 years.

The dinner is held on Thanksgiving Day from 11:30 am to… read more

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No one in Guthrie and surrounding areas has to go without a Thanksgiving dinner thanks to the vision and desire of General Tommy Lee Daniels.

Tommy Lee Daniels was born and raised in Guthrie and served in the U.S. Air Force and then in the the Oklahoma Air National Guard and at the Pentagon. It was important for him to give back to the community that had supported him. He fully funded the initial event in 1997, and the Guthrie community has embraced and supported his vision for 22 years.

The dinner is held on Thanksgiving Day from 11:30 am to 2 p.m at the American Legion Center, 123 N. 1st Street in Guthrie, and is catered by Chef Yvette Curry, a former culinary instructor at Guthrie Job Corps, who will prepare meals for about 800 people. There will be give-aways, good food, fellowship and more during the event. The feast is open to anyone who would like to come and enjoy the fellowship of the meal or have one delivered. Meals are delivered from Crescent to Langston to people who are alone or homebound, to the jail, to police and firemen who have to work on Thanksgiving, to workers at convenience stores, and to students at Langston University and Guthrie Job Corps who can’t make it home for Thanksgiving.

Giving back was the passion of General Daniels, and as followers of Jesus, we are commanded and blessed by giving to our community. The General T. L. Daniels Thanksgiving Dinner is a great opportunity for the members of Community Church to serve alongside members of the “Big C Church” to spread His love and caring to the people of Guthrie. Come to eat and visit with people from the community, or come to serve. Volunteers will meet at the American Legion at 10:30 on Thanksgiving morning to set up for the meal, including unloading the truck, dressing tables, plating food, Another way to serve is to donate gift cards in various amounts to places like Walmart or the Dollar Tree to be given as door prizes at the event.

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Allen & Sheri Brown

by: Erin Keller

11/17/2019

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Allen and Sheri did not grow up in church, but each had a family member that planted seeds of God’s truth in their hearts. Sheri’s grandmother was the daughter of a Baptist preacher, and Allen’s mother would read the Bible to him, mostly, he says, because he needed it. “She was big on the Ten Commandments because I was a wild child.”

Shortly after they were married 54 years ago, Allen and Sheri started attending a little country church on the west side of Guthrie and were baptized. Since that time they have been active and contributing followers of Jesus.

Allen… read more

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Allen and Sheri did not grow up in church, but each had a family member that planted seeds of God’s truth in their hearts. Sheri’s grandmother was the daughter of a Baptist preacher, and Allen’s mother would read the Bible to him, mostly, he says, because he needed it. “She was big on the Ten Commandments because I was a wild child.”

Shortly after they were married 54 years ago, Allen and Sheri started attending a little country church on the west side of Guthrie and were baptized. Since that time they have been active and contributing followers of Jesus.

Allen and Sheri started attending Community Church in 2016. Sheri says, “The first time we walked into the church, we felt the love. This is where we needed to be.” Once again they jumped in to serve. They organized and led a team to serve food for the Newcomers Lunches for a time, they prepare the communion trays, serve on the Host Team, and are now sharing their passion for travel with adults in the congregation through Travel with Friends. Of serving on the host team, Allen says, “We really enjoy interacting with people out here in the lobby on the Host Team. I’ve made some good friends.” Sheri adds, “It’s like second family.”

Travel with Friends is a new ministry at Community Church. Allen and Sheri love to travel and see different places. They lived in an RV for eight years, and after they sold the RV, they started taking bus tours. Now they are bringing that love of travel to Community. Sheri says, “Traveling is a lot of fun. You get to know people so much better when you do stuff like that with them.”

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Tyler Rudek

by: Erin Keller

11/10/2019

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God takes our passions and uses them in unexpected ways. Tyler Rudek has always been fascinated with medicine and anything medical. He worked as an EMT and the more critical the situation, the more he thrived. His ultimate desire was to become a flight nurse on a helicopter. He says, “I loved meeting people at that biggest crisis point in their lives and having the skill and technique to rescue them. I loved the adrenaline rush.” Today, God has taken that passion for people in crisis and He uses Tyler’s skills to rescue their souls.

Tyler is the second of four… read more

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God takes our passions and uses them in unexpected ways. Tyler Rudek has always been fascinated with medicine and anything medical. He worked as an EMT and the more critical the situation, the more he thrived. His ultimate desire was to become a flight nurse on a helicopter. He says, “I loved meeting people at that biggest crisis point in their lives and having the skill and technique to rescue them. I loved the adrenaline rush.” Today, God has taken that passion for people in crisis and He uses Tyler’s skills to rescue their souls.

Tyler is the second of four boys in his family. His father is a preacher who has specialized in helping struggling churches to heal and grow, so Tyler grew up in church doing whatever was necessary, from setting up chairs for the services to greeting people to running the sound system. After one move to a particularly quiet town, Tyler and his brothers all started playing musical instruments and so added leading worship to the things they did at church. Tyler says that his dad led by example and taught him to love people and to develop relationships with people by meeting their needs. “That’s the stuff I love to do, to be able to be out and love on people, to hear their story and learn from them.”

Tyler and his wife, Rachel, were invited to visit Community Church in 2016 and knew right away that this was meant to be home. Tyler says, “It’s just incredible that God’s presence is here…. He’s up to something crazy awesome here.”

So now Tyler gets his adrenaline rush from watching people be touched by God and seeing their lives changed. “It never gets old to see someone come and their life is intersected with the cross, with all that God is, when people realize the goodness of God for the very first time or when God reveals Himself in a new way. I know it’s all through the power of God, but anything I get to do to be a part of that never gets old. That’s the euphoria, I guess, that I get to be a part of it, and it just encourages me to keep pressing on no matter what I’m walking through.”yler and his wife, Rachel, were invited to visit Community Church in 2016 and knew right away that this was meant to be home. Tyler says, “It’s just incredible that God’s presence is here…. He’s up to something crazy awesome here.”
So now Tyler gets his adrenaline rush from watching people be touched by God and seeing their lives changed. “It never gets old to see someone come and their life is intersected with the cross, with all that God is, when people realize the goodness of God for the very first time or when God reveals Himself in a new way. I know it’s all through the power of God, but anything I get to do to be a part of that never gets old. That’s the euphoria, I guess, that I get to be a part of it, and it just encourages me to keep pressing on no matter what I’m walking through.”

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Prim Cockrell-Dunn

by: Erin Keller

11/03/2019

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“I am a grateful believer in Jesus Christ.” Those are the words Prim likes to use when she meets someone new. “When you say that to somebody, they know immediately where you stand.”

Prim remembers her grandmother spending time in her Bible every day, but she was raised a Catholic. Prim trained horses and their riders. Many of them became world champions, and Prim moved in the circles of the rich and powerful. After her husband Andy died, Prim married a man who turned out to be abusive, and it was during that time that she started seeking the truth.… read more

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“I am a grateful believer in Jesus Christ.” Those are the words Prim likes to use when she meets someone new. “When you say that to somebody, they know immediately where you stand.”

Prim remembers her grandmother spending time in her Bible every day, but she was raised a Catholic. Prim trained horses and their riders. Many of them became world champions, and Prim moved in the circles of the rich and powerful. After her husband Andy died, Prim married a man who turned out to be abusive, and it was during that time that she started seeking the truth. The seeds planted by her grandmother and the preacher took root and Prim started to read the Bible. As she looks back, she can see God’s provision and direction all over her life. She went to Celebrate Recovery to learn how to help people caught in addiction, but God used CR to heal Prim. She spent 15 years running a therapeutic riding center that focused on inner city kids and on women caught up in prostitution and addiction. When God told her it was time to sell the ranch, she was reluctant, but again He opened and closed doors in such a way that it was clear it was His calling.

Now Prim’s calling is to teach two-year-olds in Community Church’s Mothers’ Day Out program, and she loves it! She feels that God has told her just to plant the seeds of God’s love so that when hard times come, those two-year-olds can remember Prim and her love for the Word, just as she remembers her grandmother.
Prim says, “When God closes a door, let Him close it because He has other great doors to open up. We all have choices. We can be like the Israelites and spend 40 years to learn the lesson, or we can surrender and get to the Promised Land in two days. God is here. He wants the best for us. We are the ones making the choices not to believe. What is key to remember is that God never gives up on His people. He loves us unconditionally, and the scars that we get through our trials are there so that we can learn how faithful He is. I serve a God who is unbelievable. We just have to count our blessings and look for our miracles, because there are plenty.”

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Lisa Trask

by: Erin Keller

10/27/2019

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“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9. That is definitely true in the life of Lisa Trask. Her plan was to get her law degree, become an agricultural lobbyist and a career woman. Children were definitely not part of her plans. But where has God called her? And where has she happily worked for over a decade? You guessed it, with children and their parents. And God has opened the door each step of the way.
After deciding that the hours demanded of a lawyer were not for her, Lisa got… read more

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“In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9. That is definitely true in the life of Lisa Trask. Her plan was to get her law degree, become an agricultural lobbyist and a career woman. Children were definitely not part of her plans. But where has God called her? And where has she happily worked for over a decade? You guessed it, with children and their parents. And God has opened the door each step of the way.
After deciding that the hours demanded of a lawyer were not for her, Lisa got a job as a school secretary. She discovered that she loved the administrative side of that job, and she loved being able to be “the happy lady” for the kids at school. When she and her husband, Michael moved to Guthrie, they attended Henderson Hills for several years and she worked in the Mothers’ Day Out program there until a couple of years ago, when she was given a leadership role in the Mothers’ Day Out program here at Community. “I’ve flourished. I love our families. I love our kids. I love being able to teach teachers, these women who think ‘oh, I’m just a Mom,’ and help them to take ownership of the fact that they are important and valued and what they do here matters. At my old program a lot of the families were churched. Here it’s kind of the opposite, so I love that we are Jesus for these families. We are the reason that the kids talk about Jesus and know Jesus and that He made them special. And I just love that we get to pour that light into them, and I’m honored that the parents feel safe enough to leave their kids here even if they aren’t churched themselves or go to a different church or whatever their background is.”

These days Lisa tries hard to make plans and goals with a loose grip so that God can direct her steps. “If I had followed my path, cycles would have been repeated, generational curses would have been passed on and growth would not have happened. I would not have the faith that I have now.” How will you let God direct your steps? His plans are always perfect for you.

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Charlie Jones

by: Erin Keller

10/20/2019

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If you hear the words “Operation Christmas Child,” chances are that Jean Ingram is the speaker. Jean is the voice of Operation Christmas Child (OCC) in Guthrie and surrounding towns, and she is passionate about the mission of the organization: evangelism, discipleship and multiplication. She says, “You see that being carried out even in what we (the local church) are doing. First of all, it’s to evangelize and to tell people about the Lord. It’s not just about a box or the gifts. Then discipleship means that the kids are being discipled afterwards to learn how to be a follower… read more

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If you hear the words “Operation Christmas Child,” chances are that Jean Ingram is the speaker. Jean is the voice of Operation Christmas Child (OCC) in Guthrie and surrounding towns, and she is passionate about the mission of the organization: evangelism, discipleship and multiplication. She says, “You see that being carried out even in what we (the local church) are doing. First of all, it’s to evangelize and to tell people about the Lord. It’s not just about a box or the gifts. Then discipleship means that the kids are being discipled afterwards to learn how to be a follower of Christ, and the multiplication happens when they take it into their homes. I see multiplication happening in Guthrie because we are able to share it. Everywhere we can say, ‘Would you like to hear about it?’”

Jean says she’s a “country girl from Deatsville, Alabama.” Her parents were devout followers of Jesus, and the ladies in their little church who influenced her the most were the ones who loved God’s Word. “They taught me just to love Jesus. I don’t remember when I didn’t love him,” she says.

She became a special education teacher and taught for three or four years, but she says God’s call on her life was to do fulltime work for the Lord one day. After she and her husband, Al, moved to Pensacola, Florida, she volunteered at the church and eventually was asked to lead the children’s ministry, which she did for 25 years, until she and Al moved to Guthrie to be closer to their grandchildren. She had packed shoeboxes for years, but once in Guthrie she jumped in and is now a year-around volunteer and is the Prayer Mobilization Coordinator for this area. Jean also teaches in the Community Kids ministry here at Community. “I know how important it is to reach little kids for Jesus. I love them. I love playing with them…. God says you’ve got to use your gifts no matter where you are…. My purpose is to prepare, not just myself, but other people around me. How many people will I take to heaven with me? That’s what life’s about.”

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