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Posts Tagged ‘Happiness

“Go Preach ‘Em Happy”

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“Go Preach Em Happy”

by Pastor Roy Barnhill

Pastor Roy Barnhill

I introduce to you Rev. Virgil Cox.  Some may not know him, so allow this short biography.

Virgil Cox was raised in St. Louis by his parents Virgil (Deacon) and Christine Cox. As a family, they attended White Way Tabernacle, pastored by Walter Guinn.

Virgil Jr. was 16 years old in 1945.  The “merger” of two oneness organizations was in progress and Virgil was a teenage witness to this historical moment that was being held at White Way. In those days, ministers did not stay in three or four star hotels but rather, were invited to stay in the saint’s homes. Several highly esteemed elders stayed in the Cox home.

During the “merger” and young Virgil was privileged to meet many of them who had come to this historical conference, which convened in St. Louis.

Virgil Cox pastored in Vichy, Missouri and later in Jefferson City, Missouri.  From Jefferson City he was asked to come to Bogalusa, LA where he pastored until his retirement. His son, Kevin Cox, is now District Superintendent of LA.

Through the years, I kept contact with Bro. Cox and would call him on a regular basis just to hear him tell again how things use to be in the “good ole days” and how times have changed.

We never talked about church growth principles, as such, but the advice he gave me before each call was ended, has been some of the best advice on growing people and growing a church. His closing words would always be, “Roy, Go Preach ‘Em Happy”.

After hearing this advice for several months, my curiosity got the best of me and I asked, “Bro. Cox, what do you mean, “Go Preach ‘Em Happy”?

What I heard next should be achieved in People Principles 101.  Bro. Cox shared with me how people are beat up and beat down by life’s hardships and hurts, so when they come to your church on Sunday, they need to hear a message of hope.

Their week may have included a loss of a job, a foreclosure notice, a rebellious teenager that is dealing them much heartache or a companion that has walked out.

Bro. Cox continued, Preach encouragement. Preach hope. Preach they can make it. Preach that Jesus loves them.  Preach that prayer changes things.  Go Preach ‘Em Happy.

Life’s greatest discovery is, if you will love people, they will love you in return. People gravitate to someone who will tell them there is hope in this life and in the life to come. Step One in growing a church is…

Go Preach ‘Em Happy!

Written by Martyn Ballestero

November 9, 2011 at 12:49 pm

Posted in Comfort, Ministry, Pastors

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The Misery Index

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The Misery Index

That term somehow caught me by surprise. Years ago, I wasn’t aware of a Misery Index. Now, we read about it’s existence when times get tough. Our unemployment is horrible. Inflation is scary. Gas prices are unbelievable and home foreclosures are frightening. So an index was created to measure how miserable we really are.

“The misery index was initiated by economist Arthur Okun, an adviser to President Lyndon Johnson in the 1960’s. It is simply the unemployment rate added to the inflation rate. It is assumed that both a higher rate of unemployment and a worsening of inflation both create economic and social costs for a country. A combination of rising inflation and more people out of work implies a deterioration in economic performance and a rise in the misery index.”

Since I lack training in economic understanding, I must trust their calculations. This weekend, The Drudge Report said the Misery Index in America is the worst it’s been in 28 years.

The Misery Index may be a name that has only been around for 50 years or so, but the condition of misery has been known to God since Genesis chapter one.

When God created the heavens and the earth, it mentions that darkness covered the whole world.

Gen. 1:2 And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

The Hebrew word for darkness is from  (chashak); the dark; hence (literal) darkness; figurative misery, destruction, death, ignorance, sorrow, wickedness :- dark (-ness), night, obscurity.

Strong’s Greek & Hebrew Dictionary.

Figuratively, the world was wrapped up in misery when God set out to work His plan for man.

The very first words that He spoke were, “Let there be light.”

Gen. 1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

The Hebrew word for light is from (‘owr); illumination or (concrete) luminary (in every sense, including lightning, happiness, etc.) :- bright, clear, + day, light (-ning), morning, sun.

Strong’s Greek & Hebrew Dictionary.

God’s first desire for the world was Light, or Happiness. Jesus said in the New Testament, that He was the Light or Happiness of the World. He also said that we were to be the light or happiness of the world after he departed.

Revelation chapter three tells a sad tale of woe. The Laodicean Church was miserable and didn’t even know that it was.

Rev. 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

Rev. 3:15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.

Rev. 3:16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

Rev. 3:17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

Rev. 3:18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.

The Misery Index is high in Laodicean Churches. They feel they are rich and have everything they need. But God sees the hearts and He pronounced their lifestyle as miserable. If God says their Misery Index is high, then that point is unarguable.

Holy Ghost filled people who are pleasing God are the happiest people in the world. There is no misery in the term, “Joy unspeakable and full of glory.”

Ye are the happiness (light) of the world.

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 20, 2011 at 10:06 am