Sister to Sister: PTP Pinnacle (and shirts and mugs)

11891891_10153223399279069_8485087777444861017_oPolishing the Pulpit 2015 is history and we have been to the pinnacle of fellowship, study, singing and restoration—perhaps, the pinnacle this side of eternity. You just need to plan now for next year and make it a financial and scheduling priority. You can go to heaven without going to PTP, of course. It’s just more difficult to imagine heaven if you’ve not enjoyed fellowship this sweet on time’s side of eternity. I’m so blessed to have the greatest family surrounding and blessing me there;  and then to have my physical family with me at PTP is icing on the cake!11218835_1629664520583902_8069685276907420456_n

All of the Colley-Giselbach gang came back to our hotel room and scrunched into one hotel room for the afternoon, after most of you left, and took a long and much-needed nap. Ezra woke up all smiles and ready to go again. So it was out for pizza and dessert at the Chocolate Monkey. Caleb bought chocolates for his mother (He knows the way to my heart!), and Ben just edged out Hannah in a bean bag toss. We missed having Rebekah tonight, but next year, she’ll get to stay with us for the whole week, too.  Already, we can’t wait!

Of course the new Digging Deep study was announced here last Tuesday. I’m hoping you’re diligently inviting sisters and friends to join in. It’s a small window of the year in which you can very easily and effectively evangelize through this group by inviting new participants. I hope you’re making your list. I’m praying for a year of significant growth and strength for our families and congregations as a result. God can do big things through little people like us!11890916_10152975372256384_186018545480327946_n

Several sisters came on stage as finishers of the study that concludes on August 31st and they were awarded these pretty green and coral Digging Deep shirts.
One sister, Pam Christopher, of Pulaski, Tennessee was present who has completed every last bit of all four years of the study. I loved handing her the first
11953233_10152977418671384_9093695292831496660_nbrand new Digging Deep travel mug. Nobody studies, of course, for these teeny prizes, but it’s a fun way to say “Thanks for the encouragement and leadership in study.”

If you want a shirt and mug, there’s a special PTP price happening now.  The final day to order shirts will be September 18th. Mugs will be sold until all gone at $12.00 each.

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I don’t have a t-shirt yet, but am excited to get mine in the next batch, along with any of you who order. So take a look.

May I just finally say that I do not know how or why I get to be blessed by the encouragement of hundreds of the best people on the planet, but I remain deeply thankful for my sisters around the world who keep on praying for me and studying the Word with me and raising up children and grandchildren for His service. There are great challenges coming our way at the hands of the devil through those people who are given to humanism and relativism in our post modern culture. 11934957_10153223401374069_98564377511046029_nI am so thankful for the strength that we muster together as women of God serving our husbands and families for His great Cause today.11057325_10153223402374069_621797771850264280_n

So go! Take the Digging Deeper dare for 2015-2016. You’ve got this!11896250_10152977036441384_3876974688294082380_n

Sister to Sister: TOMORROW!!! Live Podcast…New Digging Deep Study

11951697_10152971997926384_2734780424500354200_oTears swell in my eyes when I have the opportunity to worship my Lord with 2000 people on a Sunday morning. It’s something I only get to do about twice a year. I know that worshiping the Lord should always fill me with emotions of reverence and gratitude. Surely it’s the holy Object of worship more than the people with whom we are worshiping that’s evokes awe and joy and respect. But I think the reason the large crowd touches my heart in deeper places is that it truly is a foretaste of heaven. It’s profoundly encouraging to know that God’s people are many and that they are eternally triumphant. It’s as if we’re already on the giant cruiser together to the shore where there is no more parting, sorrow and dying. You can hear the boatman’s call best in places like Polishing the Pulpit (www.polishingthepulpit.com).

And speaking of…I hope you plan to join us tomorrow at 2:30 EST for the live podcast of Digging Deep (http://livestream.com/whcoc/for-women). It’s at once the end of a study that has profoundly affected me  and the beginning of a new study. I hope you are adding friends to the facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/groups/282349391779769/) and personally inviting them to study along in a practical new study that starts on September 1st. It’s a helpful study for both Christians and non-Christians. My dream is that some soul will be brought to the Lord through this year’s study. I think it will happen with prayer and lots of invitations to the study. What a great answer to this year’s prayer study that will be!

Next, I hope you will join us for “Sweet Hour of Prayer” tomorrow night via lifestream as well (8:15 EST). Today is the last day to email me your prayer requests or, if you are here on site, you may put them in the box on the stage in ballroom A. (I’ll have some request forms at the remainder of my lessons there in that room.) We’ll spend about an hour talking to our Father about the specific requests that our Digging Deep ladies have made. Prayer is not our idea. It’s God’s method of hearing and answering us. It will be a “blessed hour of prayer when our hearts lowly blend and we gather through Jesus, our Savior and friend.”

So join us for both! You’ll be blessed. I’ll be encouraged. Prayers will be heard, as always. We don’t have to be together for God to be hearing us, but being together sure blesses OUR hearts!   (Our technology is limited here due to so many people using the internet at once, but we are going to do our very best to bring it to you!)

Finally, can I just say that PTP is more wonderful with Ezra. Here he is right this moment in my hotel room bed, while his mom is speaking to teen girls. As I sat in that room of 2000 yesterday morning praising Him, I thought about the fact that there was so much to be praising Him for right there in my lap, on both sides of me, and down the row. If Jesus comes on a day while we are praising the Lord together as a family at PTP, it will seem but a short trip through the clouds to glory! Perhaps that observation is short-sighted and made simply because I haven’t seen heaven, but for now great assemblies of his people, even in a place where we still have to pray for strength for ourselves  and for sick, lost and grieving people—those grand gatherings are still pretty wonderful.

Sister to Sister: This and That and 2nd Generation PTP!

Banner BTS 2015

This weekend, just under 4000 people are headed to Sevierville, Tennessee  to participate in a HUGE blessing: Polishing the Pulpit . You can read about it here: www.polishingthepulpit.com. I do not know why or how I get the blessing of talking to ladies in this forum, but I am so thankful that I do. It challenges me, encourages me and makes me long for heaven. I hope you will make plans to come, if not this year, next year. I believe it is the most encouraging thing I do each year, so I want to keep doing it. I want my children to do it every year. I believe it is one thing that helps them grow and be prepared for the parenting challenges they will face in their young families. I want my elders to get to do it. There are rich and practical classes for them. I want my preacher to get to go. In fact, I hope he can ride with me!

My brain is in the overload mode—moving close to the explode mode! I get to talk about so many topics about which I’m zealous.…about being the light in a practical way, about how to have family devotionals in our busy world, about how to build self-esteem in our kids, about how to make them selfless….And I get to introduce the brand new 2015-2016 Digging Deep study. This happens from the ballroom at PTP, but is live to you at http://livestream.com/whcoc/for-women. I hope you will join us next Tuesday at 2:30 EST for this exciting time. Maybe the period I am looking forward to the most is the “Sweet Hour of Prayer” with sisters from all over the world. One room, one God, our Father, listening to his women children as we pray for each other’s most important needs and struggles. This is strengthening and I cannot wait. I have been pretty overwhelmed with the day-to-day time-challenges, which are really blessings, that I need this time with my sisters before the throne. And yet, I am so thankful that I have access to the throne of my Father whether there is a scheduled time of prayer or not. He is so merciful to let me come before Him at any time, much less all the time! (You can email me your prayer requests at this address: ddprayers2015@gmail.com.)

I am leaving behind unfinished business. But I will be praying about studies and visitors and sweet people who’ve made bold transitions in life. I will be praying for my dad and thanking God for my sister, Sami, who will be looking in on Dad and is always so attentive to his needs (and wants!). In fact, I am thankful for a whole list of people who are very good to him all the time! So blessed is what I am!

Lastly, the Back-to-School sale at The Colley house just has one week to go. So order now or forever hold your peace! You can find that here: http://thecolleyhouse.org/store#!/~/category/id=7007069&offset=0&sort=normal.

Oh, and finish up that August study. Only about a dozen more days till we kick off a brand new study. Invite your friends to the Digging Deep Facebook page. This next year’s study is great for those who are not yet Christians.

Have a great time at PTP or wherever you finish out your week for Him and live it like you know we WILL ultimately all be at the same gathering!

PS. Did I mention that this will be Ezra’s first year to experience PTP OUTSIDE the womb? Could that be one reason my expectations for enjoyment are high this year? We are definitely into the second generation of PTP kids now! In fact, Ezra’s mom and her brother were the first teenagers ever to attend PTP! Just think of that! =)

Sister to Sister: Not too Late to Register!

logoFAQsofLifeThe FAQs of Life Women’s Seminar at West Huntsville Church of Christ is now only thirteen days away. We have girlfriends registered from six states and free housing still available. Plans are coming together for a great informal session of prayer and answers to evangelism questions on Friday night followed by visiting together over desserts. I believe our participation will enhance our chances of reaching friends who might not otherwise be saved. I believe this because each of our past experiences are different and we can help each other with evangelism ideas and strategies. Different tactics may be more effective with different kinds of people and in varying situations (Jude 21-23). Let’s help each other win souls.

Saturday will include a light continental breakfast, three sessions of “open line” questions and answers (any question in any way related to the Scriptures will be discussed as time allows), and a lunch that we promise will be delicious! (Can you tell we are excited about this?) You can email your questions in advance to email diggingdeepingodsword@gmail.com or tweet them using the hashtag #FAQsofLife. Feel free to also submit them at any time during the seminar.

Some of the questions we have so far include:

When I look around I see so many great parents who have lost their children to the world. Can you advise me of things I need to be doing to make sure my kids don’t walk away? I know there are no guarantees, but I don’t want to miss anything.

Should I allow my teenager to attend his Bible school class if the teacher believes social drinking is acceptable behavior?

If a congregation does not have elders, how do we insure that our classroom teachers are sound in the faith?

Is clapping in our worship music acceptable to God?

Is it sinful for elders to require attendance at classes or services other than one service on Sunday since that is the only Biblical requirement?

…and there are many more.

I hope you are planning to come. Be sure to register at http://thecolleyhouse.org/seminar and be sure to invite others from your church to come with you, if possible. Registration will be open for a few more days. We are praying that many of you will get to join us. It’s kind of exciting that the famous Diana Singing (less than one hour from our building…www.dianasinging.com) will be happening on Saturday night following the seminar. (It also happens Friday night, but we are hoping you will be with us on Friday!) It’s a phenomenon–a really good old-fashioned shed singing (tin roof and everything!) where you will hear some beautiful a cappella music involving hundreds of voices. It’s a warm-up for heaven! Saturday’s singing will start at around 7 pm and last until about midnight (Country ham biscuits are the fare at Diana.)

And finally, my heart is full of Polishing the Pulpit. If you didn’t get to watch the live Digging Deep session, I hope you will go to http://new.livestream.com/whcoc/for-women and join the excitement as we kick off a new study, “Knowing God.” It’s not for the wimpy, but I just know we will love Him more upon completion of this study of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I hope you can join us beginning on September 1st as we begin this journey through Scripture together. Please pray for all of the ladies involved and invite your friends to study along. Many who completed the last year’s study, “Sanctification,” commented that they had never studied the Bible like they did in this study. Let’s do this!

Polishing the Pulpit 2013 is history. Those who came experienced the pinnacle of spiritual enrichment. It was feasting for a week at a spiritual buffet unlike any other you will see this side of heaven, and it was doing it with your favorite people. I am profoundly grateful to the men and women in Jacksonville, Alabama, as well as the three directors who live in other places. I am deeply humbled to have been able to participate.

I am still in the hotel room. My legs are tired, my mind is swirling, and my post-PTP correspondence list is long. Glenn and I are pretty physically wasted, but our spirits are sprinting! We are ready for the autumn works that lie before us. Next weekend we will be in Collinsville, Illinois for a marriage seminar and the following weekend…well, you know where I’ll be then. Hoping to see you there!

FlyerFAQsofLife

Sister to Sister: Polishing the Pulpit 2013

(Don’t forget the live stream from PTP. Tuesday at 2:30 EST)

Cups are overflowing in Sevierville, TN this week as Polishing the Pulpit is well underway. I sat on the front row of a ginormous auditorium tonight and sang “I am Resolved” after hearing a wonderful lesson entitled “Why I Love the Church of Christ.” It’s true. I am resolved. I am resolved to seek more holiness through my days, to win more souls for Him, to be closer to my sisters in Jesus and to be more like Him in my home. I am resolved. Being with over 3000 people who are strengthening their resolves to walk in His ways is the foretaste of heaven that makes the final destination more real and more motivating than it has ever been before. I really want to go there. Sitting there on the front row flanked by my children on each side, my son-in-law and nieces on down the row and listening to my husband preach, I felt like I was almost there. “Almost heaven” is really not West Virginia at all. It’s PTP!

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I really want to have the devil firmly and finally banished from my world on one glad morning. Spending some time with members of my family in the Lord who are suffering great pain, remorse, fear and sorrow this week has made my hatred for the devil increase. I just want to be done with Him. The excruciating and debilitating emotional pain that sin brings in the lives of people is a second great motivator for me to keep living and teaching His will every day and in every venue afforded.

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One lady I spoke with tonight is from Michigan. She expressed this: “I have never been in a place where there was so much needed teaching on such a variety of subjects. I feel kind of like my spirit is just in shock. I feel kind of spiritually overwhelmed in a good way. My emotions are just brimming!”

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On Tuesday at 2:30 EST/1:30 CST, the Digging Deep Podcast will be brought to you live from Polishing the Pulpit. I hope you can join us! We will congratulate those who are here live with us and have completed the Sanctification study in its entirety. We will introduce the new study for 2013-2014 and show you where to find it online, so that you may begin the new study with us in September. I am more than a little excited about this. I hope you can join us! His providence in this fellowship and study continues to bless so many. To Him be all the glory.

Here are the words on a bookmark that was distributed in our ladies session today. The session was called “Blockbuster Passages about Sanctification.”

Sometimes Sanctification Means…

Refusing popularity…
Choosing persecution…like Elijah.
Refusing peace…
Choosing confrontation…like Joshua.
Refusing riches…
Choosing less…like Moses.
Refusing rest…
Choosing struggle…like Caleb.
Refusing acclimation…
Choosing anonymity…like the woman of Shunem.
Refusing anonymity…
Choosing leadership…like the three Hebrews.
Refusing leadership…
Choosing submission…like Sarah.
Refusing exaltation…
Choosing humility…like Paul.
Refusing the best…
Choosing what’s left…like Abraham.
Refusing to fight…
Choosing to lie down…like Isaac.
Refusing to break…
Choosing to build…like Jochebed.
Refusing to obey…
Choosing to pray…like Daniel.
Refusing to remain…
Choosing to change…like Zaccheus.
Refusing the devil…
Choosing the Lord..like Job.
Refusing ruin…
Choosing restoration…like Ezra.
Refusing security…
Choosing risk…like Esther.
Refusing discouragement…
Choosing perseverance…like Nehemiah.
Refusing to stay silent
Choosing to speak…like Peter.
Refusing the easy way out…
Choosing the cross…like Jesus.
C. Colley

The Summer Six Fitness Program for the Soul – Number 4

5Uig2xmF76nUcTYFXxAr6g-temp-upload.arsnnzgw.175x175-75Polishing the Pulpit

By far the most comprehensive lectureship of which our family has ever been a part, Polishing the Pulpit is the single most spiritually sustaining, as well. I have literally known of marriages that would likely not have survived had it not been for the nurture gained through lessons and counseling received at PTP. I’ve known of congregations whose elders left PTP ready to go home and do the hard stuff–the stuff that builds strong churches–for the first time. I have known of teens who left PTP with a renewed zeal, believing, perhaps for the first time, that they were not alone in defending faith and morality…that there is a strong support system, even among peers, through the PTP network.

Kids, parents, homeschoolers, elders, and sisters who meet one another at PTP stay in touch via email and facebook groups through the year. Families get to know other families with whom they have much in common in the Lord and look forward to the week together, sometimes even sharing accommodations while in Sevierville or planning outings together.

And outings. There’s so much to do in the area, that you will want to come early or stay late, just so you can visit a museum, take in a show, or take a hike and take in His majestic mountain wonders.

Of course, the best part of the week is a multi-track spiritual feast. There’s a track for kids, for teens, for ladies, for elders, for members, for deacons, for preachers and for preacher’s wives. The biggest problem you will have is choosing which sessions to attend. The biggest blessing this year just may be that every paid attendee gets to bring home a flash drive containing the contents of the entire week’s audio. That’s right– every lesson by every speaker! That’s almost 700 lessons!

I’ll never forget that little hotel room in Gatlinburg where 12 ladies met together once a day when our husbands convened for what was a relatively tiny PTP lectureship several years ago now. Hannah Colley was the entire children’s program! The entire ladies program was having class with me once a day. God blessed those tiny beginnings. He blessed our families, our children, our husbands and their pulpits. He blessed Allen Webster, David Barker, Eddy Gilpin and Mark Howell, PTP directors, with vision, health and helpers. He blessed the Jacksonville Church in Jacksonville, AL with resources and workers and he has blessed all participants each year through these servants.

Now it’s simply huge! It’s huge for kids when they actually meet Digger Doug and Iguana Don. It’s huge for moms when we watch our teenagers grow in their hearts for God more in a week than they have in the past year. It’s huge for women to kick off a year of meaty Bible study in the Digging Deep sessions. It’s huge for young preachers to sit at the feet of Alan Highers and Tom Holland. It’s just without doubt, the most far-reaching event happening in America today. That’s because it’s the most comprehensive, most well-attended event in our country that reaches beyond the boundaries of time and space in its effect. It reaches eternity!

Check it out at www.polishingthepulpit.com. The 2013 schedule has just been released. I hope I’ll see you there.