Guest Blogger: My Wife – Heather Cotner

Fitness 2

When my husband asked me to be a guest blogger on his site I was excited and nervous, but before I ramble on I will tell you a little bit about myself and the topic I would like to discuss. My name is Heather Cotner and I am the wife of David Cotner III (Lead Pastor of Prairie Flower Baptist Church), mother of two wonderful children, and a Health and Fitness Coach through Beachbody! After getting married, I was able to carry out my passion of helping others through nursing for about four years. I enjoyed being able to be with people on their best and worst days, help teach others how to live healthier, and be able to grieve with people who had lost loved ones.

After leaving a job in nursing to become a stay-at-home mother, I still had the passion of helping others. So I decided to become a Health and Fitness Coach through Beachbody while still doing the most important work of raising my children. Now many of you may think that fitness is just physical, but I would beg to differ and say that there are a lot of similarities between physical and spiritual fitness.

In I Corinthians 6: 19 it states, “…your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God…”. So, if you are a born again believer, you have the Holy Spirit indwelling you and you should do everything you can to take care of the body that God has given you. Thus, taking care of yourself is not just physical, but also spiritual. That is to say, because the Holy Spirit lives inside of you, you should want to take care of your physical body by eating well and exercising just as you should want to learn more about God and His Word and be spiritually strong.  No one is exempt from taking time to care for their physical body or exempt from having a relationship with God through prayer and daily devotions.

Another similarity between physical and spiritual fitness would be the aspect of daily commitment.  Just like you never reach physical perfection (on earth of course) you will never reach spiritual perfection either.  Daily you have to choose to make healthy choices when it comes to food, exercise, and taking care of yourself; just as daily you have to choose to take the time to pray, do your devotions, and have a relationship with God.  Just like eating one healthy meal doesn’t make you skinny, and eating one unhealthy meal doesn’t make you overweight; in the same way, one prayer and devotional reading doesn’t make you righteous – it is a daily commitment to pursue!

Balance is also key! No matter what age you are, what profession you are in, what hobbies you have (or don’t have), everyone needs to have balance in their lives. Balancing your physical life would mean not working out continually all day every day and allowing yourself to enjoy the sweets every now and then.  There is also balancing that is done in your spiritual life.  Yes, you probably don’t have the time to read your Bible for 10 hours a day and pray for 5 hours a day, but there is time that you can set aside to have your quiet time with God and pray.  There are also other times throughout the day to say a quick prayer and refocus your life around God’s perspective instead of your own.

Lastly, I will talk about how both physical and spiritual fitness will change with time and age.  Usually when you are young, you have the ability to do some crazy workouts with your body and push yourself to your maximum potential, but with age one usually has to tone down the workouts and do things less physically demanding.  But with spiritual fitness it is usually the complete opposite! With time you should be increasing in your fitness instead of decreasing.  What I mean by that is usually when you just start out as a Christian you are learning, and your knowledge base is quite weak, but with time in God’s Word and a daily relationship with Him your faith should grow, and so should your knowledge of His Word!  The key word here is “should”.  Bottom line…just as your physical fitness may change with time so should your spiritual fitness.

In I Timothy 4:8 it states, “For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come.” People around you may see that you are physically fit, but what they can’t see is if you are spiritually fit.  Yes, you should take the time to care for your physical body through healthy eating and exercise, but you should not let that overtake working out and caring for your spiritual fitness.  Increasing in your knowledge of God’s Word, praying, and having a daily walk with Christ should be the motivating factor for your day which will benefit you not only today but also in the life to come!


Easter On The Prairie: You’re Invited!

Easter Sunday 2016

Prairie Flower members and friends, be sure to use this image to invite all of your family and friends to our Easter Celebration Service at PFBC on Sunday, March 27! You can screenshot the image (or just share the blog link) and then post it to your Facebook or Instagram account. As you do, be sure to use the hashtags #HeIsRisen #TrueLove #PFBC and #PrairieStrong. Also, be sure to bathe this whole service in earnest, passionate prayer.

How Faith Baptist Bible College Prepared Us For Ministry

Dave and Jon #1

Life is better with a buddy. Life is sweeter with a friend. I am truly grateful for the opportunity to engage in team ministry with Pastor Jon Rocha. We have already experienced so much together…and both of us are incredibly grateful for how Faith Baptist Bible College (our alma mater) prepared us for life and ministry.

In preparation for an advertisement that our alma mater is doing on us, we were required to get some photos of us taken (which was tons of fun) and prepare short statements on how Faith prepared us for life and ministry. This is what we had to say:

Pastor Dave’s Statement: Everyone has a certain set of lenses on when it comes to processing people and events in life. The question is: What kind of lenses do you have on? Are they lenses of worldly wisdom or godly wisdom? At Faith Baptist Bible College (FBBC), I was equipped with the right set of eyewear to minister effectively in a quickly changing, complex world.

We have people in our churches who are hurting because of sin and selfishness. In my short time in the pastorate, I have already witnessed the devastation of infidelity, drug abuse, incest, porn, and divorce. We have people in our pews that struggle daily with depression, anxiety, fear, and loneliness. In our churches, we have marriage strife, parenting turmoil, and work complications. You can literally go from preparing a sermon on a Tuesday afternoon to actively engaging in intense crisis counseling. This is life. This is ministry. And life and ministry come at you fast and you better be rightly equipped!

At FBBC, I was given some spectacles with the right prescription, namely, biblical, Christ-exalting, God-glorifying lenses! I am beyond grateful for my education at FBBC because I was equipped for more than ministry…I was equipped for life.

Pastor Jon’s Statement: Faith was one of the best experiences of my life. I learned much about God and His Word at Faith, and He has used many of those same things to help me be successful in my ministry here at Prairie Flower. It would take me longer than you would like to describe all the ways Faith has prepared me, so I’ll just give my top two.

The first thing that God used was the teaching staff. The teachers at Faith are a huge help, both inside and outside of the classroom. They are willing to discuss hard topics in class, stay after class, or even meet up later in order to help me learn and understand. They are godly, smart, and personable people who have a ton of experience in their fields. I am truly thankful for them.

The second thing that God used was the abundance of opportunities. There are many different ways to get involved in extra-curricular activities. While at Faith, I was able to be involved in a local church, help with campus activities, go to special events, play basketball, and meet tons of people (including my wife, my best friend, and my, now, head pastor) that will forever impact my life. Again, it was truly one of the best things God ever brought into my life.

Prairie Flower, we both find it an incredible privilege and true joy to shepherd your hearts and lives. Thank you for giving to us this immense privilege. We love you guys…we desire nothing but your growth in godliness and contentment…and (Lord willing) we’ll see you all soon. God bless!