The next Lunch n’ Learn will be in February

Payton Clark, News Editor

Technology has become an important part of the daily lifestyle of students everywhere, and with it back and neck pain.

Monday Nov. 13, the RAWC hosted the last Lunch ‘N Learn luncheon of the semester. The event taught students about making healthy, daily lifestyle habits related to posture and back pain. Lunch was provided at 12 p.m. in GC 218-220, followed by the informational seminar from Relax the Back professional Roynell Rawson.

“What students should expect is that no matter if we’re traveling or just sleeping, that there are ways that we can improve our posture, habits and how we can improve to make a healthier version of ourselves,” Wellness Coordinator Lindsay Mitchell said before the event. “Roynell will express the ways to improve with a more hands on presentation on Monday, November 13th at noon.”

The lunch provided an approach to teaching involved in this event are in hopes to give students an opportunity to learn and understand important information for their daily lifestyles.

“The Lunch N’ Learn will provide a free lunch for all students that attend, Roynell will be speaking and will have a more hands on approach to this luncheon,” Mitchell said. “That way students will be able to grasp the topic that will be presented.”

While the Lunch ‘N Learn discussed “daily lifestyle habits,” there was a focus on posture and how people can prevent pain.

“The course for the Lunch N Learn is Lifestyle Assessment in your 24 hour day,” Rawson said. “We will be talking about posture and positions that we use during the day, that may be causing back and neck pain.”

Rawson, a representative from Relax the Back, said that it is important for students to know how to prevent and deal with back issues due to the damage technology creates.

“With the use of our technology gadget, people are having more back and neck issues and pain,” Rawson said. “We are not using our gadgets in appropriate and correct posture that is creating us to change our back and neck postures.  Especially in our younger generations.”

The last Lunch ‘N Learn event was September’s event regarding Alzheimer’s. This was the last chance students had to attend until next semester.

“There are Lunch N Learns for students every other month,” Mitchell said. “The next one will be Feb. 26, 2018 at noon held in the GC 218-219.”

Rawson has been involved with other Lunch ‘N Learn events at OBU, and has many years of experience in medicine.

“I have worked with Lindsay Mitchell in the past at other events and I have presented to the faculty and staff here at OBU on a couple of other lunch n learns,” Rawson said. “I have over 20 years in the medical field with billing and collections, surgical coordinator, and medical office coordinator for multiple PT offices in the OKC metro area. I have worked for Relax The Back for 6 years and I am a certified ergonomic assessment specialist.”

Mitchell said that Rawson has been involved with teaching the OBU community different health topics for a year.

“I actually found Roynell through extensive research on different health topics that I could bring to the OBU community,” Mitchell said. “She currently works up in OKC at Relax the Back. She first started doing the Lunch N Learns in the Fall of 2016.”

Students interested in attending just need to RSVP with Lindsay Mitchell at




IBC Shawnee celebrates 100 years

Anna Dellinger, Features Editor

Three church campus locations, thousands of members and 100 years later, Immanuel Baptist Church of Shawnee still stands as a testimony of God’s faithfulness.

IBC will be celebrating its 100 year anniversary as a church with three special services this Nov. 18 and 19.

Associate Pastor Mark Wright has served at IBC for 19 years – he served as music minister starting in 1998 and continued for 10 years until he transitioned to the position of associate pastor in 2009.

“I look back and see how God has worked through all the years that I’ve been here,” Wright said. “[IBC is] just a great church [and] I love it. It’s the longest place I’ve ever served and I’m grateful to have been a part of what’s going on here at Immanuel.”

It is no simple task for a church to thrive for 100 years, and Senior Pastor Dr. Todd Fisher has pastored IBC for the last 14 years.

“One of the most encouraging things is that for a hundred years, God has seen this church through a lot of thick and thin, a lot of things that have gone on in the world, things that have happened in the church that were great and some that weren’t so great,” Fisher said.

Not every church meets such a milestone, but the leaders at IBC can’t pinpoint exactly what makes this church so long-lasting.

“I don’t really know that we’ve done anything different,” Fisher said.

“I would like to believe that Immanuel’s health and success – however, you want to define that – has been because we’ve been faithful to the word of God and faithful to the mission of sharing the Gospel and wanting to reach people. Now we haven’t always done that perfectly by any means, but I think that we are here and we’re in the position that we’re in and the strength and the health of our church because of our faithfulness to the Word.”

Wright said that IBC focuses on many aspects in the church and not one big special thing.

“I think that’s probably the one thing that’s helped us maintain consistency through all the years, to help people to be able to serve the Lord,” he said.

“Whatever their gifts and talents and whatever they feel God has led them to, they can come here and get plugged in and I think that makes us, if we are unique, I guess that’s probably what it is. We’re trying to be all things to all people and that doesn’t always work out, but as best as we can we try to make that happen.”

IBC also takes care to focus on more than the Shawnee community. The church has held mission trips in places across the country, such as Colorado, Arizona and South Dakota, and also around the world, such as in Peru.

“Our missions emphasis here [is] a very important part of our church, kind of the DNA of our church,” Fisher said.


IBC Pic 1
Courtsey Photo / The Bison


“We’ve got a lot of mission partnerships all over the world and we’ve been blessed to have a number of people that were in our church leave our church and go serve in the IMB in different places around the world. Wherever they have gone out, we’ve tried to partner with them and go out. Missions is a very important thing for us and it gives people a great opportunity to get involved in missions as well.”

For Wright, the missions-minded focus of the church is the main reason he has continued to serve at IBC for so long.

“I hope we continue with the same kind of focus toward missions and reaching people, whether it be in this location or some other location.”

A brief church history

In 1917, members of Shawnee First Baptist Church had a dream to plant another church in order to reach more people with the Gospel and to establish a mission church on the east side of Shawnee.

Sept. 16, 1917, on the corner of 10th and Draper Street, 77 people met to form the Draper Street Baptist Church. Two years later, the church had continued to grow and voted to expand facilities, and only one year after that, a second expansion was necessary because of the increasing size of the congregation.

They realized in 1927 that they needed a new building, because each Sunday service, about 600 people crammed into a church that would only fit 300. In 1928, the church purchased a property on Main Street and begin building.

Construction continued until 1929 when the Great Depression hit, and several members of the church put a second mortgage on their home to complete construction. 

Despite the hardships of the Depression, the church construction was completed in 1929 and renamed as Immanuel Baptist Church on February 6 of the same year.

The church continued to thrive throughout the Great Depression and WWII. The growth of IBC was constant – so much so that they even had to turn people away because they would not fit inside the church building.

A decision was made to move from Main Street after so many years, from the green carpet and roof with leaks, to a new campus with a new building. They needed to raise $170, 000 and exceeded it in one day, reaching $193,000 in order to purchase the land for the new building. It was built in phases to encourage good stewardship and to keep the focus on the people of the church instead of the building.

The first Sunday in the new building was March 30, 2008. In 2009 came the decision to begin a third worship service because of such high attendance. Now, four services are held each Sunday to accommodate large the population of the church.

“It’s not about the building, it’s not about the fact that we’re in this location,” Wright said. It’s about [continuing] the same kind of focus of encouraging people and putting our emphasis on transformation of lives.”

As a marker of 100 years, Dr. John Nichols, a former OBU professor, has written a book: “Immanuel Baptist Church 100 Year History.”

100 Year Celebration Services

IBC Pic 2
Courtesy photo / The Bison

At 6:00 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 18, current members and staff, former staff, former pastors, music ministers and past members will come from out of town that haven’t been back to Shawnee or Immanuel for years.


Held at the main campus of IBC (1451 E. 45th Street Shawnee OK, 74804), there will be a time to share stories from the past and to look at historical displays.

“They’re planning on being here and sharing, kind of like the old homecomings they used to have back in the days, where they used to sit around, sing [and] have dinner on the grounds,” Wright said.

“It’s going be fun – a great opportunity for people to reminisce, talk about the old times, and see folks they haven’t seen in years and worship together and celebrate a great day.”

The Sunday morning service, beginning at 9:30 a.m. Nov. 19, will be held in OBU’s Raley Chapel, in order to allow such a large gathering of people. Instead of IBC’s normal four services, there will be one combined service. 

There will be congregational singing together with worship band, choir, orchestra and acapella group “This Hope.” There will also be a showing of the 100 Year Celebration Documentary and a spoken message from Fisher as a celebration God’s work in the church.

Sunday night will be a night of worship together with the band “This Hope”. According to IBC’s website, attendees are invited to bring the whole family as they finish up a weekend of celebration with worship. For more information about the 100 Year Anniversary services, go to

For OBU students looking for a church home, the 100 year anniversary celebration is an opportunity to see the impact of one church on Shawnee.

“Some students come to OBU and kind of don’t get plugged in and get so busy in their studies, but the church life is all part of your growth as a Christian,” Wright said. “Just get plugged in wherever that is, and it’s great, we’d love to have them.”

Fisher is an OBU alumnus and has faced some of the same struggles as students today.

“I know it’s easy when you get away from home and you’ve got the pressures and demands of college on you and that schedule, it’s easy to sleep in on Sunday morning or to not get involved or plugged in,” Fisher said.

“We have a good relationship with OBU, and that’s what I would want students to know: that this is a place where they can get plugged in, find a place to serve and continue to grow while they’re [attending college].”

With 100 years behind them, Immanuel looks to the future of the church as well.

“Moving into the future, we’re [going to] have to… stay faithful to our mission, to the mission God’s given us in the Word, the Great Commission and keep teaching the Gospel and trying to adapt as the world changes without changing the message,” Fisher said.

OBU’s RAWC celebrates 10th anniversary

Payton Clark, News Editor

For 10 years, the Recreation and Wellness Center has been connecting students and promoting health on Bison Hill.

Oct. 28, the RAWC celebrated its tenth anniversary with a come and go celebration. From 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., the RAWC welcomed alumni, members, faculty and students to enjoy food and coffee provided by Elevated Grounds, along with tours of the facility. While the RAWC’s actual anniversary is in November, the celebration was moved to coincide with homecoming.

“We strive our best to be a place where students and employees feel comfortable to come as they are,” RAWC director Andrea Woolridge said. “We want everyone to feel like they belong and are part of our family. Our staff does a great job engaging members, whether it is an encouraging word or high five after a workout.”

The services and atmosphere provided by the RAWC have helped get students connected on campus since its start.

“I think it can be challenging for some students to get involved on campus and RAWC is a place where they can go and hang out, get plugged in a group class, intramural team etc. and feel like they are part of something,” Woolridge said. “They get to meet other students they wouldn’t have otherwise.”

Student and RAWC employee Amos Hopkins specifically applied to work at the RAWC for this connection to campus life.

“I wanted to be able to connect with people so that I may have more opportunities to spread God’s love and peace with the other students on campus,” Hopkins said.

Hopkins said that it serves as a great place to relieve stress and meet people, and is a place that students can experience all that college has to offer.

“It is an excellent place to take a short break and play racquetball, basketball or ping pong and to release the energy that has stored up in studying for long periods of time,” Hopkins said. “It has helped me in getting to know other students on campus and being able to make the RAWC a frequent spot in which we hang out.”

According to Wooldridge, the RAWC strives to keep students successful through physical and mental health.

“This is a place where students learn to use physical activity to cope with stress,” Woolridge said. “Being fit also is about getting the appropriate amount of sleep, and that is key to doing well in school. Our goals for success go beyond the classroom and are aimed at helping young people develop healthy habits for life.”

With its variety of equipment, services and uses, the RAWC has been instrumental in shaping student life on campus.

“The RAWC can be so beneficial in allowing students to exercise as much as they want whenever they want,” Hopkins said. “Whether it be a full body exercise, a run around the track or a simple ping pong game. Every person that walks into the RAWC can find something that fits their liking.”

With its cardio and strength equipment, basketball courts, racquetball and walking track, the RAWC has improved over the years to provide the community with many health opportunities.

“We continue to provide programming for all fitness levels, and each week we offer 26 fitness classes,” Woolridge said. “Lindsay Mitchell, our Wellness Coordinator offers classes to all varsity teams to help with cross training. We offer bootcamps, barre on the oval, yoga by Raley, Zumbathon throughout the semester for special programing. This year we started lunch and learns for students, [and] our intramurals is growing each semester.”

Woolridge said that the RAWC continues to improve their services to meet the needs of clients, and welcome ideas to meet their goals, helping the community for a healthier ten years and beyond.

“We are here to help members to meet their health and wellness goals, whether it is with programing for fitness classes, fitness evaluations or educational classes,” Woolridge said. “We want to grow and be a place where our members want to come back and bring their friends along to get healthy and have fun while they are doing it.”

Hopkins said that students should take advantage of the services and events provided by the RAWC.

“Every student should take the opportunity to go to the RAWC and spend quality time with friends and family,” Hopkins said. “Because of the different events that take place you can always find something you will enjoy and definitely want to come back and do again.”


Cargo Ranch celebrates with annual rodeo

Payton Clark, News Editor

Oct. 29, Cargo Ranch held its annual rodeo from 3 to 5 p.m. This year’s theme was “The Crazy Cargo Circus Rodeo,” and allowed kids to show their horsemanship skills to family and the community.

“Cargo has always had a rodeo so that the kids can show off the horsemanship skills they have learned to their parents, as well as showing their families the different fun activities they can do while at Cargo, such as playing games or making art projects,” senior and Cargo ranch volunteer Brooke Hurley said.

While the Cargo rodeo serves as an opportunity for the community, parents and volunteers to get involved, the kids are the main focus of the event.

“The kids who come out to Cargo often come because they don’t fit in at school or come from broken homes and the rodeo provides an opportunity for them to be a part of a show or production,” junior and Cargo volunteer Hannah Jordan said. “They get to be the star and their parents get to come see what they have learned the whole year.”

The Cargo Rodeo serves as an important reflection on the relationship between mentors and kids, and showing parents the fruits of Cargo’s labor.

“These kids often come from broken homes and having someone to invest in them can make a huge difference,” Jordan said. “They get to show their families Cargo and why it is special to them, [and] they also get to hang out with their mentor and do things that are special just for the rodeo. It is a great time to hang out with your kid and invest in their life.”

While the rodeo does offer students a chance to show off their skills to family, it also allows Cargo to show off its work to donors and the community of Shawnee.

“Another reason the rodeo is important is because it provides donors an opportunity to see what their money is going towards,” Hurley said. “And [it provides] community members an opportunity to come see what is going on in their community.”

According to Hurley, the annual rodeo not only benefits the Cargo community through support, but it offers a fun opportunity.

“This event is important to the kids and Cargo because it provides an opportunity for all of us to show the growth that has been happening on Cargo grounds,” Hurley said. “It is also just a super fun way to finish out fall sessions before we go into potluck season.”

Community members had a chance to participate through a cook off.

“This year community members [had] a chili cook off at the rodeo which helps provide food for the event as well as an opportunity to get involved,” Hurley said.

While interacting with horses is never without incident, Jordan said that each of the past rodeos have allowed Cargo to learn and improve the event, including when it is put on.

“The rodeo was originally in the summer so the parents could get a chance to see what their kids were learning at Cargo,” Jordan said. “It was also moved to the fall so that the college and OBU volunteers will be in town and can watch their children in the show. This also means we get to meet the kids’ families.

Cargo Ranch, located at 8895 Coker Rd, Shawnee OK, provides struggling kids with the opportunity to build relationships.

“Cargo Ranch is a non-profit youth ranch for kids who have changes, struggles, or obstacles, in their lives,” said. “We use horses and an outdoor environment to build relationships and open lines of communication with our youth.”

According to their website, the non-profit faith-based organization uses donations to make their program and services free for the community.

“Our program is free of charge to all of our families,” the website said. “We operate our ministry through private donations and grants from the community.”


Mya’s Weekly Insight: The cycle of life, how Christians should respond

MYA (3)Mya Hudgins, Faith Editor 

There are 195 countries, 7 continents, 7 seas, estimated about 6,909 languages, roughly 4,200 religions, and somewhere between 11,500 and 16,000 different people groups in this world. It’s crazy to think about how you and I are just one of billions of people on this earth. We won’t even know a fourth of the people in this world during our lifetime. According to the Ecology Global Network, there are four births and two death each second of the day. When this is added up, there are around 360,000 births per day and around 151,600 deaths per day.

Now that you understand just how small we are, you must also understand two things. First, God’s creation and second, our calling.

Isaiah 64:8 says, “Yet you, Lord, are our father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.”

In this verse, we are immediately shown that we are made in God’s image. We are hand-made, perfectly. Everyone looks different and has different personality but God chose these special things specifically for us. We were not made the same. Out of all the billions of people in this world, there is no one like you. Imagine a world full of you. The person sitting next to you looked and acted just like you do.

In my opinion, it would be very hard for me to believe in a God who didn’t even love us enough to make me different from the people I’m surrounded with. That in itself shows just how much Christ loves you.

This leads into the next point: our calling. As Christians, we are called to be missionaries. Whether that is using your calling down the street or traveling around the world. From the first paragraph, one can see just how many people are in this world. Many are dying every day and even more are coming into the world. As Christians, this should scare us more than anything. We are failing our calling by the day. When those people die in one day, what are the chances all of them are Christians? What are the chances that they all will go to heaven?  What are the chances they have even heard the Gospel? It is time to wake up and face the facts. No, we “can’t wait until the time is right” or “share the Gospel another time just not right now.”

I am just as guilty when it comes to being scared and afraid to go share with someone, but that’s not an excuse for someone’s eternal life to be hell. This world is all about life and death. It’s a never-ending cycle.  We don’t know who is going to die next, but take a step of faith and trust that Christ will give you the words to say.

The opposite of death is birth.

Every day, new humans are brought into this world. Yes, they are too young to understand the Gospel, (give them a couple days and then they might understand) but this is where being a godly example comes into play. Not every child has a chance of growing up in a Christian home, but there should be people out in the world that can lead by the example that Christ has given us.

1 Timothy 4:12 says, “let no one despise you because you are a youth, but set the believers an example in your speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity.”

If you get the opportunity to be an example and mentor to a student or child, don’t let yourself pass it up. You never know what God will teach them but also teach you. He has a mysterious way of working in people’s lives, even if they think they are helping someone else.

If every believer takes a stand and is determined to share the gospel every day, whether that’s showing love, sharing your testimony or just helping someone understand what and who Jesus Christ is, maybe the number of people who are dying unsaved will decrease.  His love for us is never ending and unconditional. Be strong and remember that we may not get appreciation here on earth, but Heaven is where we will hear the words “good job my good and faithful servant.”

Romans 15:13 says, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”


John Piper’s testimony discusses interracial relations 

Jonathan Soder, Assistant Faith Editor

Though produced in 2011, John Piper’s video testimony regarding his personal battle against racism still offers insights to families seeking to address the topic from a Christian worldview amidst today’s political and social atmosphere. 

“One of the great sorrows of my life, and one of the reasons I love the gospel of Jesus so much is because I grew up in this home as a full-blooded racist,” Piper said in the video’s opening statement. 

Piper grew up in Greenville, South Carolina in the 1950s and 60s during the height of Martin Luther King Jr.’s peaceful protests. In 1952, the Supreme Court legally ended segregation in public schools through the landmark case Brown v. Board of Education, but the decision was not administered with “all deliberate speed” by many states. 

“Separation was as deep as you could imagine, and it was demeaningly deep,” Piper said. “I grew up in it with approval. I didn’t look upon it with indignation. I looked upon it as the way that things should be, in spite of the fact that I grew up in a Christian home.” 

Though racists, Piper recalls reminiscently that his family had consistent interactions with at least one black American woman, their maid Lucy. 

“We all loved Lucy, but it was relationally so dysfunctional,” Piper said. “She was just a presence of another kind.” 

The inconsistencies of racism in a Christian home showed themselves blatantly to Piper through the institution of marriage. The first occurrence he relates occurred in 1962 on his sister’s wedding day. Acting as an usher, Piper was responsible for seating Lucy and her family when they arrived. 

“There weren’t any blacks at this church, and in fact, there was a tacit assumption, and later an explicit statement, that blacks wouldn’t be welcome,” Piper said. 

Piper was instructed to lead Lucy and her family to the balcony seating, but his mother, Ruth, stepped in and led them by the arm into the sanctuary. 

“Into my life were flowing these contradictory impulses,” Piper said. “I saw my mother intervening against a system at that point which was going to further demean Lucy and her family, and so that was sinking down in.” 

It was after this encounter that Piper consciously recognized what hampered his belief in racial integration. 

“The thought came to me, and I forget where it came from, or who sowed it in my mind, but it was, ‘Red birds mate with red birds, and blue birds mate with blue birds, so why can’t blacks marry their own and whites marry their own?” Piper said. “‘Why is there this pressure to be together?’ Because in those days, whether people articulated it or not, and it’s true today as well in many places, togetherness meant, ‘Your kids are going to start liking each other, and one of them is going to fall in love with the other, and they’re going to marry’. That was the deepest justification in my sinful mind for all kinds of segregation.” 

While at the 1967 Urbana Missions Conference during his time as a student at Wheaton College, Piper’s view of marriage had changed, and he accepted his earlier realization that at the root of racial tension were marriage and the family. 

“They actually did a Q and A for 9,000 students in the audience, and somebody stood up and said, ‘Now, you were a missionary in Pakistan. What if your daughter had fallen in love with a Pakistani? How would you feel about her marrying a Pakistani?’ [Warren Webster] said, “Better a Pakistani Christian than a rich, white, American banker.’ And I thought at the moment, ‘That is exactly the right answer’.” 

From Wheaton, Piper and his wife, Noël, moved to California so he could attend Fuller Theological Seminary. While there, he was given the chance to explore his convictions regarding race and marriage further in an end-of-term essay. 

“I concluded God does not, in his family, disapprove of interracial marriage. In fact, I argued, and I’ve preached on it since then, I think God blesses interracial marriage,” Piper said. “I severed the root of that old issue of interracial marriage which felt, as a teenager, like it was at the bottom of so much segregation.” 

Following his time at Fuller, Piper would vividly experience the life of an outsider while he earned a PhD in Munich, Germany in two ways. He struggled heavily with not speaking the language and also visited the Nazi camp Dachau. In 1980, after his graduate studies were completed, Piper felt God calling him to the pastorate.  

“The first church to contact me was Bethlehem Baptist Church in downtown Minneapolis,” Piper said. “I’d never been there. I didn’t know where it was, even though it was just eight miles from where I lived in New Brighton. I got in my car and I said, ‘I’m going to go see where this church is so that I can wonder if I should even consider going there.” 

Upon visiting for the first time, Piper found the church to be situated in an area marked by diversity. 

“To the west was the high rise, the ritzy downtown hotels and business people, and to the north was kind of a light industrial Valspar paint company. To the east was the university, 50,000 college students just across the highway, and to the south, Phillip’s neighborhood, Elliot Park neighborhood – the poorest neighborhoods in the city. And I thought, ‘This is gold’.” 

Piper dove in, deciding that if he was to serve there, he would also settle his family there amongst the ethnic and racial diversity which had become a cornerstone of his mission. In 1996, Piper’s family dynamic reached a culmination in his battle against racism; he and Ruth adopted a newborn black girl named Talitha. 

“God did a remarkable work in us,” Piper said. “He taught me this, ‘If you act consistently with your convictions about interracial marriage and the nobility and beauty of diversity, this choice would commit you to this issue till you’re dead.’ And that swung it for me, those three things: love for my wife, love for this little girl, and love for the cause – the cause of Christ-exalting racial harmony and racial diversity.”