web analytics

Archive | Church Connection

Real Men – Part 3

First-Baptist-church-currenPastor Jim Howard

First Baptist Church

233 S. Main, Cedar Springs


“What is a real man? By the standards of today, a real man is someone who doesn’t exist except in the imaginations of those in Hollywood and the marketing industry. Today, we deal with Becoming Men of God (1 Timothy 4:6-8; 2 Peter 1:5-7). You will discover that by embracing this final step, the first two will follow.

Paul’s words to Timothy are very appropriate for what we need in our lives today. The first thing to note is that we should be men who are given to a life of instruction. “In pointing out these things to the brethren, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which you have been following”  (1 Tim. 4:6, NAS). Paul says we ought to teach (“pointing out”) the Word, be “nourished” by the Word and be obedient (“follow”) to the Word. Teaching a subject demands that one know the subject. Try teaching a subject, you will find yourself studying to stay ahead of the students. The word “nourished” would be better translated “trained” which requires little explanation.

Becoming men of God also means that we should be given to a life of exercise. “Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come” (1 Timothy 4:7-8, ESV). First Paul tells us where NOT to spend our time. There is much in this world on which we waste time. Not the least of which are the fanciful tales that some people spin! I stand in absolute amazement at what people will believe today without checking the facts. We are being programmed to accept at face value what we are told. Never mind that it’s not true. There is one thing about the Word of God that you can hang your hat on, it can stand the test of scrutiny. Truth will be truth no matter what the circumstances. Truth doesn’t change!

Finally, men of God are given to a life of Godliness! “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love” (2 Peter 1:5-7, NKJV). This is an interesting verb here in that it reflects a command with the idea that we are to aggressively, passionately pursue the virtues listed.

Becoming a real man essentially boils down to three things: having a clean heart (a relationship with Jesus Christ); having clean hands (keeping short accounts with God); and having a clean mind (aggressively pursuing a passion for godliness). Remember Paul’s words to Timothy, “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine (that which is right), for reproof (that which isn’t right), for correction (how to get right), for instruction in righteousness (how to stay right), that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17, NKJV).

Posted in From the PulpitComments (0)

Hush your mouth

By Ronnie McBrayer

By Ronnie McBrayer

From all reports, Juergen Peters was a bright, sweet young man. But he was often troubled, depressed, and dark. After an intense dispute at work one day he turned unusually dismal, even for him. He walked off his job and climbed to the top of a water tower with every intention of jumping to his death. As authorities rushed to the scene, a crowd of onlookers also gathered.

At some point Juergen, thankfully, was convinced to change course. He carefully began climbing to the ground. The crowd, deprived of a sensational conclusion, did not take its disappointment lying down. Someone yelled to the boy, “Jump, you coward!”

As Peters descended the tower more and more spectators began to jeer and deride him. He hesitated, looked down at the crowd, and then climbed back up. When he reached the top again, he moved out on the ledge and flung himself off.

If Juergen Peters had made it safely to the ground that day, I don’t know if he would have received the mental health intervention he so badly needed. But I do know this: The cause of death may have read “suicide,” but those in the crowd could have been detained as accomplices to the crime.

This is a tragic, dramatic story, but a necessary one: We are destroying one another with our words as hateful, spiteful rhetoric spills from all corners of society. Road rage. Bullying at school. Toxic hate speech. Political opponents locked in verbal assault. Hordes of tanked-up adults coming to blows at a Little League game. Online “comments” that are nothing but anonymous, poisonous vitriol lobbed like grenades into a crowd. The level of hostility and lack of civility in our country is nothing but destructive.

Ancient wisdom recognizes and identifies the root of this problem: “A tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And the tongue is a flame of fire,” the Jewish sage wrote. All of us have this potential – to strike out with hellish words that act like kindling for a raging fire.

The children’s rhyme we all learned before kindergarten is wrong: “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” That’s a boldface lie. Words hurt. They crush, destroy, and yes, even kill. But they are not just killing others. We are burning our whole world to the ground. May God give us the grace to keep our mouths shut.

Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, blogger, pastor, and author of multiple books. Visit his website at www.ronniemcbrayer.net and listen to his talks by clicking on his YouTube channel.

Posted in Keeping the FaithComments (0)

Thank You

I would like to thank each and every one who attended or sent cards to my 80th Birthday Party. It was awesome! Also, thank you to my children who put the party on.

Leona Wainright

Posted in Thank YouComments (0)

Thank You

The family of Marjorie Bailey would like to thank our community for the cards, flowers and acts of kindness shown to us during our difficult time. Hospice for their tender and dedicated attention to Mom. Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home for helping us navigate final plans and the First Baptist Church for the wonderful luncheon. We appreciate all of you.

Posted in Thank YouComments (0)


10 C obit TomsonDouglas Dean Tomson, age 61, passed away unexpectedly at his home on Monday, March 2, 2015. He served his country during Vietnam in the U.S.Navy for 1972 until 1976. He was preceded in death by his father, Carl D; brothers, Martin and Randy. He will be lovingly remembered by his daughter, Crystal Tomson and Jason Grindle; son, Joseph Burns; his mother, Donna Mae Tomson; Crystal’s Mother, Connie Burns; sister in law, Rebecca and Steve Bradley; several cousins, nieces, and nephews; life long friend, Jerry Clock. As Douglas had wished, cremation has taken place. A memorial gathering will take place at the Sparta Moose Lodge on Saturday, March 14, 2:00 P.M. until 6:00 P.M. Those who wish may make memorial contributions to The Clock Children’s Hunting Camp.

Arrangements by Hessel Cheslek Funeral Home, Sparta, www.hesselcheslek.com

Posted in ObituaryComments (0)

Charlotte Ann Rogalewski

Rogalewski, Charlotte OBITMrs. Charlotte Ann Rogalewski of Sand Lake, Michigan, age 96, passed away in the comfort of her home and into the arms of her Lord and Savior on the evening of Saturday, March 7, 2015. She was born to John and Margaret (Allen) Smith, in their home in Hinton Township, Michigan on Monday, October 8, 1918, and had been a life-long resident of the area. Charlotte lived a long, joy-filled life, always surrounding herself with loving family and friends. She was a remarkable woman with many talents and a strong undying faith and love toward her family and her Lord. Charlotte and her husband John were business owners, operating several small businesses in the Cedar Springs area, most notably the Kent Theater on Main Street, which was a great joy for their children. They were also very instrumental in making the Cedar Springs Museum and Historical Society what it is today. Charlotte even held a seat in Solon Township as Treasurer for several years. Charlotte showed her love for life in many ways and shared that love with everyone she knew. She was artistically inclined and incredibly talented as a prolific quilter and oil painter. She was also quite a master chef, always sharing with family and friends, her love of homemade soups and bread. Charlotte loved to garden as well, growing the most beautiful flowers with her exceptional green thumb. She could hardly wait every year for the snow to leave, so she could get her hands in the dirt. She was truly altruistic, always caring and giving to others. Charlotte was a loving and devoted wife, wonderful mother, dear friend and sister, and proud grandmother; the best anyone could ever ask for. She will be deeply missed and fondly remembered by all those who knew her. Charlotte is survived by her beloved children, Dennis (Mary Ann) Rogalewski, John (Kathryn) Rogalewski, Dorothy Koop, and Nancy (Gordon) Rogalewski-May; thirteen grandchildren; twelve great-grandchildren; sister Dorothy Briggs; brother Edward (Laura) Smith; sister-in-law Margaret Smith; and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband John D. Rogalewski; infant daughter Collette E. Rogalewski; and granddaughter Deborah Rogalewski. There will be a time of visitation from 2:00 until 4:00 p.m. and from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 10, 2015, at Pederson Funeral Home, 127 N. Monroe Street NE, Rockford, MI 49341. The funeral service for Charlotte will be celebrated at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, March 11, 2015, at Pederson Funeral Home. Chaplain Vern Bareman will be officiating. There will also be a one hour visitation prior to the service. Those wishing to offer expressions of sympathy are encouraged to make a memorial contribution in memory of Charlotte to the Cedar Springs Museum and Historical Society, P.O. Box 296, Cedar Springs, MI 49319-0296.
Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home

Posted in ObituaryComments (0)



C-obit-Cadwell-webSusan W. Cadwell, 64 of Sand Lake, died Tuesday, March 3, 2015 at her home. Susan was born September 17, 1950 in Sparta, Michigan, the daughter of Lester and Doris (Line) Cadwell. She had worked at Trini’s in Sparta as a waitress. She was a good mother and sister and had a great love for her grandchildren. Surviving are her son, Jason (Pamela) Cadwell; seven grandchildren and three great grandchildren; sister, Julie (Ray) Bush. She was preceded in death by her daughter, Amy and a sister, Cher Whitesell. A memorial visitation and luncheon will be held Saturday, March 7 from 1-3 p.m. at Cedar Creek Community Church, 2969 14 Mile Road in Sparta.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs.

Posted in ObituaryComments (0)



Mrs. Maxine Louise Powell of Cedar Springs, Michigan, age 90, passed away in the comfort of her home and into the arms of her Lord and Savior on Sunday, March 1, 2015. She was born to Howard and Emma (Fisk) Kilts in Solon Township, on Sunday, November 16, 1924 and had been a life-long resident of the area. As a homemaker, the most honorable profession, Maxine raised her family traditionally. She always enjoyed being near her family, providing and caring for them. Her wonderful homemade desserts, would surely keep them close. In her free time, she enjoyed reading country cooking and decorating magazines and was a dedicated Detroit Tigers fan. Maxine was a loving and devoted wife, wonderful mother, and the best grandmother anyone could ask for. Her faith was strong as well and important to her. She was a long-time member of Cedar Creek Church. Maxine is survived by her wonderful and beloved husband of sixty-nine years, Russell Powell; loving children Steve (Cindy) Powell, Linda (Chuck) Minker, Christine (Ross) Robinson, James (Cindy) Powell, David (Vicki) Powell, and Michael Powell; twenty-two grandchildren; twenty-five great grandchildren; five great-great grandchildren; brother Walter Kilts; sister Barbara Jean Wainright; sister-in-laws Betty and Lois Kilts; and numerous nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her parents; grandchildren Jamie and Jacob Powell; brothers Lavern and Norm Kilts; brother-in-law Jack Wainright; and sister-in-law Dorothy Kilts. A time of visitation was held from 2:00 until 4:00 p.m. and from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, March 3, 2015, at Pederson Funeral Home, 127 N. Monroe Street NE, Rockford, MI 49341. The funeral service for Maxine was celebrated at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 4, 2015, at Pederson Funeral Home. Rev. Richard Nichols will be officiating. Interment will be at Algoma Township Cemetery.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home


Posted in ObituaryComments (0)



Mrs. Leone Marie Davis of Cedar Springs, Michigan, age 89, passed away into the arms of her Lord and Savior on Sunday, March 1, 2015. She was born to Frank and Auril (Wells) Middleton on Friday, August 21, 1925 in Grant, Michigan and had been a life-long resident of the West Michigan area. During her childhood, she was raised on several farms in the Grant, Bailey, Casnovia, and Kent City areas. This sustainable lifestyle served as a blessing for a child growing up during the Depression era. As a child she always found herself picking string beans and cucumbers. Leone attended the Free Methodist Church. She loved to attend Sunday school and prepared funeral lunches. In addition to being a homemaker, Leone also worked for Wolverine Worldwide for 21 years and was a cook and prep cook at Kelly’s Restaurant where she was well known for her croutons. Leone loved many things in life, such as square dancing since she was a young girl, and going to the Montcalm County 4-H Fair in Greenville. However, the love she had for her family and the faith she had in her Lord, was truly immeasurable. She was a loving and devoted wife, wonderful mother and mother-in-law, and the best grandmother anyone could ask for. She will be sadly missed and fondly remembered by family, friends, and all those who knew her. Leone is survived by her loving children Skip (Cindy) Davis and Sharon DeVries; five grandchildren; eleven great grandchildren; one great-great grandchild; siblings Barth Middleton, Francis “Butch” (Glenda) Middleton, Opal Waller, Lucille Middleton; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband Charles Davis in 1992; son-in-law, Don DeVries; and siblings Vera Armstrong, Agnes Feikema, Cleo Middleton, and Clair Middleton. Visitation was held on Tuesday, March 3, 2015, and funeral service for Leone was celebrated at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, March 4, 2015, at Pederson Funeral Home. Interment will be in Courtland Township Cemetery. Those wishing to offer expressions of sympathy are encouraged to make a memorial contribution to Tri-County Country 4-H Club, 16161 Wickert Avenue, Sand Lake, MI 49343.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home


Posted in ObituaryComments (0)


50th Anniversary




Don and Nancy (McAnally) Hanna of Cedar Springs were High School Sweethearts, both graduated from Cedar Springs. The will celebrate 50 years of marriage on March 5th, 2015. the couple was married at Kent City Baptist Church in 1965. The Hannas are proud parents of Shelli and Robert Hall and Sandra and Alan Balcam. Their grandchildren are, Nichole and Fiancé Joshua Black, Joshua Hall, Austin and Alyssa Balcam. The family will be celebrating at a later date. Nancy was a stay at home mom and babysitter for children after school. Don retired from Knape and Vogt after 48 years in 2010.

Please wish our parents a Happy 50th Anniversary when you see them.

Posted in AnniversaryComments (0)