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Tag Archive | "solon center wesleyan church"

Hometown Happenings


Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.

Good Friday Walk and Remember 

Mar. 25: Walk to each of the Sand Lake Village Churches and listen to the thoughts of characters that experienced the crucifixion first hand. Friday, March 25th from noon to 1:30 pm. Our walk begins at Resurrection Lutheran Church (just south of town on Northland Dr.), with stops at the Full Gospel Church, Downtown Pavilion, Mary Queen of Apostles, and the United Methodist Church. Transportation will be provided back to the Lutheran Church. Children and families are encouraged to join us. #10-12p

Easter Egg-Stravaganza

Mar. 26: An Easter Egg-Stravaganza, a celebration for children will be held on Saturday, March 26th from 1 to 2:30 pm at the Solon Center Wesleyan Church. All children 10 years and under are invited to attend. There’ll be games, an Easter Egg hunt, and a special Easter presentation. Two bicycles will be given away as grand prizes! For more information go to: scwchurch.com or call the church office  at 616-696-3229. The church is located at 15671 Algoma Ave., just north of 19 Mile Rd. All welcome! #11,12p

Praise the Lord at Cowboy Church

Mar. 27: 2nd Chance will be having Cowboy Church on Sunday, March 27th at 6 pm. It will be at 2nd Chance School at 810 – 17 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs (corner of 17 Mile and Olin Lakes Rd). The message will be shared by Billi Brandt who has an amazing testimony to share. Music will be shared by Gitchel family singing and playing traditional gospel music. Invite your family and friends. Cowboy Church will be every 2nd and 4th Sunday of the month. Each service will have different people sharing God’s word and music. If you have questions, call 616-293-2150. See you there! #12

Register Now For Free Hunter Education

Apr. 5: To register for firearm Hunter Safety Classes  at the Red Flannel Rod & Gun Club, call Jim Pope at 231-834-5545 after 6 pm. Classes at the Club, 7463 18 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs, will be Tuesday, April 5th, from 6-9 pm,  Thursday, April 7th, from 6-9pm,  Saturday, April 9th, from 8 am-4 pm, and Tuesday, April 12th from 6-9 pm. Class size limited to 40 students. #12,13p

Help Promote Literacy

Apr. 14: The Literacy Center of West Michigan has scheduled and information session on Thursday April 14th, for prospective volunteer tutors. This session is held at 6 pm and lasts one hour. It allows persons interested in becoming volunteer tutors to find out more about the Center and its literacy programs. At the end of the session there will be an opportunity to sign up for tutor training. By training people to be tutors, the Center can offer one-on-one reading help to adults asking for assistance in reading or English as a Second Language (ESL). You do not need to speak another language to tutor ESL. The Center is located at 1120 Monroe Ave., NW, Suite 240, Grand Rapids. Please call 616-459-5151 (ext. 10) or email us at info@literacycenterwm.org to register. #12

Community Night

Apr. 21: Cedar Springs Community Night is April 21st and registration is underway. The deadline for registration is March 25th. Forms are online at www.csaparksandrec.com or you can call 616-696-7320. #12

CS Rotary Club Cow Plop

May 7: The Cedar Springs Rotary Club is hosting their annual Cow Plop on Saturday, May 7th from 9 am to 12 pm, next to White Creek Lumber, 13861 White Creek. Tickets are $5.00 each. Prizes: $1,000, $350, or $150, depending on where the cow plops. See any Rotarian for Tickets and more information. #12

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Hometown Happenings


Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.

Fish Fry

Mar. 18: Courtland-Oakfield United Methodist Church, 10295 Myers Lake Ave., is hosting a Fish Fry on Friday, March 18th from 4:30 to 7 pm. Battered fried fish, baked potato or fresh-cut French fries, cole slaw, coffee and punch, dessert. 3 pieces – $9, 2 pieces – $7, 1 piece – $5. Eat in or carry out. 616-866-4298. #10,11p

Annual En Gedi Auction

Mar. 18: Come Be Refreshed! Friday, March 18th with the High School cafeteria doors opening at 6 pm. This year’s event has many great items for you to choose from to include furniture, MSU football and basketball tickets, private golf session by MSU Coach Casey Lubahn, hotel stays, fine dining certificates, tools, hand-made dolls, private wild turkey and pheasant hunts, clothing, wood pellets, puzzles, and much more!!!! With a $10 entry donation you can enjoy delicious appetizers while you browse the items on the silent and live auction table. All funds earned on this event will be matched by CS Manufacturing. En Gedi is a Christ-centered non-profit organization providing a FREE after school youth center, special high school and community events with a focus on building family. Donations of services or products (all are appreciated are greatly needed. Contact Sue Wolfe at 696-2246 or SueQ@hughes.net for tickets or for donation pick-ups. #10,11p

Lions Club Pancake Breakfast

Mar. 19: The Cedar Springs Lions Club’s Pancake Breakfast will be held this Saturday on March 19th from 7 – 11 am at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church, on the corner of Main and Church. Adults $8 and Family $25. Pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns, juice, coffee. All you can eat. The next planned date is April 16th. Proceeds to assist sight conservation. #11

Mom2Mom Sale

Mar. 19: The Resurrection Lutheran Church, 180 S. Third St., Sand Lake is hosting a Mom2Mom sale on Saturday, March 19th from 9 am to 1 pm. For questions regarding the sale, please contact Nichole at 616-263-9662. #10,11p

Annual Church Garage Sale

Mar. 19: Rockford Reformed Church, 4890 – 11 Mile Rd., Rockford, will be hosting their Annual Church Garage Sale on Saturday, March 19th from 9 am to 3 pm. Proceeds will go towards the youth ministries summer trips. For more information, call Deb Coon at 616-866-4829. #11p

Roast Beef Dinner

Mar. 20: The Rockford American Legion Post 102 on the corner of Northland Dr. and Rockford Park Dr. (330 Rockford Park Dr.), will be hosting a roast beef dinner on Sunday March 20th and every 3rd Sunday of each month. Open to the public. We will be serving roast beef, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, green beans, coleslaw, rolls, dessert, coffee and punch. Reasonably priced at $9 for adults, kids age 4 to 12 for $7 and under 4 years are free. Serving from 11am to 3 pm. See ya there and bring the family! #10,11p

Dinner at the Legion

Mar. 21: American Legion, 80 S. Main St. Cedar Springs, is hosting a roast beef and onion dinner on Monday, March 21st, from 5 – 7 pm. Included will be mashed potatoes, veggies, roll, drink and dessert. The cost is $9 for adults, children (15 and younger) $4.00. Come and enjoy home cooking. Take out is available. 616-696-9160.  #11p

Good Friday Walk and Remember 

Mar. 25: Walk to each of the Sand Lake Village Churches and listen to the thoughts of characters that experienced the crucifixion first hand. Friday, March 25th from noon to 1:30 pm. Our walk begins at Resurrection Lutheran Church (just south of town on Northland Dr.), with stops at the Full Gospel Church, Downtown Pavilion, Mary Queen of Apostles, and the United Methodist Church. Transportation will be provided back to the Lutheran Church. Children and families are encouraged to join us. #10-12p

Easter Egg-Stravaganza

Mar. 26: An Easter Egg-Stravaganza, a celebration for children will be held on Saturday, March 26th from 1 to 2:30 pm at the Solon Center Wesleyan Church. All children 10 years and under are invited to attend. There’ll be games, an Easter Egg hunt, and a special Easter presentation. Two bicycles will be given away as grand prizes! For more information go to: scwchurch.com or call the church office  at 616-696-3229. The church is located at 15671 Algoma Ave., just north of 19 Mile Rd. All welcome! #11,12p

Learn to Play the Ukulele

Mar. 30: During this hour and a half workshop you will learn the basics of playing the Ukulele. This fun and relaxed program will teach you the basic chords, rhythm and strumming you’ll need to play a few songs by the end of the workshop. Our instructor, Dean Wiers-Windemuller of Southtown Guitar will lead the hands-on workshop. Players of all levels are welcome and no prior experience is necessary. Pre-registration is required. For teens grades 6-12. Wednesday, March 30th at 3:30 pm at the Nelson Township/Sand Lake KDL Branch, 88 Eighth St., 616-636-4251. #11

HCNC’s Spring Break Day Camp

Apr. 4: Spring Break 2016 is right around the corner! Howard Christensen Nature Center’s Spring Day Camp begins on April 4th and runs the entire week. Crafts, exploring the property, and getting up close  and personal with animals only begins to scratch the surface of this fun filled week! Registration is now open. HCNC is located at 16160 Red Pine Dr., Kent City, 616-675-3158. www.howardchristiansen.org. #11

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ESTHER M. HEISS


EPSON scanner image

Esther M. Heiss, 87, of Cedar Springs, died Monday, January 25, 2016 at her home. Mrs. Heiss was born March 3, 1928 in Sand Lake, Michigan the daughter of Lee and Leona (Bremmer) Parker. She was a homemaker and along with her husband worked the farm and logging. She enjoyed reading, gardening and her flowers. She was a lifelong attender of the Solon Center Wesleyan Church. She loved her family and was a treasure for her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Surviving are her children, Tracy Hawley, Trudy (Jerold) Bryant, Terry Leversay, Randy (Sandy) Heiss, Roy (Alicia) Heiss; 13 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; 1 great-great-grandson; several step grandchildren and great-grandchildren; brothers, Max Parker, Ken (Sue) Parker; sisters, Wanda Morris, Doris Martin, Edith (Dale) Johnson, Lois (Curt) Phillips; brother-in-law, David Newton; sister-in-law, Elaine Pyard; many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her husband, Ray in 2005; son-in-law, Randy Leversay; great grandson, David Schlinz; brothers, L. B., Wyman, and Ronald “Barney” Parker; sisters, Kathleen Parker and Donna Newton. The family will greet friends Thursday from 2-4 and 6-8 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs where the service will be held Friday 11:00 am. Chaplain Daniel Pflug officiating. Interment Crandall Cemetery, Ensley Township. Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home

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Hometown Happenings


Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.

Lions Club Pancake Breakfast

Jan. 16: The Cedar Springs Lions Club’s Pancake Breakfast will be held this Saturday on January 16th from 7 – 11 am at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church, on the corner of Main and Church. Adults $8 and Family $25. Pancakes, eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns, juice, coffee. All you can eat. Other planned dates are February 20th, March 19th and April 16th. Proceeds to assist sight conservation. #2

Roast Beef Dinner

Jan. 17: The Rockford American Legion Post 102 on the corner of Northland Dr. and Rockford Park Dr. (330 Rockford Park Dr.), will be hosting a roast beef dinner on Sunday, January 17th and every 3rd Sunday of each month. Open to the public. We will be serving roast beef, mashed potatoes, gravy, corn, green beans, coleslaw, rolls, desert, coffee and punch. Reasonably priced at $9 for adults, kids age 4 to 12 for $7 and under 4 years are free. Serving from 11am to 3 pm. See ya there and bring the family! #1,2p

TOPS weight loss support group

Jan. 19: Take off pounds sensibly (TOPS), a non-profit weight loss support group for men and women, meets every Tuesday at the Resurrection Lutheran Church in Sand Lake. Your first visit is free so come check out what TOPS can do to help you reach your weigh loss goals! Weigh-ins 8:15-9am, meeting starts at 9:15am. In case of inclement weather, meetings are cancelled if Tri-County or Cedar Springs schools are closed. Call Barb at 696-8049 for more information. #1

Michigan Blood Drive:

Jan. 19: Michigan Blood Drive: Tuesday, January 19th at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church, 12:30 pm- 7:00 pm. Make a New Year’s Resolution: Donate every 2 months for 2016. You would have the potential to help 18 people! #2

Community Supported Agriculture

Jan. 19: Learn how you can fill your table with fresh, local, organic produce that’s good for the body and good for the earth. Tuesday, January 19th at 7 pm at Courtland-Oakfield UMC, 10295 Myers Lake, NE. #2

KDL Lab: Mad Scientist

Jan. 23: Pull on a lob coat and get ready to think like a mad scientist. Create a plush Franken-Beanie creature to take home, create slimy bugs in the Creepy Crawlers Oven and plan your next mad scientist creation with a Franken-creature collage! For ages 6 and older. Saturday, January 23rd at 10:30 am. Nelson Township/Sand Lake KDL Branch, 88 Eighth St. 616-636-4251. #2

Women’s Day Retreat

Feb. 6: Need to get away from it all? A day away just for women will be held at the beautiful Loon’s Nest Banquet Center at Whitefish Lake on Saturday, February 6th from 9 am – 4 pm. Registration is at 8:30 am. The event called “G.R.O.W. – the Godly Rise of Women” is designed to encourage growth in women’s relationships, not only with God, but with spouses, family and personal friendships as well. Tickets are $35 which includes a delicious lunch, all day snacks and beverages, guest speaker Gail Ramesh the originator or the retreat ministry called Unveiled, and materials for special (hands on) breakout sessions. The day is sponsored by the Women’s Ministry of the Solon Center Wesleyan Church. Tickets can be purchased at online at: https://scwchurch.cloverdonations.com/grow-registration/ or call the church office at 616-696-3229. The Loon’s Nest is located at 2241 Bass Lake Rd., Pierson. All women welcome! #2,3p

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Hometown Happenings


Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.


Start your New Year with TOPS

Jan. 5: Keep your New Year’s resolutions with TOPS (Take off pounds sensibly). TOPS is a non-profit weight loss support group for men and women, meets every Tuesday at the Resurrection Lutheran Church in Sand Lake. Your first visit is free so come check out what TOPS can do to help you reach your weigh loss goals! Weigh-ins 8:15-9am, meeting starts at 9:15am. In case of inclement weather, meetings are cancelled if Tri-County or Cedar Springs schools are closed. Call Barb at 696-8049 for more information. #52

God’s Kitchen in Cedar Springs

Jan. 5,12,19,26: Join us for dinner every Tuesday. God’s Kitchen – Cedar Springs welcomes families from Northern Kent County and the surrounding area to a Tuesday Evening Meal. No charge – no registration required!  Served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm at the St. John Paul II Parish, 3110 – 17 Mile Rd., Cedar Springs. For more information, call the Church office at 616-696-3904. #52

P.A.T.H. For Diabetes Workshop

Jan. 7: Personal Action Toward Health (P.A.T.H.) for Diabetes is a six week workshop designed to provide skills and tools to help you improve your health and manage your symptoms. Thru PATH for Diabetes you will learn to deal with the challenges of not feeling well, effectively talk to healthcare providers and family members, increase your energy, stay independent, and set goals. This is a FREE class, held once a week for six weeks beginning January 7 from 9am-11:30am at Solon Center Wesleyan Church, 15671 Algoma Ave. Cedar Springs, MI 49319.  To register, or for questions please contact  Christi Demitz, MSU Extension, 616.632.7881, demitzch@anr.msu.edu. #51,52p

Ugly Sweater Cupcake Wars

Jan 13: Cupcake Wars are BACK! This time with a holiday twist. Teens are encourages to wear their ugliest (most unique) holiday sweater and decorate a holiday themed cupcake. Judges will give awards for the ugliest (most unique) sweater and cupcake decorating skills. Pre-registration is required and participant spots are limited. For teens grades 6 – 12. Wednesday, January 13th at 6:30 pm at the Nelson Township/Sand Lake KDL Branch, 88 Eighth St. 616-636-4251. #52

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Pastor Tom Holloway to say goodbye to Cedar Springs


 

Pastor Tom Holloway is known to some as the “rock & roll” preacher. He will be leaving at the end of the month to take over a church in South Carolina.

Pastor Tom Holloway is known to some as the “rock & roll” preacher. He will be leaving at the end of the month to take over a church in South Carolina.

The congregation of the Solon Center Wesleyan Church will bid their pastor, Rev. Tom Holloway, farewell at the end of the month. He and his family will be moving to South Carolina to take charge of another Wesleyan church in the North Myrtle Beach area.

Pastor Tom, with his wife Kim, daughter Taylor and sons Christian and Jackson came to Solon Center Wesleyan Church in 2007, when Pastor Tom was hired as a part time youth pastor and worship leader. Under his direction, the youth program flourished and the worship music became more contemporary in style. Each year he and the praise band would ride a float in the Red Flannel Parade, representing the church and playing their favorite songs. Over time, he fondly became known by some in the community as the rock & roll preacher.

When the opening became available in 2011, Pastor Tom became the lead pastor of the church. Since then the church has grown both numerically and spiritually under Pastor Tom’s guidance and loving care. His vision statement of  “Reaching Up, Reaching Out & Reaching In” has become a reality, as the church has worshipped freely, made its presence known in the community, and the spiritual lives of individuals have deepened in their love for God through his teaching.

Pastor Tom has been instrumental in the community on a personal level as well. Some years ago, he and fellow youth pastor C.J. Mauer had a vision to start a youth center in Cedar Springs. From their vision and efforts, En Gedi, meaning “a place to be refreshed,” became a reality and now provides students in 6th-12th grades a safe place to get away from the burdens of life and be re-charged and energized.  Pastor Tom acted as the first executive director for the center until becoming the lead pastor at the church. Pastor Craig Owens is now directing the center located at Red Hawk Elementary School, which meets after school Mondays through Thursdays.

Said Owens, “The En Gedi Youth Center is an amazing after-school program. I am sometimes given kudos for the work we do, but if our program is successful, it is because I stand on the shoulders of Tom Holloway. If it were not for his vision for this program, and his tireless effort to make it work, we wouldn’t have the life-changing program that we now have. We owe a huge debt to Pastor Tom’s vision for Cedar Springs.”

After this change Pastor Tom remained involved as a board member of En Gedi and continued to support the center through helping with fund raising efforts and Friday night 5th quarter events.

In addition, Pastor Tom has also worked over the past two years as an officer for the Community Building Development Team of Cedar Springs. The team is working to advance the construction of buildings and spaces where the greater Cedar Springs Community can gather for cultural, educational, recreational, commercial, and family/community events. Pastor Tom’s recent work primarily involved research regarding the design and construction of an amphitheater for the city.

CBDT president Kurt Mabie said, “Tom has a passion and love for this city.  He will be missed.”

He has also consistently been an active member of the Cedar Springs Ministerial Association, which meets monthly and organizes ecumenical gatherings such as the upcoming “UNITED” Community Worship Service which is planned for August 23 in Morley Park. Pastor Tom was always instrumental in leading the praise and worship portion of the service, organizing band members, vocalists, and equipment.

Brett DeGraaf, Vice Chairman of the board at Solon Center recently shared his thoughts. “Pastor Tom has truly been a blessing to Solon Center Wesleyan Church and the Cedar Springs community. Through his music and unique ministry style, he was able to grow our church family and build a spirit of serving outside of the church walls. It will be very sad to see him go but we all know that God has plans for him and for the future of Solon Center Wesleyan Church. We wish him all the best.”

Pastor Tom’s last Sunday at Solon Center Wesleyan will be July 26. The service will begin at 10 a.m. It will be the last time the congregation and guests will hear his encouraging words of “Go Be the Church!” at the end of the service. The church, friends, and family will send the Holloways on to their new destination in South Carolina, with a farewell party at 1 p.m. the same day. The invitation is open to anyone in the community who may wish to attend. The church is located on Algoma Avenue, just north of 19 Mile Road.

Pastor Tom’s last “From the Pulpit” article ran in last week’s issue of the Post. You can read it online at www.cedarspringspost.com.

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Terrance Arthur Gage II


C-OBIT-gage-webTerrance Arthur Gage II 39 of Cedar Springs, passed away on Thursday, May 21, 2015 from accidental injuries. Terry is now walking with the Lord. Terry was met by his Grandpa and Grandma Middleton, Grandpa Gage, Aunt Laurie and Grandson Israel. He was born July 31, 1975 in Lakeview, MI. Following graduation from High School Terry enlisted in the U.S. Navy, he very proudly served his country for 20 years retiring in July of 2014. He traveled a lot while in the service and his daughters were able to travel with him. Terry loved to cook and was known as the chef. He was learning to make bowls from different kinds of wood, enjoyed auction sales and flea markets and loved to hunt. He was always helping people and spending time with his family and friends. He was looking forward to seeing his son Kevin graduate from high school and his daughter Ashley from business college in Virginia. He will be missed by his family and friends. Surviving are the love of his life, Marti; daughters, Mykenzie, Ashley (Danny) Lopez, Kayli (Warren) Armock; son, Kevin; two grandson and one granddaughter whom he loved very much; father, Terry (Judy) Gage; mother, Carol Rowe; grandmother, Carol Gage; Marti’s parents, Charlie (Reta) McKee; sisters, Debbie (Tim) Prins, Sue (Joe) Molyneux, Colleen Maycroft, Chris (John) Sweeny; brothers, Paul (Jane) Ringler, David (Cheryl) Finnila, Todd Finnila; many aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins. The family greeted friends Wednesday, May 27 from 11:00 am until time of service at 1:00 pm at Solon Center Wesleyan Church, 15671 Algoma Avenue, Cedar Springs. Pastor Tom Holloway officiating.

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

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A March to Madness


Solon-Center-Wesleyan-webPastor Tom Holloway

Solon Center Wesleyan Church

15671 Algoma, Cedar Springs 

(just north of 19 Mile)

 

 

As I sit writing this article (which is late), I am wearing my Michigan State sweats and State Gymnastics t-shirt. I love March Madness, especially when my Spartans are playing as well as they are this year. But I don’t like madness in my life. I’m what you might describe as a control freak. I prefer to over-achieve, and I don’t like to fail.

I really don’t like to miss deadlines, and I stress out about letting other people down. Why is this article late? The first reason is the busyness of the Easter season. Throw in an auction for En Gedi on Friday, two weddings on Saturday, and my life is crazy busy. The second is an unforeseen tragedy.

The first is a matter of planning and stress control. For pastors the Easter season is one of both tremendous joy, and tremendous stress. Easter is the highlight of the Christian calendar, and the pinnacle of the church year. Some might call it Super Bowl Sunday for the church. When you plan ahead, it’s manageable. But tragedy strikes when you least expect it, and there is really no way to prepare yourself for it.

As we prepare for Easter, we are walking with Jesus as he approaches the cross. He tries to prepare His disciples for the tragedy that is about to befall them. I like to call it a March to Madness. Something is going to happen to them and it’s going to be devastating for a while (3 days to be exact). It’s going to test their resolve at the very core of their being. Though Jesus tried to prepare them for what was to come, they really didn’t get it. How could they?

This Sunday we will be celebrating “Palm Sunday,” where Jesus comes into Jerusalem triumphantly on a donkey and the people cheer and they love Him. They throw palm branches on the ground, and they shout, “Hosanna, Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” But soon those triumphant shouts of joy will turn to jeers and calling for the authorities to release the criminal Barabbas, instead of the Son of God, Jesus. The disciples must have been dumbfounded. How could this be? Why is this happening? What is God doing? How could He let this happen?

Then Jesus does something in the garden of Gethsemane that I think is key to this whole thing. He’s praying to His Father, and asks Him, is there another way? Can you take this situation from me? Then Jesus says, “Not my will, but Yours be done.”

I’ve found that in situations that I find myself in, especially the difficult ones, that there is something bigger in play. God is always trying to teach me something bigger than myself. We cannot avoid tragedy no matter what we do. Jesus says in John 16:33, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” You are guaranteed trouble, but I think despite these tragedies God wants to teach you something, as he did Michigan State basketball player Travis Trice, when he became ill in 2012 with a virus that no doctor could diagnose. He was sick for 8 weeks and lost 20 lbs. Travis said that while he was sick, he got a newfound outlook on life, and every day had new meaning. He saw God’s hand on his life, and his healing. In his illness there was a greater thing at work.

I believe that God wants to work in your life and my life in the same way, though we don’t always understand it. You can take comfort in 1 Corinthians 13:12, which says: “For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”

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Affordable health screenings 


 

HEA-LifeLineScreeningFebruary 28, at Solon Center Wesleyan

Residents living in and around the Cedar Springs, Michigan can learn about their risk for cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, and other chronic, serious conditions with affordable screenings by Life Line Screening. Solon Center Wesleyan Church will host this community event on Saturday, February 28. The site is located at 15671 Algoma in Cedar Springs.  Steve Hennigar of Oscoda, MI attended a Life Line Screening and said, “I’m sure Life Line Screening saved my life.”

Screenings can check for:

  • The level of plaque buildup in your arteries, related to risk for heart disease, stroke and overall vascular health.
  • HDL and LDL Cholesterol levels
  • Diabetes risk
  • Bone density as a risk for possible osteoporosis
  • Kidney and thyroid function, and more

Screenings are affordable, convenient and accessible for wheelchairs and those with trouble walking. Free parking is also available.

Packages start at $149, but consultants will work with you to create a package that is right for you based on your age and risk factors. Call 1-877-237-1287 or visit our website at www.lifelinescreening.com. Pre-registration is required.

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Peace on Earth


Solon-Center-Wesleyan-webPastor Tom Holloway

Solon Center Wesleyan Church

15671 Algoma, Cedar Springs 

(just north of 19 Mile)

 

The holidays are here and that means families get functions, work parties, Christmas programs, and most of all stress! The holidays can be the “most wonderful time of the year,” and also the most painful for many people. For some people it will be the first Christmas without a loved one, the first Christmas without a significant other, the first Christmas without a warm place to sleep. Yet it is for many the best time of the year.

I love celebrating Christmas with my family and my loved ones, and I love giving gifts. I love seeing my children’s eyes light up when they get that thing that they never thought they would get. Of course we can’t give all of the things we would like to give, and my wife and I have basically given up on giving each other anything significant, though I always spend more than I promise to spend on her. As a pastor of a local church, Christmas is the second busiest season of the year next to Easter. So it is one thing after another, and it is the most stressful time of the year for me personally. Yet I still manage to find some peace at Christmas. The question is why?

Why can some people feel stress and some people feel peace? Why is this time of year the best of times for some, and the worst of times for others? I think the answer is the real reason for the season. The birth of Jesus is the reason we celebrate Christmas, though some in the world would try to disagree. In fact, Jesus’ birth is the reason that we count the years on a calendar.  The term Anno Domini is medieval Latin, translated as In the year of the Lord, or AD on your calendar. He is the reason that we count time. When Jesus came to the earth He came to give us peace. In fact is says this in Isaiah 9:6: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

I don’t think that peace means a life of solitude and a life free from stress and worry. In fact Jesus came into the world in a time of great unrest for His people the Israelites. They were under Roman rule, and they had lost the great power they once had. It was anything but peaceful for Israel and for Jesus. He was persecuted, beaten, mocked, and eventually crucified on a cross for doing nothing wrong. Doesn’t seem very peaceful to me! But He defeated death by His resurrection, and by showing us how to have peace “despite” our circumstances. He allowed us to believe that this kind of peace is possible.

So when you are out shopping and that person snatches that last Furby, or when that crazy uncle comes to the family gathering and starts that political argument, or when you realize that this will be the first Christmas without that special someone, you can have peace.  Peace in knowing that someone loved you so much that they came from Heaven, from their rightful throne, and gave up all their rights so that they could come and serve you and show us how to love others. Christmas is all about giving to others because you have been given the greatest gift you could ever receive—the gift of Jesus, the gift of love, and the gift of eternal life!

 

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