Christianity Will Flourish

whitefieldAlthough George Whitefield was a member of the Church of England, he consistently made it clear that he was supportive of anyone who acknowledged Jesus as his or her Savior. Check out this quote from one of his sermons—

“When we confine the Spirit of God to this or that particular church; and are not willing to converse with any but those of the same communion; this is to be righteous over-much with a witness: and so it is, to confine our communion within church walls, and to think that Jesus could not preach in a field as well as on consecrated ground…this is bigotry. … Christianity will never flourish, till we are all of one heart and of one mind; and this would be the only means of seeing the gospel of Jesus not to flourish, more than ever it will by persecuting those who differ from us. … I say it again, I love all that love the Lord Jesus Christ, and esteem him my brother, my friend, my spouse; aye, my very soul is knit to that person.”

How much more the Church would flourish if we all were UNITED in this same attitude!

Cedar Springs Churches Making History

This is an article from the Cedar Springs Post

N-United1-300x225The churches in the Cedar Springs area are pretty good at making history.

In 2009, eight area churches joined together in Morley Park to worship together, something rare in most communities. Last Saturday, August 23, the churches met together in Morley Park for their seventh UNITED service, and did something no other community ministerial association in the country has done—together they raised $5,000 to send audio Bibles to refugees in Kurdistan, Iraq, through World Mission.

The audio Bible, called the Treasure, is about the size of an MP3 player. World Mission uses the Treasure as a tool to deliver the Word of God to those who have never heard, targeting especially unreached people. It is a solar-powered audio Bible given to oral learners in their own language.

N-United2-300x225According to Craig Carter, Pastor of North Kent Community Church and part time representative for World Mission, he had previously worked with World Mission on the project, and when he presented the project to the Cedar Springs Ministerial Association pastors, they liked the idea. Area churches presented it to their congregations, then began to collect change in banks through Vacation Bible School offerings and throughout their churches.

“We are absolutely the first ministerial association to do this,” said Carter. He said that World Mission CEO Greg Kelley was excited about it and made a video at the UNITED service. “He thinks it will inspire other communities,” he explained.

Overall, the $5,000 will purchase about 225 units. Fifty went to Kenya on a mission trip with Pastor Kristi Rhodes and Hillcrest Community Church, and the rest will go to Kurdistan. Carter said that they chose Kurdistan because of the problems with ISIS and the persecutions taking place. He estimates that the audio Bibles will reach a minimum of 25,000 people in one year.

“Audio learners—people who cannot read—are very social. They gather with others, and the audio Bibles will be shared in listening groups. We estimate they will be shared at least 10 times in a year,” he explained. He said they will stay in the field for a minimum of three years, so could reach as many as 75,000 people.

“It’s exciting,” said Carter. “If we have the ability to reach that many people (25,000) in one event, we should also be able to reach our own community, which is about that size.”

Another thing they did this year is took the $1,000 they would normally spend on a hot dog lunch after the service, and decided to donate it to feed refugees in Kurdistan. “It should feed about 3,500 people,” he said.

The Treasures are expected to go to Kurdistan in October, when a medical team is going and the food distribution will take place.

To find out more about the Treasure, you can visit, or contact Pastor Craig Carter at 616-550-6398.

Love Broadly, Love Deeply

Charles Spurgeon had it right…

C.H. Spurgeon“I am sure, if we shall ever learn the breadth of Christ’s love, our love will grow broad: we shall no longer confine our love to our own church, but shall care for all the churches of God; we shall feel an affection not only for Christians of our own name, but to Christians of all names. Then our love will gain length also. We shall love Christ so that we cannot leave off loving Him. We shall persevere in love, we shall abide in His love as He abides in it. We shall constantly have the flame of our love going up to heaven. And then our love will acquire depth.” —Charles Spurgeon

Join us this Sunday for UNITED as we learn to love more broadly and more deeply. Our UNITED service begins at 11am.


Over 100 years ago, South African pastor Andrew Murray penned these words which still ring true today—

Andrew Murray

Andrew Murray

UNITED prayer is a great privilege, and its power waits to be experienced. … if friends believed how effective two or three praying in concert could be; if in every prayer meeting faith in His presence and expectation of an answer were foremost; if in every church united prayer was regarded as one of the chief purposes for which Christians come together—the highest exercise of their power as a church; if in the church universal the coming of the kingdom, and the King himself, first in the mighty outpouring of His Holy Spirit, and then in His own glorious person, were matters of ceaseless pleading with God, who could predict what blessing might come through those who agree to prove God’s promises?

In Cedar Springs, we want to see the blessings that God will pour out on our community when “the church universal” unites in prayer.

Please join us for UNITED 2015 on Sunday, August 23, at 11am.