God is Strong and He Cares—Message of Hope by PASTOR MICHAEL CISLER North Kent Bible Church Concerning the terrible devastation that has come upon Japan following the earthquake and tsunami of March 11, a newsperson recently asked which of the following two things is true. Is God strong enough to take care of things but doesn’t care enough to do so, or is God very caring but not strong enough to take care of things? At first I was disappointed because the truth was not given as one of the options. Then I realized that likely many people ask this question, not knowing there is another answer. Concerning the strength and caring of God, Genesis 1:1 says, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.” Luke 1:37 says, “Nothing is impossible with God.” God created the heavens and the earth and, with Him, all things are possible. His strength is not lacking. John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God loves people so much that He gave us His son. In 2 Peter 3:9 it says, “The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” God’s care for us is great and He does not desire that anyone should perish. So why does so much bad happen in our world? God is strong, God cares, and God has allowed man to make his own decisions. When Adam and Eve sinned in the Garden of Eden, they brought upon the then-perfect earth a curse. And we still see that curse in place today as death and sorrow are around us. But God has also made a way through Jesus for people to have peace today and a hope for the future. 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.” We can have peace in the world today through Jesus. We also have hope for the future, […]
March 24 2011
Directors of Wolverine World Wide Inc. (NYSE: WWW) recently declared a quarterly cash dividend increase of $0.12 per share of common stock, representing a 9.1% increase over the previous quarterly dividend. The dividend is payable on May 2, 2011 to stockholders of record on April 1, 2011, and reflects an indicated annual dividend of $0.48 per share. Commenting on the increase, Blake W. Krueger, WWW’s chairman and chief executive officer, stated, “The dividend increase reflects Wolverine World Wide’s continued strong cash generation and our commitment to sharing our cash flow with shareholders.” With a commitment to service and product excellence, WWW is one of the world’s leading marketers of branded casual, active lifestyle, work, outdoor sport and uniform footwear and apparel. The company’s products are carried by leading retailers in the U.S. and globally in 180 countries and territories. For additional information, please visit their website at www.wolverineworldwide.com.
by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL Last Thursday evening was Veterans Night at the opening of this year’s Ultimate Sport Show at DeVos Place. The Rockford Squire was there to specifically cover a very special ceremony honoring surviving veterans who had served their country in times of war and peace since WWII. We were especially pleased to find U.S. Marine Corporal Josh Hoffman (with ties to Rockford) present that evening in order to receive special honors for what he had given up in the protection of our freedoms. You may recall that Josh had been felled by a sniper’s shot through the neck while on patrol in Iraq’s Anbar province in 2007. The bullet left him paralyzed from the chest down. After more than a year of medical treatment and therapy, Josh was released to return home to Michigan, where he continued rehab along with 24/7 care that will continue for the rest of his life. In 2009 Josh moved into a house in Middleville that had been especially constructed to meet his needs going forward. He resides there to this day with the full-time assistance of a caregiver. At the opening of the ceremony, patriotism flowed through DeVos Place as a military color guard of veterans, followed by color guards representing each and every branch of the Armed Services, marched the entire length of the entrance concourse of DeVos Place to the ceremonial stage. Hundreds of onlookers, with hands on their hearts, witnessed the procession as it passed, followed by a flag created by Rockford’s Sherrie Coke. Titled “Freedom,” the flag, composed of over 1,000 American veterans’ thumbprints, was carried fittingly by two Marines. The flag had been Coke’s entrant in the 2010 Grand Rapids ArtPrize competition. During the ceremony, surrounded by hundreds of well-wishers—friends, family and veterans alike—Cpl. Hoffman was honored and presented with a beautifully framed shadowbox containing all of his medals and ribbons, not the least of which was the Purple Heart. Proudly displayed on stage in the background was “Freedom,” Coke’s U.S. flag. The veterans in our midst that evening and countless others, some of whom have lain down their lives, reinforce what it truly means to be a proud American. […]
by CARSON CLAY One night recently I took our dog, Annie, for a walk along the ridge. The path leads to a swinging bridge that spans Michigan’s Rogue River. Lake effect snow had accumulated but the trail was still open. The temperature and wind were cold but not bitterly so. Annie and I continued on toward a stump where I normally rest. Sitting down I gazed through the trees and caught a glimpse of a misty glow in the sky. Then, as if by magic, the wind pushed the clouds away and in white gold splendor a full moon was revealed. Strangely, it seemed to be larger than normal. Thoughts came to me of the nature of this sphere that seemingly floated above. Later I looked up orbits and phases of the moon. In all, our moon’s elliptical orbit varies in distance about 36,300 miles. Apogee is the word that describes its farthest distance from Earth and perigee stands for the nearest it will be. I will not delve into rotational periods and tidal locking that requires a PhD to understand. Suffice to say, when I saw the full moon, it was January 19 and its elliptical orbit brought it very close to the Earth. Yes the moon did, in fact, appear larger because it was about 18,000 miles closer. The moon was in a perigee with our planet. This past weekend, on March 19 it was even closer. The moon was 252,000 miles away and on that night it was full. I thank God for that moment in time when I was gifted with the view of such a wonder. I sat and looked on for a while, but clouds moved in and there was only a glow in the sky. As is my habit, I moved on to the bridge and walked out to look at the rushing water. While I stood there, the haze dispersed once more and there it was in the water… the moon’s reflection. August moons, Harvest moons and Hunters moons are truly beautiful. But in Michigan on a winter night when the clouds melt away, they pale in comparison to the magnificence of January’s Wolf moon.
With over 50 teams competing at the Division I State Swim Championships on March 11-12 at Oakland University, Rockford showed just how far they have come this year when they nabbed the third-place title with 150 points, becoming the only west side team to bring home a trophy. It has been 10 long years since the Rams have brought back a trophy to Rockford, and four years since a Rockford male swimmer has claimed first in an individual event. But all that changed over the weekend. Junior Eric Chisholm clenched the individual state title with his swim in the 50-yard free in the finals on Saturday, clocking a lightning speed time of 21.19 seconds. Along with an individual state championship, the Rams also broke two high school records and placed all three relays in the top 16. The 200-yard medley relay team of Craig Wasberg, Bryan Wasberg, Ben Fredrickson, and Chisholm swam their fastest relay splits of the season to grab second place in an “All American” time of 135.19, breaking the 2001 Rockford record previously held by K. Hyde, K. Cannon, N. Harley and C. Sullivan, who held it with a 135.50. Freshman C. Wasberg made an immediate impact at the state meet when he also broke a 10-year-old Rockford record previously held by Kevin Hyde (53.00) with his swim in the prelims of the backstroke (52.79). Wasberg placed fifth overall in the finals of the backstroke on Saturday. Rockford accumulated numerous points from their other two relays when swimmers Chisholm, Jeff Schmitt, Fredrickson, and B. Wasberg touched in fifth place in the 200-yard free relay (1:27.43), and the 400-yard relay team of Schmitt, Mike Arend, Trenton Babcock and C. Wasberg grabbed 13th in a time of 3:16.42. With only the top 16 individuals able to score in each event, the Rams came out with big points in the 100-yard fly when both C. Wasberg and Fredrickson locked into the top eight finals, placing fourth and sixth respectively. Juniors Chisholm and B. Wasberg also contributed in the consolation finals with Chisholm’s 15th place in the 100-yard free, and B. Wasberg’s ninth place in the 200-yard IM and 10th place in the 100-yard breaststroke. Rockford senior diver LJ McCauley and sophomore swimmer Arend (500-yard free) […]