Sunday School Electives


All Sunday Electives meet from 9:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.

Grasping Grace in Times of Grief

October 27, November 3, 10
Clay Harrington
Choir Room

Grief affects us all in different ways. But regardless of whether the grief comes through a tragedy, a divorce or the death of a loved one - we are deeply altered. God, the Great Comforter, has something to say to each of us.

During this three-week class, participants will explore what God’s Word says about the process of grief and address such questions as:

How long do I grieve?

How do I understand my grief? 

Does God care? 

Why doesn’t my family understand? 

It’s been so long—why do I still hurt? 

Come and consider His comfort and healing.

Clay Harrington serves as Pastor for Senior Adults at Cedar Springs. He has both a Masters of Divinity and a Masters of Arts in Counseling and has served as a Minister of Counseling and was in private practice for 11 years before coming here in 2011. Clay dealt with grief personally when his third child died suddenly when only 3 months old. He is married to Bisha (33 years) and has three adult children.

Spiritual Formation 101

October 20, 27, November 3
Jim Branch

This class is designed to take participants through a reflective journey exploring the substance and the practice of spiritual formation.

More than a series of lectures, it is a conversation about what spiritual formation is, where it fits into the bigger picture of faith, and how to begin to nurture it in our lives.

During the three sessions, we will reflect together on the idea and the practice of spiritual formation. We will define it, contextualize it, examine its components, and discuss how it nurtures the life of God within and among us.

NOTE: Please bring your journal.

Jim is a long-time member of Cedar Springs and was actually on the church staff for ten years. He has been working in the area of spiritual formation for the past eight years and loves helping people connect more deeply with Jesus. He and his wife, Carol, live in Powell and have three grown children.

Using the Enneagram to Relate Well

December 8, 15, 22
Summers McMurray
Choir Room

This class designed to both introduce and dig into the Enneagram, a spiritual tool that increases compassion as it helps people learn how they and others view the world, God, and themselves.

Over three sessions, participants will learn about the history of the Enneagram, how to use (and not use) this helpful framework, and a how-to begin to utilize this tool to relate more deeply with themselves and others.

Summers McMurray is the Director of Young Families at Cedar Springs. She carries with her many years of clinical experience as a psychologist—working with families and couples, as well her own experience of raising three children with her husband, Torrey.

Impact 2020: Fulfilling God’s Plans for You

January 26, February 2, 9
John Tolsma

As 2020 kicks into gear, we’ll use the book of Romans as the foundation to set personal goals tied to God’s purpose for our lives. Paul’s letter contains direct, practical teaching for establishing the perspectives and the plans for living out the Christian life to impact others.

During the three-week session, we’ll dive deeply into the text of Romans 12 and apply it to set specific targets for the new year. By the end of the elective series, you’ll develop a road map for making the most of your gifts and talents to live out God’s amazing purpose for you.

John Tolsma is an entrepreneur and dad trying to figure out how to balance life, work, and family in a way that leaves an impact. He leads the teams at Knowledge Launch, a global customized executive education firm, but his real passion is using God’s Word as a catalyst for growth in his life and in those around him.

Understanding and Loving Muslims  (8 weeks)

February 16 - April 5
Issa Isaac

This class is designed to help participants better understand their Muslim neighbors—what they believe and how they think—to better engage them in friendship and love them to Christ.

The class will prepare participants for interactions with their Muslim neighbors, and will include video and discussion material to help demystify Islam­—allowing a glimpse into the modern Muslim mind and way of life. The class will explain how they perceive Westerners, and their understanding of Christians and Christianity. It will also explore how Muslims view the Bible, the person of Christ, and present biblical answers to their most pressing questions and objections regarding Christianity.

Issa Issac is a Palestinian believer who has worked with and befriended Muslims his entire life. For the last 10 years, he has hosted an Arabic-speaking Bible study for believers and seekers, including Muslims, in his home.

Raising Kids in Today’s Culture

March 22, 29, April 5
Summers McMurray
Choir Room

This class is designed to help parents learn how to relationally engage with their children and with God’s help, shape their children’s character to reflect Jesus and not the world around them.

Over three weeks, parents will engage with Scripture that provides a framework for how they are to relate with the children entrusted to them, as well as learn how to handle specific challenges from the culture (technology, social media, relationships, body image to name a few).

Summers McMurray is the Director of Young Families at Cedar Springs. She carries with her many years of clinical experience as a psychologist—working with families and couples, as well her own experience of raising three children with her husband, Torrey.

Contemplative Worship

March 22, 29, April 5
Leoma Gilley
Room B224

Contemplation is not common in our world today. Most of us don’t know what to do with silence, yet we desperately need silence. The emphasis of this elective will be on listening, particularly to God through his word and prayer.

Each practice will be briefly explained and then participants will have a chance to practice it. Learning to listen and control the “squirrels” that distract us will be challenging, but we will gently return to our task without judgment of ourselves. These practices help us to stop, listen and reflect. Each class will be independent of the others, though we will use the same practices in each session.

Leoma Gilley began attending the Order of St. Brigit (begun through Cedar Springs) in 2005. She learned about Lectio Divina and it has become a mainstay of her daily devotions. She learned about Centering Prayer through a workshop in the past year, and has found this practice very challenging, but beneficial.

Offense and Forgiveness

April 19, 26, May 3
Suzanne Stelling
Choir Room

This class is designed to prepare you for the potential offenses in your path, teach you Biblical responses to offense, and help you wisely practice forgiveness in offensive situations and relationships.

We will explore these questions: How does the Bible define offense, and what does it teach about it? What does Jesus teach about offense and forgiveness? How does Jesus model active forgiveness? Why is it so easy to be offended and so hard to forgive? How do I discern the difference between when to forgive vs when to reconcile? When do I trust someone who has offended me?

Suzanne Stelling, our Women’s Ministries director for a decade, learned about offense and forgiveness when her first marriage crumbled in 1999. She is living in East Knox trying to build bridges of forgiveness over rivers of offense and injustice, often using freshly-baked cookies to open hearts and doors.

Finding Christ Throughout the Scriptures

Wednesday Evenings

January 15 - May 20
(Except March 4, 11 and April 8)
7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Issa Isaac & Dale Berry
Fireside Room (across from the Gym)

Participants of this class will take an adventurous journey through both Testaments of the Scriptures—from Genesis to the Gospel of John—to discover Christ.

This study will utilize materials known as Al-Massira, meaning “The Journey.” Al-Massira was developed to help Muslims and other seekers discover who Jesus is, and to learn about his presence throughout Biblical history.

All ages (high school and up) are welcome. It will deeply enrich your faith and understanding.