History of Christians Encouraging Christians, Inc.
Christians Encouraging Christians, Inc. is the fulfillment of a dream for Lloyd & Kathryn Spradley. In their earlier married life they came to the realization that at one time or another everyone needs encouragement. In their study of scripture they noted an abundance of scripture instructing Christians to encourage one another. Not just giving someone a pat on the back or using flattery but giving true, life changing encouragement. When they began practically encouraging others, it became apparent that people were hungry for personal contact and that just a small effort on their part could make a huge difference in another person’s life. They discovered that there are as many different ways of encouraging as there are people to encourage. What might encourage one person might not another and what might encourage them might not affect their friend at all.
During their time of experimentation with encouragement, they were raising two daughters, Shelley and Celinda. Lloyd and Kathryn wanted to not only practice what they were learning but felt a real need to instill in their daughters a desire to be encouragers as well. Whenever any project or activity was questioned they would be reminded that it was being done because Christians encourage Christians.
In an effort to learn more about encouragement, Lloyd and Kathryn made it a part of their life by devoting three years to a concentrated effort of finding ways of encouraging others. They also had the desire to instill in other Christians an awareness of their responsibility in regards to encouragement. During this three-year period they met many Christians who were interested in becoming an encourager but just did not know where to begin.
They realized that most Christians just need to be reminded to encourage, and so they asked Michael Fox, a graphic designer and friend, to develop a logo that could be used for stickers or pins that would remind people to practice encouragement. These were not only reminders for the people using them but also became a conversation starter to share the idea of encouragement with others. Thus Christians Encouraging Christians or CEC was born.
In 2001 Lloyd and Kathryn decided to trademark the logo and incorporate Christians Encouraging Christians as a charitable, nonprofit organization. In this way others could make tax-deductable contributions to help promote the mission of CEC. In May, 2002, Christians Encouraging Christians, Inc. became a registered nonprofit organization under the IRS designation of 501(c)(3).