Christmas Letter From Pastor Rob Benardo
Greetings in the name of the True and Faithful One – our Lord Jesus Christ! On behalf of the Tabernacle staff and our families, I just want to express our thanks to God and to all of you again at the end of 2019, for making the Battle Creek Tabernacle what it is today! Once again, I want to remind us all, what our faith response (to God’s faithfulness) has looked like in the past year.
Our faith has taken shape in acts of kindness through our Community Service Center and through our recent Health Fair. At the fair, we ministered to our community through dental services, skin and medical screenings, and preventative health training. Overall, we donated $ 85,000.00 in supplies and services, and it just proved to me that, with God’s help, we can do anything we put our minds to!
We were again faithful to our roots and heritage, faithful to our calling to share the gospel through evangelism, faithful to our children and youth in Sabbath school, to our pathfinders and adventurers, and faithful to our huge ministry responsibilities at Battle Creek Academy. As the Lord continues to bless us with opportunities, we can be sure that our footprint and impact in our community is only going to grow!
All of this was made possible by your prayers, your time and effort, and your faithful giving to our local budget and the special Christmas offering. Last year’s offering contributed 10% to our own missionaries in Papua New Guinea, and we were also able to finish off the purchase and installation of new exterior doors, complete needed brick repair/maintenance, and purchase new carpet for the upstairs stairway.
Again, this year, you have an opportunity to show your thankful response to our Lord, through our yearly Christmas offering. We count on this offering to support foreign missions, local missions, our church plant needs, and also for funds to help balance our yearly budget. The breakdown on utilization of funds received from this year’s offering are as follows:
* 10% to foreign Missions (AFM New Guinea)
* 70% to church improvement and maintenance
* 20% to church budget
I want to thank each of you in advance for your prayerful, faithful and at times sacrificial support of our church and its many ministries. At the end of the day, I think each of us wants to know that what we do really matters.
When it comes to giving to God and His work, we can be sure it is the best investment that we could possibly make! May God be singularly honored, may our church be more imbued with His Spirit, and may our community be more blessed than ever before because of this offering and because of the thankful hearts that have given it!
HE IS NEVER WEARY By Lorrie Rietman
A few nights ago, Nathaniel seemed to have an episode of night terrors. I woke at 1:30am from a sound sleep to the sound of him crying “Mama!” I found him sitting up in bed, crying inconsolably and not wanting to be held. Soon his cries turned into absolute screaming! He was screaming at the top of his lungs and refusing any consoling or reasoning. I sat there on his bed bewildered and useless. “Dear Lord,” I prayed. “Please help me console this child.”
After a few minutes, he did start to calm and let me hold him and not only hold him, he suddenly wanted me desperately. He clung to me like a life raft. When I went to lay him down, he tightened his hold and did not want me to go. Finally, about an hour from his initial cries, he settled back to sleep.
I went back to bed completely exhausted. I realize that Nathaniel was not coherent for any of this and none of it was against me but, within a span of an hour I was screamed at, my touch shunned and then the complete opposite.... I was embraced and clung to. The next day was rough because I was so tired, and the kids are so energetic. But we managed.
Aren’t you glad that God never grows weary? He can absolutely handle our issues. He can handle our fears and our passions. And not only does he handle them, He wants to take our burdens. I was useless to calm Nathaniel in that moment, but God is always able to calm, to listen, to bring the peace that passes understanding.
“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
PATHFINDER CLUB REPORT
By Brad and Tracey Hall, Directors of the Battle Creek Pioneers Pathfinder Club
In November the Pathfinder club was all about service. We collected food from the community and church members to redistribute to families that could use a little extra this holiday season.
We had almost 30 helpers and spent about 12 hours together collecting and re-boxing the food received. We also received almost $300 to purchase the food items that were still needed. We were able to bless 40 families this year.
“Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.” Colossians 3:23
FOURTH ANNUAL RECEPTION & RECOGNITION
By Joanne Rector – Hospitality Hub
On Sabbath evening, November 16, 2019, our Tabernacle family members attended a special event in the Seminar Rom to welcome and honor our newest members who have joined the Tabernacle during the past year through baptism or transfer of membership. Following a group photo, all attendees were invited to link hands and sing together “Blest Be the Tie That Binds”. We fellowshipped with our newest members while enjoying light refreshments in the dining room. It brings us great joy to welcome and get acquainted with these new members.
UPCOMING EVENTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS
VISITATION MINISTRY: Meets at 3:00 p.m. in the Seminar Room the 1st and 3rd Sabbath each month.
CONCERT SERIES: Please plan to join us again next year for our concert series. We have the following dates scheduled so far: January 11 – Gayle Murphy, April 18 – Dallas Holm and in March Buddy Houghtaling.