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January 19

Guest Preacher

Rev. Tim Habecker


"Faith Heard, Seen, and Applied"


Genesis: 22:1-19
Hebrews 11:17-22

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Linda Pokrajac
January 16, 2020  

Dear MLEPC Family and Friends,

This week we welcome to our pulpit Rev. Tim Habecker, Senior Program Director at Ligonier Camp & Conference Center. Our church has a long history with Ligonier Camp. I discovered that Dr. Jim Hall's father was instrumental in the purchase of the land for the camp and provided scholarships for many boys to attend through the years. Dr. Hall and his brothers attended for a month each summer, and he himself worked there several summers as a counselor, lifeguard, and as part of the maintenance crew. Our former Helpmates Sunday School class began going to Ligonier Camp for a family winter retreat in 1971. The class continued those retreats until around 2010. I was at one of the last retreats, and it was a precious time for study, worship, sharing memories, and enjoying fellowship and fun together. Many children from our church attended summer camp. Some gave their lives to Christ at Ligonier Camp, including Paul Emery, a long-time member who passed away this summer. Some young people met their spouses at camp, including one of the Halls' granddaughters. Children who, like Dr. Hall, grew up and went back as counselors and staff, now, as adults, send their children to summer camp - and some of those children have spent summers working at Ligonier Camp!

The relationship we have with Ligonier Camp is a good example of our topic this week, "The Importance of Modeled Faith." Ligonier Camp is an MLEPC family tradition where families model the importance of time set apart to spend with God. Other MLEPC members have a tradition of going to Deer Valley Camp, and there are probably many other Christian camps I'm not aware of. The point is this: Christian church camps and retreats are prime opportunities for adults and young adults to model their faith. And we look forward to our second All-Church Retreat on March 13-15 as an opportunity for that again this year!

The devotion in this week's Sermon Series Study Guide was written by Children's Director Ashley Gardner, and one of the questions asked is, "Why do you think it is or is not important for parents to actively model their faith to their kids or Christians to model their faith to the community?" This is an important question to consider. Our Genesis passage is the familiar story of Abraham and Isaac, where Abraham trusted God to the point that he was willing to sacrifice his own son, demonstrating faith based on God's past faithfulness. We have seen God's past faithfulness in our lives as we remember those times when we've trusted in Him and seen Him at work. Sharing those stories with the next generation is strengthening that generation to face life's challenges ahead.

Sadly, in our world today, modeled faith is becoming a lost art. Children are growing up in homes where parents have never been exposed to the gospel message. If we, the church, do not model our faith to them, who will? The writer of Hebrews, generations after Abraham and Isaac's famous moment, recalls that event: "By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, of whom it was said, 'Through Isaac shall your offspring be named'" (Hebrews 11:17-18). May the faith we model to our children, grandchildren, our church family and beyond, be remembered and shared in generations to come.

Love, in Christ,
Pastor Linda

  • Sunday, January 19, is the deadline to RSVP for "Snow Tubing with Dad," to be held at Hidden Valley Resort on Saturday, January 25. Email Cliff Luft to RSVP or ask any questions:
  • The Prayer Promoters Team is expanding opportunities for members to come together for prayer to include some Sunday morning options. The "Hour of Prayer" will meet from 7:45 - 8:45 a.m. on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month (in the Parlor), and it will meet from 7:00 - 8:00 p.m. on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th Sundays of the month (in the City View Room). All are invited and encouraged to attend. Contact Elder Pat Gaudio ( with any questions.
  • Sunday January 26, SINGLE UNIFIED SERVICE AT 10:00 A.M., followed by annual congregational meeting and a fellowship meal of soups, salad, bread and cookies.
  • Our Deacons will be collecting non-perishable food items (no liquids please!) to pack boxes to send to our 24 college students as a tangible reminder of God's love this Valentine season. We will be in the lobby on Sundays, January 26 and February 2 to receive your collections, or you can bring them into the church any time before February 6 and place them in the designated box in the coat room. Financial donations to defray the cost of mailing are also welcome; checks may be made payable to MLEPC with "college ministry" noted in the memo line.
  • SAVE THE DATE! Our All-Church Retreat will be Friday - Sunday, March 13-15, at Laurelville Mennonite Church Center in Mt. Pleasant, PA. Kenyan Pastor Job Simiyu will be our speaker! What an opportunity this will be to share faith among the generations attending!
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