It has been a challenging week for the Disaster Response Team in Oklahoma. They have felt the attacks of the Enemy in their midst through health struggles, discouragement and sorrow at the destruction they’ve seen. In the midst of it all they have clung to the Lord and each other and have stayed joyful and God has immensely blessed their efforts! Below is an update from team member Alex Hisey. Alex has Epilepsy and traveled to Oklahoma with her seizure alert dog Frannie. They have both been a blessing to the team and those they’ve come in contact with in Moore. Alex had a small seizure yesterday, but Frannie alerted her ahead of time and she was able to control it with medicine and all was well – praise the Lord! Alex writes in her blog about how God has used the group in ways they did not expect, primarily by speaking into the lives of other volunteers. As a result of their faithfulness and flexibility to Choose Compassion in whatever way the Lord led, they were able to celebrate the baptism of another volunteer yesterday! Enjoy reading this inspiring update and continue praying for this team:
While canvassing neighborhoods some of the team didn’t get much of a response. Honestly, they were a bit discouraged. But Ernesto and Lea had one amazing thing happen. They thought that they were walking those neighborhoods to minister to those who have lost so much. Instead, they ended up ministering to a young woman who is also here volunteering. She has had a rough life and doesn’t even own a Bible but she was so interested. They gave her a Bible and she began flipping through it asking some tough questions. Her parents do not approve of her pursuing God so she’s a little confused as to what to do but it will work out and she has some great people to help her with those struggles. Praise be to God for using Lea and Ernesto even if it was in an unexpected way!!
Some of the team went back out to the piece of land that the older couple owns. The work seems to never end there. They are so grateful for us and have thanked each one of us countless times. Today they showed up with a T-shirt for every person on the team with their Church’s motto on it. “GOD CAN DO ANYTHING. E 3:20.” What an amazing gift! I don’t think any of us will forget those lovely people.
Jerry, Marcy and myself headed to the high school for the day to assist people who were coming in for help. A lot of organizations were set up with little booths. Whatever a family needed, you could bet was there. Unfortunately, Frannie alerted me and I had a seizure. Just a small one. No worries. She is an awesome dog. But the Red Cross has a policy about calling an ambulance so I got a little unwanted attention. I was fine though and spent the rest of my day at the home base praying over prayer cards that victims and their loved ones filled out. My heart broke with some of them and my heart had joy for others. I don’t like seizures but today God used one to put me exactly where I needed to be. I also met a woman whose friends just moved to Meru, Kenya! That’s exactly where my mission trips to Africa have been. So, now I’m friends with them on Facebook and they’re asking questions. There are definitely no coincidences in this life.
Marcy made an amazing connection with a woman who just wanted to end her life. Marcy said that she was nervous and had no idea what to say to this woman. But God gave her the words and the compassion and now Marcy will be spending a lot of tomorrow with her just to build her up and love on her. Kudos to Marcy for stepping out of her comfort zone for His work. God is so amazing!
Many people here who don’t have large groups have become attached to our Savannah Christian team. They come to our devos and debriefings and we’ve gladly adopted them. One’s name is Justin. He is a young guy who has had a tough life. You could tell when we first met him that he had a story. Well, he was curious about God, asked a lot of questions, had the right people put into his path and this evening he was baptized and added to the Kingdom of God!! The angels are all rejoicing tonight in Heaven!
As the week has gone on, we have all been able to go and see the Elementary School where the 7 children died. Honestly, I don’t have words to describe it all. Just tears.
Today was a difficult day for most of us. The good outweighed the bad but the emotions of all of the devastation here sunk in. Many felt sad and discouraged. But as we all talked it out, we realized that there was absolutely nothing to be discouraged about. God put us all in the place He wanted us to be in and it paid off. Our day didn’t go as planned but it went as He planned and that is exactly what matters the most.
Tomorrow is our last full day at work and then we have half a day Friday. Please pray that we open ourselves up to being as useful as we can be for God’s work…even if the work is nothing like we imagined it to be.”