Sending Help

The state of Kentucky has been in the news over the past week due to historic flooding in the area. Other states such as Ohio and West Virginia have also been affected, but Kentucky has taken the brunt of it. The latest count has 37 people reported dead with hundreds still missing. The flooding has been described as “historic”. Kentucky Today reported, “Eastern Kentucky was declared a federal disaster area after up to 10 ½ inches of rain fell in 48 hours, triggering the widespread flooding.” And if this was not bad enough…more rain is expected according to the forecasts.
Photo courtesy of ABC News
Our hearts go out to the thousands affected by this natural disaster. The church wants to help but doesn’t always know how. We already know to pray, but also want to do something practical. One way Southern Baptists are helping in a practical way is through its Disaster Relief Program. Each state association in the SBC has trained volunteers that are sent to help whenever there is a natural disaster anywhere in the country. Already there have been teams sent to Kentucky from Alabama, North Carolina, Georgia and yes, New York. They will be helping with clearing, clean up, food kitchens, laundry, showers and spreading the gospel.
The same article from Kentucky Today states, “On Wednesday, a crew of Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief volunteers arrived to help her clean up the mess the flash flood left behind.
“What a blessing to have them here,” Hall said. “I wish I had the money to pay them what they’re worth.” While private contractors do such work for profit, the Disaster Relief volunteers accept no payments. Theirs is a ministry that offers hope and help to the hurting. “We’re just glad to be here doing what God has called us to do,” said Georgia Baptist volunteer Thomas Young”
The SBC Disaster Relief is a force of God’s people that is almost unmatched. It has more trained volunteers than either the Red Cross or Salvation Army and is the third largest financially. This is all due to the generous donations of SBC churches all over the country, including ours. When we give through the cooperative program, we give to the numerous ministries of our denomination. This includes Disaster Relief.
Photo courtesy of the Gospel Coalition
NAMB spokesperson Mike Ebert says, ‘the Red Cross does not prepare meals. Every hot meal they serve in a disaster setting in the United States is prepared by Southern Baptists. The Red Cross or FEMA buys the food, the Southern Baptists prepare it, and the Red Cross serves it from shelters or delivers it to neighborhoods. The system works beautifully…” The church’s impact is so strong President Trump referred to the Red Cross, Salvation Army and Disaster Relief as “the big three”.
And we are there now showing the love of Christ to those suffering in Kentucky. The article continues that in Kentucky the Disaster Relief , “have set up a feeding station as well as mobile showers and laundries so people can clean up after grueling days of shoveling mud and carting away soiled furnishings. These volunteers train continually for disaster responses. In the past year, they’ve been deployed to help people recover from tornadoes, hurricanes, and wildfires across the nation. They’ve also been sent to Poland to help with the Ukrainian refugee crisis. Laton Gilroy, a volunteer from First Baptist Church in Hinesville, Ga., said crews are taking breaks at least once an hour to cope with the heat and humidity. Gilroy, a construction contractor, sets aside four to five weeks each year for deployments with Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief. “What I get out of it is the blessing of being involved in a ministry that God has put on my heart,” he said.”
The faithful giving of our church to the state association is helping those in Kentucky today. Pray for those being sent. Pray for those who have lost everything due to the flood. And pray mostly that this tragedy is used as an avenue to save so many lost souls.

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