Become an Emotional First Responder
Last September, WC sent a team down to Tennessee when they were devastated by flooding. We partner with Christ in Action, and when they deploy, it is our goal to send support, whether financially or by sending teams. The team that went to Tennessee encountered many people in different situations. The water destroyed some individuals’ houses and possessions, and they needed to start over. Some were on the other side of the creek and weren’t physically affected. Still, they were deeply shaken seeing their neighbors, some just a few hundred feet away, encounter unimaginable loss. Unfortunately, some lost loved ones during the event and their homes. With these families, sometimes sitting in silence, praying, and listening to them speak about their loved ones was what they needed at that moment. We encountered the sobering sight of people’s beds, parts of siding from houses, and other belongings stuck in trees over thirty feet high off the ground. The power and devastation from the flash flood were incredible.
Dave and his wife lived up the road from one of our main demolition sites. We were able to speak with them on multiple occasions. They were retired, and while their house was repairable, they had lost everything else during the flood. They actually climbed onto furniture to avoid the water in their home over six feet deep until they were rescued. They were grateful to be alive.
We heard many similar stories as we prayer-walked throughout the community. Many told us they were overwhelmed and deeply moved that people from all over the country would drop everything and come to their neighborhood in their time of need. The churches that had come down that week were from Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Illinois. They all had one goal: to come alongside the local church who were trying to support their hurting community and show the love of Jesus in a practical way to those devasted. The love of Jesus was shining brightly and on display for this small community. The work we did not only saved some of these families thousands of dollars, but the hope that was given, the prayers that were prayed, and the gospel that touched these lives had an impact that might only be seen in eternity.
Worship Center had the privilege of sending a team to St Charles, Louisiana, in 2020 when Hurricane Ida hit the area. Last year, we had the opportunity to send a team to a local trailer park in Leola that had been devastated by heavy rains and flooding. We were able to remove wet and moldy insulation from below the trailers as well as remove the flooring. With partnerships from some local businesses, we installed new insulation in several trailers so they were ready for winter.
Disaster Relief is a unique ministry since we never know when or where disaster may hit and what communities may need. We also interact with individuals in the initial stages of grief and devastation as we respond in the weeks following the event. Our response presents an excellent opportunity for the gospel to be shown through our words and actions. Many times we see people with no hope cling to the gospel message.
It’s possible to offer this kind of emotional first response in any difficult situation. Worship Center will host Christ in Action on October 14 and 15 for training in “Emotional First Response” so that we can impact our local communities or wherever we find ourselves to help those going through difficult times. This training can help us assist those going through natural disasters, emotional disasters, or any difficult time in their lives.
Click here to register for the training. Get in touch with our Disaster Relief Coordinator if you are interested in joining the disaster relief team at Worship Center or have questions about the Christ in Action training.