April 01, 2016
Testimony by Dan Strauss
The Disaster Response Team from La Croix UMC in Cape Girardeau was serving in the St. Louis area hardest hit by the winter floods of 2015. One of the homes we were assigned to work on had been submerged in floodwater and sewage up to the roofline. There I had an opportunity to have a conversation with the homeowner I will call Liz.
Our team was taking a break for lunch when Liz approached me. She told me that she was picking up items at a local convenience store the day before when she noticed several people in the store wearing vests with the name of the disaster organization on them. She said she approached one of the group and in just a matter of a few seconds she completely fell apart. She said she was crying and telling them just how overwhelmed she was feeling.
She said, “Do you know what they did then?” I said they probably circled you and laid hands on you and went to prayer. She said, “Yes they did, and before they prayed for me they asked me what I needed from God.
I told them, “I need help to get the flooded sheet rock, flooring, and cabinets in the bath and kitchen removed. The basement was also flooded. I also need help getting the water out.” She then thanked the group for the prayer and said she felt more at peace then when she walked into the store. She then said, “You guys showed up today as an answer to my prayer. The only thing I could say is, ‘Isn’t God great?’”
We spent all day working at her home, and when we left that evening we were able to complete everything she had asked God to provide. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to be witness to God’s grace and his answer to prayer. Thank you for giving us this opportunity to serve God!
Testimony by Willie Cunningham
When I first spoke to Ray on the phone about cleaning up his flood damaged house, it was apparent he was a no nonsense guy with a lot on his mind. When he had to leave his job as a concrete worker to sign release forms and give us access to his house, he was even more stoic.
Ray’s whole lower finished basement portion of his home had been flooded with sewage-laden flood-water.
Everything was a total loss, and even worse, he had no flood insurance. When he saw our crew of five, it was evident that he was not impressed, plus he had taken off work to be on site.
Fast forward four hours and our crew had completely cleaned his large basement of all ruined furniture, drywall, ceiling tile, gutted a ruined bathroom, hosed down the walls and applied a bleach solution to all floors and walls. Several times during the afternoon of work, Ray was obviously stressed over the mess and enormity of his loss. When he joined us inside at the end of day, he was amazed at the amount of work and clean up completed.
We asked Ray if he would join us for prayer before we left. He said he would and added that he prayed daily. After a few simple minutes of prayer, we were all touched by Ray’s response. This tough concrete worker and homeowner had tears streaming down his face as he thanked us for all of our help while noting that he never thought we would get the job done in an afternoon.
Our crew started our afternoon planning to bless Ray by cleaning his flooded basement. At day’s end, Ray blessed each of us much more by sharing his heart and gratitude with us.
It is good to bring our mission statement to life. We have been blessed mightily!