Gib, Adam, James, and Nathan met up with Pat Pinkston, Al and a team from Florida in Port Arthur this past week. Pat took his flat bed trailer, picked up the food that had been brought in through the combined ministries of Pastor Fritz and OSA and took it out to the older folks and people who couldn't get in to get food. James Esser went with Pat. He had the sound system and was proclaiming the gospel on the streets.
Adam, James and Gib had the opportunity to pray with almost everyone who received food. Gib said he sensed God's hand on him in a way he never had before. He was filled with the joy of the Lord that God would use him in this way. Flip pointed out that men who have been involved in the hurricane outreach have moved into a whole different level and realm of ministry.
Adam from North Carolina, who just met Jesus this August, led a girl to the Lord. Gib told how he could see the brokenness of the hurricane survivors and could sense God ministering in their heart. “I told them it is like they've been saved out of a burning building. We've given them this stuff, God has brought them out through Katrina. If we just give them food and don't tell them the rest of the story and send them back into the burning building without Jesus, then their blood is on our hands.” People's spirit was different, he said, because they'd been broken by losing everything. “We had to be sensitive in how we ministered the Word,” he said.
One lady, a hurricane survivor, told the men, “You need to hold church service!” So the following day, Thursday morning, they did. About 10 people showed up and shared their testimonies about how God had worked in their lives through their losses. A black woman described her fear of white people based on what she had heard about slavery days. She said she had never been more than five miles from home, but when the hurricane was due, she ended up 130 miles from home. A white man asked if her family needed help, explaining that his family lived nine miles out in the woods. With fear and trepidation, they went with him. The first thing they saw at his home was a Confederate flag. But the woman said she had never been treated so nicely in her life as she was treated by this white family.
A gentleman said he didn't sleep Wednesday night because he was so anxious to get to church. When the service was over a woman and two girls showed up. This turned out to be his ex mother in-law. One of the girls was his daughter whom his wife had kept him from seeing. Gib said they all talked for quite awhile and hugged each other. This was completely God orchestrated because neither expected the other to be there. Gib said the church service and reunion all took place on the driveway of a middle school, “So forget separation of church and state,” he advised.
Chris and Shelly Clegg with their son Christopher formed a team from St. Louis. They went to Mount Olive to Pastor Duckworth's place. Flip said the good pastor has become a fast friend of OSA. He said other churches are coming to Pastor Duckworth, rather than the Red Cross or other organizations, for help. The Cleggs spent three weeks gathering food and money. They came down Friday, Oct. 14. Chris took Pastor Duckworth to Wal-Mart and asked him what kind of food he needed for people. He bought $800 worth of food and gave him $300 for additional needs.