Time and time again I have reported on a special organization with which I am proud to associate myself as an Oklahoma Baptist and trainee of this group.
They are a group of God-professing, selfless, tough, hard-working, joyful people. They are Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief.
When tragedy or disaster strikes, Disaster Relief is there. Most recently, they have served in Houston, and continue to serve there in the wake of Hurricane Harvey which struck last August. They went to Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria annihilated the Caribbean country.
They were there after the Moore tornado of 2013; they were there after Hurricane Katrina, and they have served after multiple tsunamis and other natural disasters. No matter what the case or scenario, you can count on seeing those bright yellow shirts and hats going towards the chaos, rather than fleeing in the opposite direction.
This past spring, my husband and I had the opportunity to get DR trained. One might think when training to be on a disaster relief team that the atmosphere would be somber, or even fearful, but what a wonderful group of people we met.
The average age of the room was not Millennials or even Generation X. Nope! Most of those serving in Disaster Relief are Baby Boomers or even some older. Many of those serving have indeed retired and are enjoying their golden years doing hard labor. For what reason you may ask?
Because they can. They are a group of people who aren’t afraid to get dirty in the middle of a home that has burned to the ground or sustained flood waters as tall as they are. They’re a group of people who if they can’t physically serve they’ll serve in any way possible. They’re a group of people whom I want to be around.
Most recently, Disaster Relief sprang to action as wildfires spread across the western Oklahoma prairie, much like the wildfires did earlier this year and last burning hundreds of thousands of acres of farmland from Oklahoma to Colorado.
I have never seen a more organized or well-run organization from top to bottom. When a task may seem daunting or too heavy for the few hands on deck, the Disaster Relief network shows up, and the job is done, beyond anyone’s expectations.
What is their driving force? What keeps them going when they work alongside first-responders for 12+ hours? The sweetest name I know, Jesus!
This group of people shows Jesus everywhere they go, not only by telling others about His love for them but by the fruits of their labor and their actions.
I haven’t seen a better example of what it looks like to selflessly serve and love those in need on this side of heaven than Oklahoma Baptist Disaster Relief.
I am so incredibly thankful for this group of people, as they gear up time and time again to go and be the hands and feet of Jesus in the wake of tragedy and despair. They are the light in situations that seem hopelessly dark.
Should disaster strike and a massive workforce need-be called up, I hope I have the opportunity to serve along my brothers and sisters in Christ, as I’ve now many times been able to witness with my own eyes. This group of people you see, when they get together and put on that bright yellow uniform, it is a miraculous scene to behold.