Institute in Basic Life Principles

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ALERT Deployment Report

The Defining Moment of the Durant, MS ALERT Deployment
 
A group of our men spent May 8-10 on a deployment to Durant, Mississippi, one of many towns affected by the tornadoes that swept through the South at the end of April. The town is located in one of the poorest counties in Mississippi and continues to be in need of volunteers to help with recovery efforts.

Some deployments seem to have a defining moment—a particular encounter that reminds us of why we do what we do. Tuesday morning took us to a Quonset-shaped home that was in need of a tarp on one of its walls. The occupants survived the tornado, but, for this household, even greater battles are being fought. Both the father, Isaiah, and his 42-year-old son, Thomas, are experiencing the ravages of cancer. Truly, unless God intervenes in a miraculous way, the two men will soon move into eternity. Isaiah lay moaning on his hospital bed in the living room—emaciated, one eye missing, and his face so sunken in that he was barely recognizable—trying to find some sort of relief from the pain. His wife Mattie stood stoically at his bedside. We offered what comfort we could through holding his hands in prayer, singing the hymn, “Amazing Grace,” and then presenting a Bible from Samaritan’s Purse, the organization we partnered with on this deployment.

Just an hour earlier we had assisted Thomas into a car with a health care attendant who was transporting him to the hospital for treatment related to liver failure. The son, too, was wasting away—well under 100 pounds and barely able to support himself. Uncertain if we would ever see Thomas again, the condition of his soul became a far greater concern than his physical well-being. The Gospel was shared in a clear and concise manner with him. He was asked if he had any uncertainty about his eternal destiny, and if so, counseled that he should invite Christ to be his Savior. Thomas did acknowledge his need and, in a barely audible voice, received Christ as his Lord. It was a touching moment as we prayed with him, while the nurse waited patiently with her hand on our staff member’s shoulder during the prayer.

The purpose of serving others in time of need is to share the Gospel. Truly, you are as much a part of this work, through your prayers and giving, as the men who go out into the field. Over 38 people have come to Christ in the community of Durant through the ministry of Samaritan’s Purse and others. Thanks so much for partnering with us. The fields of Durant, Mississippi are truly ripe unto harvest!
 
To learn more about the ALERT program, visit alertmen.org.

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