HARRISBURG (BRN) – A Baptist Resource Network (BRN) church and disaster relief team quickly jumped into action after a devastating, early morning apartment fire left forty-eight people, most of them Bhutanese, without a home in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
The American Red Cross immediately helped provide temporary housing at a local fire station, but a more practical and hospitable solution was urgently needed. At this point, the BRN State Disaster Relief Team and East Shore Baptist Church said, “We can help.”
With arms wide open, East Shore Baptist provided their Fellowship Hall for the families to live and sleep in. The Red Cross continued to supply food, volunteers and insurance coverage, while the BRN disaster relief team provided a mobile shower/laundry unit.
However, there was more happening than just meeting physical needs as the time the families spent at East Shore just “happened” to coincide with the church’s branding and launching of a new Nepalese (the language of most Bhutanese) Church plant – Revival Covenant Church.
Just a coincidence? No. This is another example of God’s impeccable timing. Members from the church plant were able to speak to the displaced families in their native language and plant many seeds that will, hopefully, lead to further gospel conversations.
Perhaps one ‘moral of the story’ is for Christians to take advantage of opportunities when God presents them to you, despite challenges or inconveniences.
Did East Shore have to rearrange many of their Sunday School rooms and find new locations for all of the activities that would normally meet in the Fellowship Hall? Yes, but it was worth it for Jesus.
Did volunteer disaster relief members have to put in overtime hours to staff and maintain the mobile shower unit? Yes, but it was worth it for Jesus. After all, demonstrating the love of Jesus is always, always worth it!