Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Hurricane Florence: Entry #24

Today, we distributed the last of our disaster relief supplies and not a minute too soon either as Hurricane Michael is threatening our area just one month after Hurricane Florence slammed us.  

But, before we talk about Hurricane Michael, let's go back to Saturday evening when preparations for today began.  We knew the team members that had been helping us load and distribute disaster relief supplies would not be available for this last distribution.  Feeling quite desperate, I cried out to God in prayer asking Him to send us help … and He did.  He sent us the Burroughs family from Florida, a family of 6 who were visiting family locally and who worshipped with us at church on Sunday.  They asked if there was anything their family could do to help with the disaster relief going on and I almost cried.  I almost cried because God had heard my cry and answered it so quickly and I almost cried because this meant that my husband and I wouldn't have to load and distribute the last load by ourselves.

(This was just a portion of what had to be loaded.)

Yesterday, we (the Burroughs and my husband and I) loaded everything we could get on a 25' box truck and this morning we headed out to Bolton, NC.  Bolton was one of the areas that was completely shut off from everyone by flood waters and had to have food air-dropped into them.  As we drove into the area we saw numerous homes with tarps on their roofs.  (I hope they withstand what we're supposed to get from Hurricane Michael.)
Even before we could get set up, people were lining up and for 2 1/2 hours it was a steady, continuous stream …

We kept at it until everything except a few boxes of laundry detergent and 2 cases of water were gone.  We gave away mops, brooms, diapers, baby care boxes, personal care boxes, food boxes, pillows, blankets, spray cleaner with bleach, bleach, twin size sheets, full size sheets, queen size sheets, tarps, mold remediation buckets, laundry detergent, water and more … and the people were so appreciative!  One little elderly lady asked me if she could use what we gave her for the upcoming hurricane, I told her she sure could!

Our team consisted of 8 amazing people and several people from the community who volunteered to help.  God made sure we had plenty of help today … He knew we would need it!

Today's distribution brings to a close this phase of our disaster relief efforts.  The next phase consists of cooking for workers coming to the area to help clean out and rebuild a South Lumberton church building that was flooded for the second time  (Once from Hurricane Matthew 2 years ago and from Hurricane Florence last month.)  But, before we start that phase we have to hit the pause button and prepare for Hurricane Michael!  The latest local news reports are telling us to expect winds of 35 -  40+ miles per hour, 3 - 7 inches of rain, the possibility of tornadoes since we will be on the east side of the hurricane and to prepare to lose power.  The first waves of rain are forecast to start coming in tomorrow evening/night and last through Thursday night/Friday morning.  

This area does not need this right now, please pray for all that will be affected.

My husband and I have been doing disaster relief distribution for 3 full weeks (except on Sundays), 12 - 16 hours each day.  We are mentally and physically exhausted.  

I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart to all who have financially contributed to our efforts, to those who worked along beside us, to those who gave us encouragement, to those who let us borrow things to make our task easier and to those who prayed for us.  It's been a long 3 weeks (today started week #4) and we couldn't have done what we've done without all of your efforts.  Hundreds of people have been helped because of your efforts, you had a part in making a difference to each of them!  Thank you!  Thank you!  Thank you!

She looketh well to the ways of her household … Proverbs 31:27
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  1. Patsi, I do hope you can have a good rest now and aren't in hurricane Michael's path. I just read about the hurricane online tonight and that is headed for the panhandle where I have a friend living. I still haven't heard from my friend in Raleigh so I am presuming she is okay. Actually I am just now watching on TV the aftermath of one of your hurricanes from a few years ago that hit Florida....Irma. Very scary!

  2. You have all done an amazing job! I am now watching CNN as Hurricane Michael starts to make landfall and it is a huge storm - the waters are already coming inland and inundating areas. I know the Carolinas are also in it's path but I'm hoping that the worst of it will be past by the time it reaches you and not too much more water arrives. Stay safe.

  3. Please make sure you have enough left in your own tanks to get through anything that 'Michael' might throw at you. If good people, like yourselves, run out of energy then those who depend on you will miss out. Please, please, please take care of yourselves. Put yourselves first, just for a little while. Praying that Michael does a U Turn and heads out to see and disapates.


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