Sunday Grace: Blessings From Disaster

“Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate?  Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.
  Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.  Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.”
Philippians 2:1-4
It’s been 11 days since horrific storms ripped through the state of Alabama, leaving a path of destruction that one could have never imagined.  Our kids are finally returning to school as our little community here is still reeling from the destruction and asking that all important question, “WHY?”
I sure don’t have an answer, but this last week I do know that the future of our country is going to be OK.
A group of high school students in South Pittsburg (just a few miles away in Tennessee) completely and totally gave away a trip that they had planned to help the family of a young man who was killed in the tornados.  The young man was a classmate of my Madeline, so this story has really held her attention and meant so much to her.
FROM our Local News Channel in Chattanooga….
BRIDGEPORT, AL (WRCB)-  Students from South Pittsburg High School in Marion County, TN are coming to the aid of a storm-stricken family from neighboring Bridgeport, Alabama. The students raised two thousand dollars for an end-of-school-year trip to Tybee Island, but after last week’s tragic outbreak of storms, they have decided to cancel their trip and help a local family.  Here is more information from the Marion County Messenger: 
After the devastating storms that affected our area last week, one group of students at a local high school are ready to help aid storm victims, and in a very unselfish way.
Mary Kathrine Dawkins’ Transition/Life Skills class at South Pittsburg High School have been working hard all school year to raise money for an annual class trip.  At the end of each school year, Dawkins, and her assistant, Elizabeth Mount, accompany the class on a trip (usually to a nearby beach) to celebrate the end of school each year.  Some of these students have never had the opportunity to see the beach, much less travel until this trip.
This year the class worked hard to raise money by selling  soft drinks, making “spirit buttons” for school events and ball games, as well as putting their button-making skills to work to make campaign buttons at election time.  Their hard work resulted in the class raising $2,000, which they decided to use for a trip to Tybee Island, GA later this month.
With the news of last week’s storms and all of the local devastation, the class wanted some way to help victims of the storm from around our area.  They met Monday and unanimously voted to give the money to victims of the tornado that affected nearby Bridgeport, AL.
Teachers Dawkins and Mount gave their full support of their decision and went to SPHS Principal Allen Pratt to get final permission to continue with the wishes of the class, of which he obliged.
Mrs. Mount says she’s very proud of her students.  “They were thinking of others at this time instead of themselves.  It’s a true life lesson, and I’m proud of them.”
The class has decided to donate the money to a Bridgeport family who lost their 12 year old son in Wednesday’s storms.  The family’s home was also severely damaged, and the mother remains in an area hospital in critical condition.
The class hopes the money they raised will help this local family in their time of need to cover medical expenses and funeral expenses for their departed loved one.
When we told one local resident about the decision the class made, they summed it up best by saying, “In times like these with all of the bad press schools are getting around the nation, it’s good to see that we have raised a group of children in our community with big hearts and unselfish minds.”
South Pittsburg High Students
 
 
There is more to this story as the story got out, an anonymous donor gave money for the kids to take the trip and a hotel in Tybee offered them free rooms and meals so that they could take the trip anyway!
As I have seen young people work and pull together for the benefit of others by giving their time, it is clear that a lot of good is to come in their futures.

 

 

You hear a lot of negative talk about young people today, but all I can say is you really ought to get to know some of them before you speak.  They can teach us more than you could ever imagine.
If you want to help in anyway, please contribute to your local Red Cross or you can contribute to this nonprofit  organization out of Nashville, Church of Christ Disaster Relief.  These two groups have done wonderful things for our little state.

One thought on “Sunday Grace: Blessings From Disaster

  1. It does the heart good to know that there are caring teens out there. Something like this seems to bring out the very best in people. Praying that each day brings a brighter outlook for all the survivors.

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