Here is a remarkable story from Matthew Braselton, one of the Second Mile pastors. Stuff like this is why I love our church! Matthew writes:
Last night was one of the most difficult, yet most encouraging nights of my “career” as a pastor. I was called by Greg Scallon, who works at Gilbert Hospital around 5pm and asked if I could come lead an impromptu Prayer service at 8pm for a young lady who was tragically injured in a motorcycle accident the day before. When he called, she was on life-support, but had no brain activity. She was 19 yrs old, a pre-med student at U of A, and volunteered at Gilbert Hospital on the weekends. She was a beloved member of the staff family at the hospital, and many of her co-workers were grieving and hoping to meet together to pray for her.
Greg, who has a significant leadership role at the hospital, is know for his commitment to Christ, and the lady organizing the prayer time asked if he knew of anyone who could lead it.
When I got the news, I asked some folks for help in getting the word out to our church family (via The City, phones calls, text messages…). I was blown away by how God provided over the next few hours!
Many of you dropped whatever plans you had for the evening, showed up at 8pm in the cold, and stood outside to pray for and support around 60+ grieving people you didn’t even know. This sort of self-sacrifice and “running toward pain” is a dramatic embodiment of Jesus’ heart and mission and a stunning display of His love, grace, and compassion. The service went well, and many of you had a chance to pray gospel truth over a ripe harvest field of hurting lost folks searching for answers.
As I reflect on the events of last night, I am brought to tears as I consider the grace of God and the evidence of His Spirit working in the lives of people in His body. Allow me to thank God for a few things in relation to these events:
1. I thank God for men and women like Greg Scallon who faithfully live out their faith, day in and day out, in the secular work arena. He certainly is a light of hope in that place, and had (has) the blessed privilege of being used by God in a very difficult situation like this.
2. I thank God for changing the hearts of selfish sinners (like me) such that they would be moved with compassion by the suffering of strangers and press in to people’s pain in an effort of offer the hope and healing power of the gospel.
3. I thank God for a hope that is unshakable, imperishable, and undefiled. A glorious hope that stands as a beacon of light, security, and life in the midst of great sorrow and pain.
Since last night, the family removed the young lady from life support and she passed away.
Greg said the impact you all made on the staff at the hospital is incalculable. He’s had many people ask about our church, God, his faith… A relatively small sacrifice of your time seems to be creating a large impact for the kingdom.
Please continue to pray for all the folks touched by this tragedy. God is certainly at work in powerful ways, and it’s so cool to see people drawn to Him through this.
Thank you, Second Mile!