Back Oklahoma Mission Journey Diary: Day 1
July 9th, 2013
By Kaylan Christopher, Staff Writer
SUNDAY, JUNE 30
On May 20, the sky went black and an F5 tornado blew through the city of Moore, Oklahoma, a suburb of Oklahoma City, spitting winds up to 210 miles per hour. It completely demolished neighborhoods and businesses, killing 24 people, including seven children at Plaza Towers Elementary.
OKC was devastated and still reeling when another catastrophe struck.
Just 11 days later, on May 31, a second F5 tornado—at 2.6 miles wide, the largest ever recorded—ravaged El Reno, Oklahoma, another suburb. The 400-mile-per-hours winds picked up homes, cars, and more and threw them in neighboring fields and cities.
The city shut down for days. But one month later, when disaster relief plans were in place, 23 people from Kairos were on the ground to serve the communities that were hit.
Her nickname is Levi (because her family comes from the Jewish tribe of Levi). Her dad even survived the Holocaust. She's a third generation farmer along with her husband. And her family has lived and worked the land in Oklahoma for more than 30 years.
After the first tornado, Moore gained national media attention. But what was unseen were the farmers in rural Oklahoma, southwest of the City, who lost everything to the second tornado—crops, cattle, equipment, and more.
The biggest loss—or threat of it—have been their crops. Because of the debris littering their fields, they've been unable to harvest. And the time for harvesting is now.
Levi saw the need and did something about it. She created an organization called Field of Teams, sending volunteers like us to help remove debris and help them out—including one family, the Courtneys. That's where we come in.
On Sunday, June 30, the Kairos team ventured out into their wheat field. We spent all day scouring 120 acres for items that didn't belong there—pieces of tin, roofing, boards, pictures, furniture, and more.
Just the weekend before, temps reached 110. But an unusual cold front entered Oklahoma over the weekend, giving us a comfortable 85 degrees to work in.
It was hard work. The fields were plentiful. The workers were few. But we got the job done. Plus, the reward of sharing Christ's love through our actions made it all worth it. That's why we came—because He first loved us.
Want to read more from the Oklahoma Mission Journey?
Oklahoma Mission Journey Diary: Day 2
Oklahoma Mission Journey Diary: Day 3