The title of this article is a phrase that has been used by journalist for the last several years. A good example of this was seen in the year 2012 when an early morning tornado outbreak occurred in Alabama on January 23. Diane Sawyer, who was the anchor for ABC World News, claimed that the residents of Alabama had no warning of the tornadoes. However, local chief meteorologist James Spann with ABC WBMA quickly defended his station for being on the air non-stop during the outbreak. (Click here for the full story)
Like the story above, the exact same thing can be said of a preacher or a preaching student who is striving to do the Lord’s Will. When we have plans or an unexpected situation comes up, we might be tempted to say, “that came without warning.” On Wednesday, September 20, 2017, I had the honor of teaching Bible class at the Central church of Christ in Harriman, TN. My plans after church were to go home and get caught up on school work that needed to get done. However, the Lord had another plan for me. As I was teaching Bible class, a 20 year old male walked in about 30 minutes late and apologized for his tardiness. The members and I welcomed him in and I told him what book we were studying from. After services, I noticed that none of the members of the congregation were talking to the visitor so I approached him and sat down with him and stated, “My name is Tyler, what is yours?” He told me that his name was Dalton and from that moment on I listened to his story. He quickly informed me that he was wanting to study to become a Christian and we did so. Two hours later, I had the distinct honor of baptizing him into Christ for the remission of his sins (photo below). So much for getting school work done haha.
Later that evening as I continued to get to know him, he told me about his current living situation and how he needed some help around his “grandparents” home. I agreed to come down and help him clean up after school that Friday. When I arrived at his home on Friday, I was utterly shocked at what I saw. A few members from the Central church of Christ had joined me in the clean up effort and were shocked by the conditions of the home. By our actions, that following Sunday, Dalton’s brother (James) and cousin (Shane), after much study, were added to the body of Christ through baptism (pictures below).
As word began to spread throughout their family regarding their new found commitment to the cause of Christ, more family members came expressing their interest in learning more about the gospel of Jesus Christ. That following Tuesday at the Central church of Christ, we had a dinner and a Bible study with the remaining members of the family and after 2-3 hours of study, seven more precious souls were added to the Lord’s church. In a span of 6 days, 10 people were saved from their sins. One might say, how does this happen? This is unheard of! Well, I am reminded of what Jesus said in Matthew 19:26 where He proclaimed, “With man, this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” God through me allowed me to have the opportunity to reach out to 10 people who had hit rock bottom and were in search for hope. Well, I’m honored to say that they have that hope now. Sure some of them might fall away, but I ask that you will help me in praying for these new brothers and sisters in Christ.
Not Pictured: Dorothy Spears who was baptized at the Central church of Christ.
Back Row: (L-R)- Shane Phillips, Dalton Tinch, James Tinch, Tyler Binkley Front Row: (L-R)- Lisa Livingston, Crystal Wells, Curtis Bible (member of the Central church of Christ).