As many of you may know, this past November Poured Out hosted a 5k Fun Run for water, where the generous commitment of over 100 individuals lead to a day of fun and fund-raising! We couldn’t have done it alone, though. Linda Gregory, a 27 year-old nursing student from Fort Wayne, Indiana, put aside her busy schedule and put together the event in near entirety. Her heart for people in need and willingness to sacrifice for their aid inspired Poured Out’s Steve Adams to speak up about this unsung hero.
Once upon a time there was a hurricane that awakened a lot of people to volunteer and help out as the church is called to do. Within that story something changed for young women of God who was leading teams from her college to help the people of New Orleans; Linda Gregory, a nursing student in her early twenties, was called to begin to serve the broken. Linda experienced a deep shift of the soul as she was getting ready for graduation from Indiana Wesleyan University, yet she wasn’t sure how to use her degree to help people. It was at this pivotal point in her life when Linda met a relief pastor that was willing to open his heart and home to her and help her with the call within her soul to help people find hope and healing. Linda entered nursing school looking for another way of helping people in disaster contexts, and made quite a few realizations about the nature of disaster. She discovered that ‘disaster’ doesn’t always mean a natural disaster that people need hope within; sometimes it is in our backyards and around us in the broken things in life.
During this preparation time in Linda’s life, an earthquake of 7.4 leveled an already broken and extremely poor Haiti. With a full-time job and full-time schooling, Linda chiseled away time to give to the poorest of poor in the Haitian mountains, stricken with chorea. Linda noticed that this place reflected the valley of the shadow of death, and she climbed a mountain with biofilter in her hand and a new vision in her heart that would change the way she looked at humanity and medicine. She realized at that point that helping families with clean water is a medicine that will save babies and bring peace to moms’ hearts who daily ask God for their children’s health to be cared for. Standing in the middle of one of these homes, a Haitian mom handed Linda her newborn baby. In that moment, two women from opposite hemispheres connected with a common ground of celebrating life and modern solutions that could clean water and push back the plague of chorea stealing dreams and lives.
It seems like at those places in life we all face some honest questions about who we are, what legacy we hope to leave behind, and how to leverage the things we to help the least of these within our world. Linda made a choice long ago to serve God but never knew where that would lead her or what it would require. Early in her high school years Linda began to be a runner, she carried that passion to run into college where she ran cross-country and track. In the beginning of November, Linda awakened her running community to be a part of a fundraiser in New Baltimore MI in the form a Poured Out 5k Fun Run. It was a beautiful sunny Sunday afternoon when more than hundred runners and walkers came out to enjoy a cause that can save lives and bring hope to the people of Haiti. Two communities came together to help a hurting community, and the results were amazing. Over $2,600 was raised, meaning 26 families and 260 people now have clean water to drink for ten years.
When the team at Poured Out asked Linda how it felt to bring clean water to 260 people, she replied, “it was amazing to see fellow runners get awakened to this great need and help the people of Haiti by just running.” As the poured out team packed up and said our goodbyes to all who helped that day, we reflected upon how God is making many things sunny in so many lives. Thank you North Shore Church for sharing and sponsoring this event, and for your leadership team that just gives and gives. It is truly a “poured-out” community. May God bless your community of faith as it chooses to step into the waters of helping people. We are thankful for people like Linda who risk, give, and dream about the things that are close to Christ’s heart. My God bless you with His presence and power.
Thanks team Poured Out!
DR Committee Head