“Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing" (Matt. 6:1–3).
In a time when public relations can make a world of difference, our Lord’s words really put things into perspective. Some may see these things as “charitable acts," but churches within Alaska Conference view these actions as “acts of the Spirit” because they really are the work of an awesome God.
In September 2022, the west coast of Alaska was battered by Typhoon Merbok, the worst storm in a half century. It left behind many devastated seaside communities.
Alaska Conference, Arctic Mission Adventure and Adventist Communities Services promptly organized relief efforts with the help of local churches. They arranged a food drive, collected donations, purchased generators and gathered other needed goods. Adrian Neacsu, Wasilla Church pastor, was privileged to be part of the team that delivered the donated items to the affected communities and witnessed first-hand how faith in God — and maybe in humanity as well — was restored.
Alaska residents always hear of needs around the state, which is a vast expanse of mostly untouched wilderness, like grocery stores lost in fires or villages severely affected by record low salmon runs. Relief efforts are always needed.
God was clearly communicating that the Typhoon Merbok Relief effort was by no means the end, but the beginning of a ministry collaboration desperately needed in the great state of Alaska. Shortly after Typhoon Merbok, God provided a plane through Gospel Ministries International. Two volunteer commercial pilots flew the plane multiple times, loaded each time with about 1,000 pounds of fresh produce, fruits and literature all over the state. Generous donors, a network of people that grew larger by the day, worked together to bless others and testified that the only measure of God’s love is love without measure.