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Tuscaloosa, Alabama – I have watched for weeks as churches put forth Herculean effort to resource and rescue thousands of Tuscaloosa citizens in the wake of one of the most devastating storms in our country’s history. Still The Body functions in excellence.  This week, a meeting of 40 Tuscaloosa pastors met for a time of unified, corporate prayer to seek God’s wisdom for each other, their congregations and the city. The wisdom of God will be a strong requirement to move forward with vision and fortitude in the months, and likely years, ahead.

Each day I observe the undeniable need for funding the local church as we become increasingly aware of these organizations as powerful centralized distribution hubs for stability, resource and counsel.  Churches, like mini City Halls, possess the infrastructure for financial disbursement and accountability, the ability to provide clothing, food and shelter, stability and healing as well as serving as points of access for connection to every conceivable vocation through its members. Churches are the finest “one stop shopping”  option for disaster relief.  In the days ahead, all churches will be utilized more frequently as access hubs for immediate stabilization, healing and disbursement of resources but first they themselves must be properly structured and resourced. This is serious, time -sensitive  business.

Genesis 41:38 states, “So Pharoah asked them, ‘Can we find anyone like this man, one in whom is the Spirit of God?’ ” Pharoah of course was referring to Joseph. This is the hour for marketplace Joseph’s to stand in preparation and walk in action to equip, fund and structure the Church, the bride of Christ, in anticipation of His return and enable Her to stand uprightly and majestically within every community served. (Not merely have Her stand with the aid of a cane or a walker – but properly financially resourced to function in full capacity. )

The need for funding has never been greater for churches and ministries in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. I am writing to simply sound the alarm because of what I see happening. The anointing is here, the people and hearts are here but it is time to move and equip these Brides. Do not let the Bride go hungry (food banks), dress shabbily (clothes closets) or be in ill health (health centers) or become in disrepair. Do not let the Bride become inadequately staffed and forced to turn from people who require healing and wise counsel – the type of counsel that is imparted from the wise and Godly as they hear from the Spirit of God.

Job 32:8
“But it is the spirit in a man, the breath of the Almighty,
that gives Him understanding”

Equip the Bride and Her Children, para church ministries that are not churches. Do not make them beg for discernment of their worth if you know they are set apart by God for His work and purposes. Tuscaloosa is no different from any other community – disaster will come to a city near you – each Bride in each community needs to be equipped and structured.

It is the responsibility of the Church through The Body to equip, educate and counsel people on El Shaddai (God Almighty, All Sufficient One, Genesis 17:1)and the meaning of the covenant, redemptive names purchased through the exchange at the cross and Jesus’ blood sacrifice which covers the scope of every human need : Shammah (His Presence, Ezekial 48:35), Shalom (Peace, Judges 6:24), Ra-ah (Shepherd / Pastor, Psalm 23:1), Jireh (Provision, Genesis 22:14),  Nisi, ( Banner of Victory over principalities and darkness, Exodus 17:15),  Righteousness (Tsidkenu, Jeremiah 23:6), Rapha (Healer, Exodus 15:26), and Jehovah M’Kaddesh (Sanctifier, Leviticus 20:8). A tremendous responsibility indeed but one in which The Church, the Bride of Christ is uniquely designed to deliver but must be adequately enabled to perform. Simply put, please give money to the churches, they will soon be serving entire cities, not just their own membership rolls.

The city lost 21 churches plus the Salvation Army buildings. Please pray for those people who have lost their places of worship, fellowship, resource and community. Thank you for your continued prayers that city and state government leadership and spiritual leadership hear from the spirit of God.

Tracy Gatewood
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