Strength team rallies Laurens community for Christ

Writer: Clay Webb

On March 25, the Team Impact planners of Davidson Street Baptist Church, Clinton, met to prepare for an eventful weekend. Eight weeks later, the church hosted Team Impact for the Laurens County community.

Randall Harris, a 12-year veteran of Team Impact, rolls up a metal frying pan like a burrito. "It really hurts me to see a good frying pan go to waste," said Harris. "I could cook up some good things in there."

Randall Harris, a 12-year veteran of Team Impact, rolls up a metal frying pan like a burrito. “It really hurts me to see a good frying pan go to waste,” said Harris. “I could cook up some good things in there.”

Team Impact, a Christian strength organization based outside of Houston, Texas, sent two of its members to Davidson Street May 16-18. Brian Vickers and Randall Harris, who can collectively bench press more than 1,400 pounds, visited all Laurens County School District #56 elementary schools and Bell Street Middle School on Friday.

The duo presented an anti-bullying message and asked the students questions as to whether certain situations were “dream-makers” or “dream-takers.” Vickers and Harris also performed a few of their smaller feats of strength for the school audiences, bending metal rods and breaking wooden baseball bats.

The Davidson Street team leaders who helped organize the weekend were in charge of preparation, clean up, publicity and following up on salvation decisions. “Bringing Team Impact to our church was amazing for us because it let our church reach unreached people in a way most churches cannot,” youth minister Crystal Caughman said. “We brought in strong men who could break stuff, and it was very exciting and fun for all of us to watch, but while all these people were here, they heard the Word of God, which was our main goal.”

On Friday night, Vickers and Harris presented the first of three 75-minute shows. The other two shows were Saturday and Sunday nights. The two men broke concrete blocks with their forearms, lifted telephone poles, ripped open cans of soda, bent metal rods with their teeth, and bent an aluminum baseball bat until it snapped — with the crowd chanting support.

Approximately 300 people attended the Friday and Saturday night events, and more than 500 crowded into the sanctuary for the Sunday evening program. “It’s definitely one of the largest crowds I’ve seen at our church,” said Phillip Ackerman, a deacon and a church member for 42 years. “We’re not a big church, but an event like this shows that … if God is involved, anything can happen.”

Brian Vickers prepares to rip a can of soda in half at Bell Street Middle School.

Brian Vickers prepares to rip a can of soda in half at Bell Street Middle School.

“Team Impact was a very successful weekend for our church,” said Davidson Street pastor Kenny Moore. “Vacation Bible School is coming up in a few weeks, and this is a great jumpstart for us. We had 150 responses the three days Team Impact was here, and that’s outstanding.”

For more information on Team Impact, visit team-impact.com. For more on the event at Davidson Street Baptist Church, visit facebook.com/ImpactClinton.

 — Clay Webb, 17, is a member of Davidson Street Baptist Church.