Sunday, February 26, 2006
We figured out the photos!!!!
We did it! We have figured out how to send photos through here so from now on you should get a photo with each entry.
The one on the left is us living behind the church in the parking lot. Our trailer is on the left, the other one is the FEMA trailer which we might be moving into but is still questionable. You also see the back of our donated pick up truck.
The photo on the right is what's left of a Baptist Church in Biloxi, which is the city about 20 minutes from here, to the west. This is the side of the church that faced the ocean, which is across the street. This is along interstate 90 that runs directly along the coastline. All of the upstairs is exposed and the entire building will need to be demolished.
We need your feedback on these photos; is the download time too long? Are they coming through clear enough? Is this something that you find more interesting than just the journaling? We are new at this and will be learning as we go along. Remember, this blogsite is for all of you----let us know your comments!
Today we attended church right here. This congregation used to be around 400 and is now less than 50. Some of the members just moved north after the storm and are not returning. Others are just too bombarded with all the work on their own homes to take the time to come to church on Sunday mornings. Others...? It is our goal to get this church built back up so it can be ministering to the needs of the city as God designed it to.
We were visited by 5 gentlemen from Minnesota this afternoon. Most of them are electricians and they will be pulling their camper over here and joining us in the parking lot for all of next week. They will concentrate most of their efforts here in the church. Some of the construction has sort of been getting the cart before the horse but we are coming along and improving each day. The men will also be doing come carpentry work, installing doors and such. They will be a very welcome site and it will be facinating to see what changes come about. We are so thankful for the help.
Our excitement is also building because we heard that our own home church will be sending volunteers in a couple of weeks! I cannot tell you how anxious we are to see our friends from home! Even though we have only been here a little over a week it's amazing how much we miss them! We encourage any of you who might be thinking of coming down to make the commitment and do so! We will house you here at the church. There are more than enough air mattresses, you just need a sleeping bag or blanket to put on top. You will need money for food, the amount of meals you choose to eat each day is up to you. We just do not have the facilities here to cook. Eating at some of the local places is part of the fun of the trip.
After meeting with the electricians we decided to eat an early dinner and take a drive and watch the sunset from the beach. When we got to the restaurant we saw a 1 1/2 ton truck parked next to us. It had a magnet advertisement on it saying they were RV Volunteers. The couple was just returning to the truck and we struck up a conversation with them. They are here from the Chicago area. They are retired and although he is a telephone man he is here doing sheetrock finishing. We shared stories there in the parking lot for quite some time. It's always nice to talk with people who are also here volunteering. They have only been here a week and are going back home. Sharing with someone else volunteering helps and gives us the boost we need to keep going.
I also met with one of the school teachers here this afternoon. She and her husband had come back to finish up some school preparations for tomorrow. We got into conversation and they were saying how emotional they had both been a couple of days ago. She was telling how long it feels like it has been and how tired they are. Both of them work full time and then try and do the work on their house evenings and weekends. They are exhausted and feel as though it will never get done. She said simple things like cleaning their yard and planting flowers for the spring are just out of the question. I started telling her how volunteers could help in those areas and she and he both lit up like light bulbs. This is something they have never thought of. We talked about how we are going to get volunteers back and how much work they could do to help people like themselves. They were thrilled at the thought and both were so very thankful at just the offer! THIS is what we have been talking about----THIS is what God has us down here to do.
I heard a program on the TV this morning before going to church and they were talking about how the volunteers that have come down here and helping heal both homes and hearts. They challenged us all to "be the hope". This is the goal Monty and I have been talking about. We hope and pray we are able to connect those who have a need with those who have something to offer. This is where all of you come in. You can help us help them or you can come and help them directly. The choice is yours!
We did get to the ocean and watch an absolutely beautiful sunset on the coastline. We discovered that we needed to focus on the water and the sunset itself as there is so much trash everywhere it can distract from the beauty. While we were there both Monty and I had the opportunity to talk with friends from home who called so it really did make for a perfect sunset. Thanks to Karen and Joe!!! We love you guys! SOOOO much!
Until tomorrow and hopefully more photos (we have enough for weeks already) may God bless and keep you as you begin another week. Remember, every day is a gift from God and it is up to us how we use each hour of that day!
We love you all.
Susan and Monty