Tuesday, May 23, 2006

North Carolina arrived

My apologies for not blogging last night but my computer had to be set up for this wireless and it was way!!!!! too late to get anything done! We had moved all day, with the heat in the 90's and getting everything arranged in the trailer was exhausting but we got it done. We ended up at the community college across the highway taking showers as ours was not hooked up yet. The college has been opening their aquatic center since the storm and since there are no showers here the volunteers go over there and everyone can get showered at the same time with no waiting. It works out very well and we are so thankful to them for being so generous!

Around 10:30 last night the team from North Carolina came in. They were also exhausted and got things organized just enough to crash for the rest of the night. For the first time since we have been having teams there are more females than men --- go girls!

Today started with Steve giving devotions. He and his wife, Carol and the coordinators that have been here since October and are going home for good on Saturday morning. He wanted to go ahead and do devotions this week and we're glad as he does a great job! The teams went for breakfast before returning around 8am for the devotion. From there we had 3 jobs lined up and had them divide themselves based on skills and abilities. Some of them headed north, way north, to sheetrock a couple's home. The home only flooded around the outside rooms and they were able to purchase and install their own insulation but could not physically do the sheetrock. A team went and as usual, the team was the one who received the blessings. The husband worked right along side of the team thus giving alot of time for conversation and stories of the storm. This team will be returning tomorrow morning to continue their job.

Another part of the team went to Gladys's to start working on her floors. There are a few weak spots in the floors that needed to be removed and replaced before the floating hardwood flooring can be installed. Thanks to the California team's donation Monty and I went and purchased the flooring last night and it is now loaded into the house and ready for installation when they get the floors repaired. They also had to add some small pieces of sheetrock around the shower area and the girls who were just learning to do so did a great job. They will also be returning tomorrow to continue on with the project.

The third part of the team went back to John's house to prime and paint his walls in his kitchen, dining room, bath and spare room. John was having trouble with leaking at his kitchen sink but after some investigation Monty found it was nothing more than a clogged drain. The team got a couple of the rooms primed before running out of primer. They also discovered that the paint we had planned to use was bad so both will be replaced tomorrow and they will go on about their work.

Monty and I were invited to a banquet "Light for the Lost" this evening. We really had no idea what it was about. We only knew it was a steak dinner at a local church and there would be a speaker. What a wonderful evening! Light for the Lost is a mission that provides evangelical literature to places all around the world. The speaker was incredible and had some wonderful points about the call to missions that are worth sharing with you.
1. The command is NOT optional! This really hit home with us as when we started this mission we did not feel like it was something we could either do or not do, it was something we HAD to do! Now I know why.
2. The capabilities are mind boggling! How true this is. Just answering His call brings about things and situations that would have never entered my mind! God promises to equip us for any mission He calls us into and He never lies! You just have no idea unless you answer the call He places in your heart!
3. Conflict is inevitable! Boy oh boy do we know this is true! You see, when you are following the call God has given you it makes the devil very angry! Thus comes the conflict! We have run into those who do not understand what we are doing and why we are doing it. They have their own opinions about how it should be done and who should be helped and who should not be helped. Thus comes the conflict! The conflict only makes both of us realize we ARE doing what we should be doing and we ARE following God's direction (not mans) or else the devil would leave us alone.
4. Your commitment of faith is necessary if you are going to accomplish your goal! Yes, without commitment you will fall at the first sign of conflict, you will loose heart and the goal will never be reached. When Monty and I made this commitment to come here and work in this relief effort it was a leap of faith! Our goal was, and is, to help the people but showing God's love to them in a real and practical way at one of the worst times in their lives. Without that goal we would have no direction and God's will would not be done.

As you can see, the speaker really touched my heart this evening and I am so thankful to Tim for giving us the tickets.

The conclusion to this evening is in the 3 S's.
1. Something! everyone can do something! Every little bit adds up and there is no one out there who is unable to do something! No one!

2. Stretch! We are to stretch ourselves beyond our comfort zones, beyond anything we have been doing or planned to do. There are the blessings!

3. Seed! We cannot make any withdrawals from God's bank of blessings unless we have made deposits! Plain and simple!

Tomorrow is yet another day we take another leap of faith and pray God will use the both of us to show His love! It would be easy to be back home, working our jobs each day for set hours, having a steady income, being able to commune with our friends and family whenever we wanted to.... What we are doing is not the easy way --- it is God's way. He doesn't tell us the way will be easy --- He tells us He will be with us all the way! Monty and I believe that promise and thank all of you who have joined with us in supporting us, realizing that everyone can do something, that the capabilities are endless, praying us through the conflicts and commiting yourselves to helping us!

If you are reading this and feel there is something you can do to help support us in this mission you can send your tax deductible gifts to us through: Vineyard Community Church at PO Box 3277 in Bloomington, Indiana 47403. God bless you for also making a step out in faith! The lives of the people of Mississippi are forever being changed thanks to you!!!!!!

Until tomorrow ... God loves you, don't forget it! Susan and Monty

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