Monday, August 21, 2006

Houston Photo Night

Here is our Houston weekend!

It was incredible and filled with so many blessings!

We arrived back safely this afternoon, after coming through one of the worst rainstorms I have ever driven through! But God protected us and we are now back "home".

As you can see by the first photos, we did get to go to Lakewood Church on Saturday night and what an experience that was! Being there was unreal and an enormous blessing! Having our picture taken with Pastor Joel Osteen was amazing and we thank him for taking the time to meet and talk with us.

The next photos are of Plum Grove Assembly of God church where we spoke on Sunday morning. The group is the team of volunteers that will be coming to work with us in 2 weeks. It will be such a wonderful blessing to those here. This team is taking time away from their regular duties, their families and their familiar surroundings to come and bless those who need help in getting their lives and homes rebuilt. When God touches the hearts of people such as these volunteers He also sends them back home filled with their own blessings. We are so thankful to Pastor Parker and his church for inviting us, for taking care of us so nicely, and for planning this trip. It was a wonderful weekend filled with so many blessings and we are so thankful!

The second to last photo was taken as we drove into the city of Houston. It's huge and the roads create a "spaghetti bowl" unlike anything I have ever seen before. It took more than one map but we did figure our way to and from the places we needed to be! A miracle for sure!

There was a bit of sadness when we returned "home" today. Today was the day Diane was going home! She will be returning in a month but to come back and not have her here waiting for us just doesn't feel right. She has been here since February and we haven't known life at The Refuge without her! She flew home to be there for her daughter as she is about to give birth to Diane's grandchild. We don't know if it's a boy or girl but as soon as she does know I will let all of you know! Please keep this entire family in your prayers. Diane has such a heart for this relief effort here and she has been here for so long that being back in the "real world" will seem more than a bit strange! She will be returning in a month, for another month of service. We know she needs to be home at this time and even though we miss her we know she will be back with us again soon. We also want to send a special thank you to her for keeping our dogs this past weekend! Without her doing that we would not have been able to make the trip! We love you, Diane and will be talking with you soon!

We thank all of you for being with us on this mission. We thank Convoy of Hope for allowing us to serve through them. We thank our home church, The Vineyard, for everything they do for us! (we hear that our lawn at home looks better than when we were there) :) and we thank you, the reader, for your prayers and for reading and keeping up with the reality of what is happening down here on the coast! There will be renewed news in the next few days since the one year anniversary of Katrina is approaching. Our prayer is that the news will show the reality, tell it like it is and be an encouragement to others that help is still needed! The job is NOT done and it is NOT all okay yet! Thank you for doing what you do to keep the mission going!

Until tomorrow .... Susan and Monty

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