Tuesday, November 07, 2006

New Jersey rolls into day 2

The top 4 photos were taken at Virgil's house. You can see the insulation and sheetrock going in and the house taking shape. They got the new subfloor put in the entryway, the last of the subflooring to be done. The pieces for the bathroom have been cut but will not be put in place permanently until some plumbing has been taken care of. The women are really into the job, you can see by the one who is operating the screw gun installing the sheetrock on the ceiling. Working overhead like that isn't easy but this team is having a blast!

The bottom 4 photos are at Sharon and Wendell's. They also are putting in insulation and sheetrock. The old flooring is being removed in the last photo on the left. This is a tough job but he is getting it done and having the time of his life. Wendell was able to line out the jobs for them today, one of which was installing new windows. The women were really into the whole project, which is wonderful to see. Too many times women feel there is no place for them on a construction job -- WRONG! There is a place for everyone and there is nothing a man can do that a woman can't; she just might have to use 2 hands instead of one! :)

I want to quote parts of what we used for our opening devotion this morning. The paper was sent to us by our dear friend, Cathy, from home. It is so extremely appropriate, and right on the money, that I want you to be able to read it and give it some thought.

"Almost nothing makes friends faster and deeper than helping someone in their time of need. The Holy Spirit is the Helper, and if we are really Spririt filled people we will be there for our neighbors to help in their time of need. This is the true ministry of "helps" to be able and willing to respond to those who cry "help!" Even some of the most radical Muslims in the world started to esteem Christians in a whole new way after the tsunami disaster in Indonesia because of the way they were helped by Christian relief agencies. When someone helps you or your family thorugh a crisis, there is an appreciation and often a bonding that goes deeper than could ever happen otherwise.

This ministry of helps that arises within the church is also going to help the church more than any other ministry project in history. It will mobilize and energize the lives of Christians like few things have ever done before. There is a fulfillment and saatisfaction that comes from helping others in a desperate time of need that can change the life of the one who helps as well. This will begin to deliver many believers from the spiritual apathy and lukewarmness that has gripped them. Souls will be saved, and teachers and pastors will be raised up to take care of them and establish them on a solid foundation. Churches will swell in numbers so fast that it is going to be extremely hard to keep up with the growth."

Some pretty strong words and sheer truth. We have seen evidence of this happening already. The bonds made between the homeowners and those volunteers who come to help them are stronger than you can imagine. Both are knit together in a bond that I believe can be stronger than blood related family ties. And the churches are beginning to see the big picture, realizing where they need to step up and how and why. God is moving all along this coast. The quote that is so appropriate is: "Hurricane Katrina brought about the best and the worst in our nation"

I also discovered that the very word Katrina means to cleanse or make clean. That will be the ultimate result of this storm. This gulf coast was hit by a mega storm and is still in a state of almost unimaginable devastation and depression. Even though the refuse of the storm has been mostly cleaned up, the emptiness is palpable! That WILL change! It will be turned into good, and the same region will be the source of one of the great revivals in history! It will be a spiritual jubilee, setting many captives FREE!

Make sure you are a part of this! Become a part, if you aren't already! If you are, hang on for the ride of your life! Like I said, God is moving all along this coast and Monty and I are so extremely blessed to be a part of it! Thank you to all of you who make it possible for us to be here and thanks to ALL of the relief efforts who have come and helped and to those who are still here for the duration. Thank you, Convoy of Hope, for bringing us into this wonderful organization. And most of all, thank you to our family and home church, Vineyard Community Church back home who continue to support us with your prayers and make it possible for us to be here, allowing God to work through us each and every day!

Until tomorrow ..... Susan and Monty

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