Wednesday, February 28, 2007
The work at Dane's and Rosemary's also continued at break neck speed. The tiling is completed at Dane's. They are working on finishing the grouting and sealing with 3 coats. It looks so nice, the shine looks like you are walking on water. At 10 feet in the air you just might be!
Rosemary should be primed and painted by the time this team leaves Sunday morning. Another amazing feat!
Diane also made it back this evening. Her trip was very long and not without incident. She was nearing Mobile, Alabama when they closed the interstate due to a fire in the median of the interstate. After being rerouted over 70 miles out of the way she finally made it back on her original route and here early evening. Please keep her in your prayers as she came back not feeling well. The cold, snowy wintery weather (along with a bunch of sick people) got to her and she needs some healing prayers.
Speaking of prayers, good news on the NC teams hometown. The little girl who was sick last night is doing much better, no contagious diseases! Thank you for your prayers.
Our friend Joe called this evening. It seems his mother is barely hanging on, still labored breathing. He had to end the call because she was having trouble. Please continue your prayers.
We also have another friend from home, Kevin. He is in a custody situation in regard to his young daughter and could also use some supportive prayers. He worships his little girl and everyone involved could use prayer.
I spent much of my days inside Lowes. We are getting things ready for the foundation work at Mike and Faye's next week. Trying to tie things together between here and WV can sure get interesting! To say the least!!!!
Thank you for the blessing of your prayers. Without them this mission could not happen!!
Until tomorrow .... Susan and Monty
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
Monday, February 26, 2007
Sunday, February 25, 2007
Our NC team took off after church for an afternoon of traveling along the coast, heading west. They will most likely be speechless when they return, just like the other thousands upon thousands that have made that same trip.
They are following in the footsteps of so many volunteers who come to help. They are antsy, anxious, filled with thousands of questions and ready to rebuild the coast in an afternoon. What they don't know is that by the end of their week here they will have changed lives forever, both those whom they have touched here and their own. It is our prayer that they take these "heart moments" back home with them, share them with their families, friends, neighbors, church members and everyone they meet. This is ministry. This is following Jesus!
Some of you have asked Monty and I if we are thinking of coming home since our year commitment has come and gone. You might wonder why we would still be here, why would we be agreeing to relocate into the heart of the 9th ward of New Orleans in a few months? Our answer is simple -- where else would we be? How could we sit at home in our recliners when there are so many people hurting and needing help? We are living a dream, following God's call on your life is exactly that -- living a dream. This calling has the ability to save lives -- both physically, emotionally and spiritually. It's NOT Monty and I that are doing this --- it's GOD and only GOD! It is He that is working through us, and through all the volunteers who come to help! This is real, this isn't something you see on TV, it's real life, it's real service, it's real miracles --- all on a daily basis. Once again we both would like to thank ALL who have come here to be God's hands and feet, all who have become an extension of our family, all who have followed Jesus and walked among the hurting as He did! May God bless all of you!
Until tomorrow -- where we have the chance to get up and do it all over again --- and change the world --- into a better place! Susan and Monty
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Hometown went home this morning - and left a big hole in our hearts! What an uplifting week for Monty and I and we thank all of them for everything they did! Our hope is that you all will return as soon as possible. And one thing we know -- it wasn't quite as warm when you got home as when you left here!! :)
We did have a few hours to get things arranged and take a break before our team from North Carolina arrived. There are 10 of them now with 4 more arriving Wednesday morning sometime. They are all very anxious to get to work. A few of them were in Slidell, Louisiana this time last year so they are "seasoned" to a certain extent. The others will be just that within a couple of days. The balance of this team swings more to women -- girl power at its finest! It will be a great week. They will be divided between Dane's and Rosemary's and by the end of the week both of these homes should be the next thing to done!
Monty got an update on our friend Joe at home. His mother is no better and is "hanging on" in his words. Once again, please continue your prayers for this entire family.
Mike was back in ER last night after I had already done the blog. His foot had started bleeding so they went back and they were going to rebandage it. I'm going on the no news is good news for today. I'm sure I'll see Faye at church in the morning. FYI to all who know her-----her birthday is this FRIDAY and she is quite excited! If you don't have her current address and would like it to send a card just give me a call and I'll be happy to share it with you. She would LOVE to hear from you!
Don't forget to thank God for all your blessings when you go to church tomorrow! He is amazing, isn't He.
Until tomorrow .... Susan and Monty
Friday, February 23, 2007
Today we topped the record high at 75 degrees and full sunshine! It was awesome!
The entire team was up and having devotions before 7:00 am this morning. They wanted to get an early start as they were working till 1:00 pm and then heading to New Orleans for the afternoon and evening. We always encourage teams to do some traveling to our west to really get a full sense of the damage that was done by the storm. Even after nearly 18 months to the day it will still leave you speechless. I have not seen the men since they returned but Monty is in with them now and I can only imagine their versions of what they experienced!
The crew in Jim and Cindy's house finished hanging the sheetrock today. There are still some structural changes that Jim wants to make so we could only do so much until they are ready for us again. They did a wonderful job, some of the best sheetrock hanging we have seen!
The men laying floor tile at Dane's are now grouting what they had already put down. They cross they put in the hallway is stunning! They will be returning tomorrow to clean the grout and get the first coat of sealer on what is already down. The incoming team from NC who will be here next week will be picking up where these men left off.
At Rosemary's they are nearly complete with the finishing of the sheetrock. They still have work for tomorrow and the NC team will also be going in and following up with priming, painting and hanging of doors. And just like the rest of the team, this work is great! Too bad we can't keep this entire team for awhile longer --- I think I say that each week and God always sends us another great team and the process repeats itself! One of those "God things" for certain!
Our builder for Mike and Faye's house, Joe, was going to fly in tomorrow for some preliminary ground work but had a change of plans. He is changing the way the foundation will be done and didn't need to make the trip. Instead of pouring for footers he will be making pylons from treated lumber. It's alot more cost effective and takes less time. Monty will be at the site tomorrow doing some tree removal and ground clean up. Our electrician, Art, has been kind enough to find someone to donate a trackhoe for our use tomorrow so alot will get done. Monty is an equipment operator and is really looking forward to "working" (playing??) :)
Everything else for their home is coming together. We have a meeting with the city building official tomorrow and Joe will join us via speaker phone. Isn't technology wonderful when you need it!
Monty and I attended our mission class this evening and as always, we had the pleasure of listening to a couple who spent 20 years in the mission field and shared some of their knowledge. Even though we drive an hour each way to attend these classes the time just flies by and we are learning such wonderful and valuable information. And we're getting better at the homework also!!??
PS A note to Jeremy's PO ---- he's an amazing young man and we thank you for making it possible for him to be here with us. God is sending him back home a different and improved man!!
Until tomorrow ... don't forget your prayers! Susan and Monty
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Monday, February 19, 2007
Sunday, February 18, 2007
They will be quite busy this week. They will divide themselves into 3 groups working on 3 different jobs, well -- actually 4. Some will be going to Rosemary's to start finishing the sheetrock. Another group will be going to Jim and Cindy's to install insulation and hopefully start hanging sheetrock before the week is through. Yet another group will be going to Dane's to install his ceramic flooring. A few of them let the cat out of the bag that they have done ceramic flooring before so they were "elected" and Dane will be getting his flooring done. He was quite surprised when we called him this evening! Since tomorrow is a holiday Dane will be off work and right there with the men working. And of course, we will be sure and throw in a couple of surprises here and there just to keep them guessing! :)
This mornings church service was really "alive". Pastor Rick had an awesome message, one just for Monty and I. Did you ever think that we magnify what we meditate on?! What do you think our life would be like if we kept our eyes fixed on Jesus? What if we focused on the healer of our diseases instead of the disease? Alot of food for thought isn't it?
Think on those things as we are blessed to be starting a new week -- a week filled with blessings and surprises and with the promise that whatever we do, wherever we are -- Jesus will be with us -- He promised and He keeps His promises!!
Until tomorrow ..... Susan and Monty
Saturday, February 17, 2007
Here they are, Leroy sporting his Flintstone shirt and Pastor Curt and Darrell all smiles. Yes, they left us very early this morning and are home with family once again this evening. We will miss them as will Maury and Rosemary. They did such a wonderful job completing the hanging of the sheetrock and having it ready for the finishing process hopefully this week! Enjoy your families and come back and see us again!
We also had 2 of our 3 Habitat for Humanity parking lot residents leave this afternoon. They were being relocated elsewhere but we hope to also meet up with them sometime in the future. We got used to having neighbors and it seems quite barren again. Although we hear that a couple of our month long volunteers will be returning to our back yard living in a couple of weeks. Greg and Pam, from South Dakota will be returning for the month of March and we look forward to having them back for the entire month! They will be more than busy and awesome blessings while they are here!
It seems the entire coastal community is rallying around Mardi Gras this weekend. There are parades in nearly every city. It's something new for us! "Fat Tuesday" is this Tuesday, the day before Ash Wednesday. Schools are closed for Monday and Tuesday along with numerous businesses. Like I said, it's something very new, and different, for us. I must say the colors of purple, green and gold are used in just about every capacity you can imagine.
Our hometown team will be heading out around 5AM tomorrow morning. We pray for safe travel and good weather for the nearly 800 miles they will be traveling. Atleast we can be certain that the weather here is quite ALOT warmer than what they have been experiencing over the past few weeks! It is forecast to be in the 60s with partial sunshine!!
Monty and I have a special prayer request this evening. You've heard about our dearest and best friend Joe and his mothers health issues. The doctors have put a pace maker in her chest to regulate her heartbeating. We pray this will take care of many of her health problems and improve her over all health in a miraculous way. Both she (Josephine) and Joe could use your prayers for strength, healing and support. Thank you. This is just another of those times where being so far from home is difficult.
Until tomorrow .... God's blessings to all. Please attend your local church tomorrow morning and thank God for all your blessings! Susan and Monty
Friday, February 16, 2007
Yes, it requires many different bends, stretches and reaches to hang sheetrock in a home. And our Wisconsin men managed to do anything needed to get the job done.