Friday, April 18, 2008

Home Visits

The Coleman house is nearing completion as you can see by the bottom right photo. This team has been installing the laminate flooring and when we stopped by yesterday they were saddened that they would have to leave with the house not done -- something we try and prepare each team for. In our society we are made to feel "less than" if we don't finish what we start. That is not the case here on the coast and it's still something difficult for teams to deal with. But each team brings the homeowner one step closer to getting finished and moved in. THAT is what they need to concentrate on! We are really thankful to the Presbytarians for taking on this home and being dedicated to completing it.
The other photos were taken at Robin's home. It is being gutted and then will also be taken to completion, over a period of time. David and his teams will be concentrating on Robin's home throughout the summer and doing what they can to get her back home. Once again, we are so thankful to all these relief efforts who lay aside any names or denominations and just step up to do what needs to be done, to follow God's calling to just help the people!
Monty and I spent last evening with a home visit to one of the employees of the local shipyard. Jackie and his family are just doing what they can to keep their heads above water -- literally.
Jackie works full time and takes any overtime he can catch. His wife cares for their 5 grandchildren full time along with her 89 year old aunt who suffers from Alzheimers. Jackie built their home about 25 years ago and has put his heart and soul into it. When the storm came along it blew off so many shingles that he has spent any spare time he has in patching the roof. Each time he patches there springs another leak and he patches again. He isn't asking for anything else, just a roof. And guess what --- we are going to do what we can to get him a roof --one that does not leak! Please keep them in your prayers. They are just like thousands of others who just want a safe, sanitary and secure home to raise their family in.
Our next visits were today. This morning we visited James and his wife. They were renters at the time of the storm and lived in their car and then a tent until FEMA put them in a trailer -- located an hour away from his job at the shipyard! That trailer park was so unsafe that they requested to be moved, and they were, but it was just as bad. He stepped out and purchased a home that was damaged in the storm but have been trying to do what they can to just keep a safe home for their 3 children to live in. One child has severe allergies and the medical expenses alone are outstanding for them. He works days and she works nights and they are also doing the best they can. This home also needs a roof as it is leaking and causing mold. This creates an atmosphere unsafe for anyone, let alone a child with such an illness. The electricity on the back side of the house also isn't working. They don't even have pots and pans to cook with but are doing the best they can. More prayers!!!
Our next visit was to Gale. She also works at the shipyard painting ships and taking as much overtime as she can take. She is raising her son and putting her home back together with whatever means she can. She has done a wonderful job but has hit the point where her abilities and funds have run dry and the only thing she needs is the bathroom done. She has managed to get the materials needed and now needs the labor to get it done. We hope to tap into other relief effort teams and get the bathroom done. I found myself in deep admiration when I saw just how hard she is working and a woman in the world all alone. She took pride in telling us she did all the painting inside the house! She might paint ships day and night but she still found time to paint her entire house!
My prayer is that you will see what we see when we visit these people who have lost sooooo much. They aren't looking for a hand-out, they just need a hand-up! They are so tired of being judged, being put under a microscope, being run down, being ripped off ---- they just want a home!
As we continue to receive calls for help, as we continue to make the home visits, as we continue to praise our volunteers for doing what they do --- let us NEVER forget that this is our own backyard --- this is our neighbor --- this is someplace where 100% of us could drive to if need be --- "these people" could very easily be US next time!!!
Pray for each person we meet, each person we try and help and each life that when they see us they see Jesus!!! Pray that we carry His love with us into every life we touch!
Until next time . . . Susan and Monty

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