Monday, October 30, 2017

Habitat For Humanity Build #9: Mandeville, Louisiana

We just finished up another two week Care-A-Vanner build with the Habitat For Humanity affiliate in Mandeville, Louisiana. This affiliate usually has three to five houses in various stages of construction, so we quickly learned to be open to any type of work during our time there.

During each Habitat build, Doug and I often discuss what type of work we like best. This time we got to work on the two homes that were in the final stages of construction. The work on these involved completing stairs and decking, building fences, touch-up painting and lots of clean up ... something in each of our skill sets!

During two days of our build, we moved to a site with a house in the early stages of construction. This third house was going to require far more carpentry magic than I possess, and I had to fight the feeling that I lack the talents and skills needed to contribute to the end product.

But one day as I was cleaning the months of construction grime off the windows, I had some time to think ... lots of time as it took me two days to remove the layers of drywall mud, manufacturer's stickers, paint splatters and remnants of spray foam insulation gone bad.

And in the end, what joy to see the bright Louisiana sunshine glow through the shiny clean windows and reflect off the shiny clean tile floors!

As I worked, I thought about how God is also busy removing the grime that may build up in each of us. He allows us to use our talents to let our light shine forth as we successfully complete whatever task we are given on the Habitat build.

Our Light Shines ...

... When two engineers work together to complete an
"over-designed" and "way over-thought" set of stairs!

... When two conscientious women search out and
cover up all the white splatters on the dark siding
because "we want it to look nice"!

... When team leader Cherilyn patiently
teaches us about power tools, 

... while team leader Joe knows who needs
"just a little closer supervision" as they lay concrete!

... When a step is "added to the construction plan"
by volunteer Mike in order to make access
to the shed safer for the future homeowner!

... When these two newbies tackle the task
of marking the studs in order to facilitate the nailing of the siding,
and leave behind a few kisses and hugs!

... When the enthusiasm for cleaning the floors
brings out the song and dance,

... and finding a cleaning bucket becomes
a playful game of tug-of-war!

And Our Light Shines in the Smiles of the Future Homeowners ... 

... Anticipating making Christmas dinner
in her new kitchen!

... Looking forward to
"catching the bus" from their new front porch!
... Planning to give her teenage niece
a stable home with a "room of her own"!

A Habitat build can be difficult at times, but by letting our light shine, we help bring that dream of a peaceful home closer to reality for so many deserving families!

Until next time ... let your light shine ... and enjoy the adventures in your life!

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