Thursday, March 09, 2006

The house painters

I started this primarily to allow our church, family and friends to keep tabs on us. However, some of the folks here may also be looking at it. I just wanted to say that my remarks are from an outside perspective and I may get a few things wrong -- I hope if that happens you will talk to me so I can correct any errors in fact or perception.

This post is primarily about the house we are painting. There are a "million stories" in this city and it would be impossible to write about them all but I will try to share some of them as time goes on --

With the college kids here the facilities are overloaded so we are continuing to feed ourselves breakfast and are making our own lunches and taking them with us to the “house” . We are getting there between 8 & 8:30 most days depending on how fast we can line up a ride. We are getting back between 5 & 5:30 and taking 30 to 45 minutes for lunch so for us it is a relatively long day. We have usually crashed when we got back and a couple of nights Linda has been too wiped to make it to services- I’ve been every night so far. I should say that Linda has been working on more physically demanding things doing trim which requires a steady hand and climbing up and down the ladder. I have had to spend a lot of time supervising the "kids" -- arranging supplies, etc. I also took a probably an hour in total to listen to the story of the family that we are helping. This is as important to these hurting people as the physiscal help.

Monday Neal Alligood spoke again –on serving using the example of Jesus washing the disciples feet. For more info on the group Neal is with see Campus Christian Fellelowship website (

Tuesday night the speaker was Al Sturgeon the preacher at the church in Ocean Springs. The following quote is from John Dobbs journal ( (John is the preacher here at Central – I’ll tell more about him in a later entry) “what a powerful message he brought! As a hurricane victim and hurricane relief worker, his testimony touched us all. He challenged us to live each day with the compassion of Christ and the willingness to serve others.”
Note- if you want to get more info on the work here and especially the blend of physical and spiritual help that is being provided I'd encourage you to track John's daily entry. I took this picture from his entry for Sunday (A good day) It Linda and I with Elwyn and Terry. They are from California and there is a story there I hope to get to this weekend.

OK- back to the ongoing saga of the erstwhile house painters.

If you look at the outside picture of the house from the earlier posting it may help you with following this description. The house has a large foyer/ entrance located about halfway back on the side of the main part of the house. There is a hallway off the entrance that goes down the middle from living room to bedrooms. At the back of the house is the living room, dining room and kitchen. Off the kitchen is a family room in behind the 2 car garage. There are two good sized bedrooms off one side of the hall. On the other side is the main bathroom and the master bedroom with an ensuite bath. You can see this is a good sized house .

As I mentioned before John (the owner’s son) was working with contractors to get the house ready for his parents. We are dealing with the entry/hallway, 3 bedrooms, LR and DR. The remaining rooms are either being left as is except for main bath which a contractor is rebuilding to put in an invalid shower for the father who is fairly crippled (using a walker) Before getting hurt the son had torn out the plaster up to 4 ft level and replaced with new sheetrock, replaced all the trim. He had a contractor do the taping, mudding and sanding and the new walls had been spray primed In LR & DR they had sprayed an “orange peel” texture top to bottom

When we came John (the owner’s son) told us it was “ready to paint”. A quick inspection showed otherwise since several of the bedrooms needed a lot of sanding on the original (top half) of the walls especially where there had been wallpaper removed.

As we started painting when found that the contractor who had done the taping and mudding had done a very poor job and many of the joints the paper was showing through. (It could be the pressure of too much to do and trying to help everyone that is leading to short cuts -- I don'tknow but the results were not good!!) .We just left those areas unpainted and talked to John about it. When (another) contractor) came to work on the bathroom we had him touch up some of the worst spots. Unfortunately, we had some others painting (more about that later) and some spots that needed touching up were al ready painted so we are going to need to redo a fair bit of those rooms.

Since Saturday Linda has been painting trim full time and it is getting to her shoulders. It is 7 Wednesday a.m as I write this part and I’m letting her sleep since she was up in the night taking ibuprofen for her shoulders and didn’t sleep well.

Look at John Dobb's site for a description of a neat event that happened following last night's service. We also had a chance to listen to the story of a (relatively) young man who had been crushed by additions, lost his family and had come here looking for clothes. David Kilbern befriended him, found him work and he is solidly back on the road to recovery with God as his lamp and strength -- he like so many is on a journey that ultimately only a relationship with God through Jesus can really make the difference.

Pray for these people and pray for us that we can minister in a way that shares the hope that we have.

God Bless
Charlie & Linda

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