Sunday, November 18, 2007

Long Awaited Update

I've been quite a stranger lately, so I better fill you in on what's going on here in Mississippi. We had a couple weeks in late October that were crazy. We had 60 volunteers one week and 90 the next week. Becca, Dan, and I were a bit burned out after those weeks and were in need of a break. Thankfully we didn't have any volunteers the next week so we were able to relax a bit and get caught up on things.

Recently we had two really great groups of volunteers here. I really enjoyed getting to know the groups and it was nice to have smaller groups here because we could actually get to know the volunteers a little better than when we have tons of people here.

There is still a definite need here and it still surprises me going into houses that are down to just the studs and still in need of drywall, flooring, and basically a lot of work. The other day, Becca and I went on our usual Walmart run. A lady who was working there giving out samples seemed a little shocked to see Becca and I wearing our Presbyterian Disaster Assistance shirts and she said, "You're still here." She was an incredibly sweet lady and she thanked us repeatedly for still being here to help rebuild. It definitely made my day to see her face light up at the sight of our t-shirts.

I've been reading the book "Blue Like Jazz" lately and one major theme that has really stuck out to me is the theme of humility and being real and authentic with people. It can be really easy to sit on our soap box of we are so great to be down here helping out on the Gulf Coast. But none of this is about getting attention for being here and helping out. We are no better than any of the home owners that we interact with. We are here to serve the people here not with big signs saying, 'look at the great things we are doing,' but rather just serving the people here. What an amazing challenge to have such an attitude of service and humility.