Mission to Kentucky

By Helen Guilford

Seven hardy souls and I went on a mission trip to Kentucky. We didn’t know what we would be doing so took clothing which would be appropriate for either indoor or outdoor work. We would have only four work days and perhaps that makes you question the value of such a trip.

When we arrived, we were told we were building a new house! Now, that’s different. We have always plugged into improving the status of an existing home.

This young mother of two who lived in a mobile home had made application for necessary repairs. However, when the situation was evaluated in person by Christian Appalachian Project (CAP), it was found to be well beyond repair. So they took down what remained of the mobile home and started with a new foundation.

While this demolition and reconstruction is in progress, the family is crowded in with the grandmother who lives up the road a ways.

When we arrived, the shell of the house was already built and stud walls for rooms were in place. Half-inch drywall and stacks of insulation covered the floor. That pretty well defined our first day’s work – getting the insulation into the walls so we could begin work on hanging drywall. Everybody pitched in to do whatever was needed.

And so it went. All on the mission team worked at whatever was needed not only on that first day, but all four days. By the time we left to come home the insulation and drywall were in place!

Though a lot of work still needs to be done and the family is still crowded in with grandma, they displayed joy and hope as progress was made. This is a three-bedroom home and the rooms are small, but just imagine moving into a new home after living in a mobile home with such holes in the floor that it was beyond repair. I wish you could have seen the seven-year-old girl display her joy at the promise of having a room of her own.

Now, they hope to be in the new home by Christmas because the way CAP works is to keep other projects going along with the one getting the attention that week. So, this young family will now watch nothing happen at their building site for a while, but they have renewed hope. And hope is vital to all of us.

So, we’re back home and the family we worked with and for is still with grandma, was the trip worth it? As I said, I wish you could have seen the little girl whirl and twirl in her new room!

Hopefully, someday they will look back on the work accomplished by volunteers as a vital part of their lives. I know those of us who went will remember the week.

Yes, it was worth the time and money expended in their behalf. Not only that, with the team numbering only eight, evening team meetings gave opportunity for reflection individually and as a group as to just what this has meant in our individual lives.

The love of God was displayed throughout the ministry. The young mother who is still in recovery from a critical auto accident now has hope of seeing her two children in a new, safe, warm home.

There are many ways to display God’s love. This was one of them. How do you show His love to others? Jesus died for you and me (and those living in irreparable motile homes), so let’s be sure to share His great love with others.

By Helen Guilford