Today we started our projects at the Home of Love. Over the course of the next week and a half the team will be painting one of the school's building and the front gate, as well as preparing the property for the new wall that will be built over the next few months.
The sun was bright today as we all put on our paint shirts and work gloves. Most of us are becoming accustomed to the heat; the key has been staying hydrated. We primed most of the building today and painted the front gate. Everyone worked hard for the Lord and some of His wonderful daughter's today. The before and after pictures of the building, gate, and wall are sure to be shocking.
The team works really well together. We laugh and joke together knowing that the bonds we form here are truly unique and life-long. We pushed through our fatigue with kind words of encouragement from one another. God has been faithful with answering our prayers for team unity.
We broke out the paint and were pleased with the color combination chosen by our more artistic team members. What was once a flaking dirty pastel yellow will be replaced by an olive green base with white and red accents. Approximately half of the building was painted just today! We were all more productive than anticipated.
We were faced with the difficulty of the leaking water tank on the roof. The water has caused a lot of damage to the wall and the tank. A thick layer of residue kept us from priming and painting a large section of one of the walls. The leaders decided to call a contractor to see what could be done about the water damage.
Aside from that minor set back, the team tackled the day's tasks with gumption. We were a well oiled body of Christ! The wall that had yet to be primed was scraped and sanded to remove the flaking coat of the previous paint. Hopefully the process will allow for the new paint to last longer and look better.
The gate received a second coat today and the Home of Love logo was painted on the adjacent wall. It is really shaping up! Those who worked on the fence/wall today were exceptionally brave. The fence that is currently protecting the property has to be moved back so the wall can go in its place. A few team members sustained minor cuts from the barbed wire that was moved. The cuts were cleaned and the team members were diligent and went right back to work.
After we finished work for the day, we spent some quality time with the girls. Bart and Missy taught the girls how to play Sardines today; they got a kick out of it! The older girls really enjoy visiting with us. They like to ask about our homes and our families, and tell us about their dreams and where they've come from. Some of my most extraordinary moments from this trip have come from talking with these girls.
The day left all of us wiped out. Some of the team went out to dinner and some chose to stay in, snack, and rest. There will be lots of work to do tomorrow.
The team has been doing devotions together every morning when we get to the Home of Love (HOL). After we spend some time worshiping we dive into the Word and discuss how it impacts not only our time here in India, but also back in the States. We are currently studying James and really appreciate how straight-forward it is while also trying to implement the challenges of 'faith with action' from the text.
The team continued to paint the building and the smaller fixtures (signs, railings, doors, windows). The colors have come together so well! The front of the building is nearly done, but the putty on all of the window sills has rotted out, so we are scraping it and replacing it.
Today in particular was a little harder than the two previous days, mostly because the team was really worn out from work and playing with the girls. We have really come to appreciate those who do manual labor as their trade! The fatigue caused spirits to be low and some tensions and frustrations. At the end of the day, each of us could recognize the factors at play, and come to an understanding and peace.
After we were done with work for the day, there was an incredible thunderstorm today that pushed us into the big pavilion. We made the best of it and sang worship songs and danced around. A lot of the little girls fell asleep during the storm. They are such precious gifts!
We are excited to see the finished product and hope to serve the girls in anyway we can with the time we have left.