Imagine, for a moment, a small 2 room shack; each room only measures 10′ x 10′. One room serves as kitchen, dining room, and family room; the other a bedroom, complete with only a full size bed and mats on the ground. There is no electricity or indoor plumbing. There is no carpet, linoleum, or wood flooring – only packed dirt. Clean water is kept in large cistern outside the house, which is refilled when they can afford it. There are no radios, TVs, computers.
oh yeah, and there are nine people living in this house.
This is the situation i found in Reynosa; the home of a local pastor. Yet, the family smiled, laughed, and showed true hospitality. They have so much less than we do here in America, yet they truly seemed to have more gratitude and contentment. They live a life where they depend 100% on the Lord to provide their basic needs.
They did not ask for help, yet we felt led to bless Pastor Victor and his family. We saw the cramped living conditions and wanted to give them extra room. The result: a simple one-room wooden house with a loft. They’re inexpensive (only about $2500), quick (3-days to build), and simple (nothing extravagant), but they are a huge blessing to families who currently live in makeshift homes built by random pieces of scrap wood, metal, and tarps.
Unfortunately, we were not able to get started on Tuesday, so I was only there for the first 2 days of construction and, thus, not able to see the final product. However, I was able to stay through most of it except the final touches of trimwork and the loft.
Eventually, Pastor Victor and his family are going to move their current home piece-by-piece and rebuild it behind the one we made because they “want the prettier house to be seen”. Amazing… what we in America would find to be inadequate, they find to be a perfect gift from God.
I have made a slide presentation of pictures from the trip. Other than Pastor Victor’s house, you will also see other houses from the same “colonia” – a colony. Usually these colonies settle on a piece of land and begin building on it, eventually creating a colonia. This colonia is right near the U.S./Mexico border; probably started from migrants who came north to try and get into America. You will also see pictures of our building process. As soon as one of my fellow missionaries sends me a picture of the completed house I will post it here for your. You can view the slideshow by clicking on “Mexico 2008” under the heading “Photos” on the left side of our blog; or you can click HERE.
Thank you for all your prayers while I was on this trip. Many of you, i’m sure, were aware that there was gunfighting and riots in Reynosa the week I was there. At first we weren’t sure if it would hinder our ministry, but by God’s grace, we were okay and unaffected.