“We write this to make our joy complete.” 1 John 1:4
Last week we had the privilege of following-up and spending time
with Amanda, who was the recipient of the first Foundation home. In
typical, human, self-centered planning we had anticipated spending
the time we had learning about how she uses her new home, if there
are any challenges with transitioning to a new space, and
improvements we can make to future builds. Amanda greeted us with
hugs and enthusiastically ushered us into her home which she clearly
takes great pride in.
Amanda shared how she has strict rules for her four children about not leaving personal items laying around and everything was in its proper place. Clothes were hung with care in a make-shift closet (string hung in an open corner) and dishes were neatly kept in the kitchen cabinet. She beamed about the recently hung curtains she had saved for and talked of future plans of adding additional cabinets in the kitchen. The youngest daughter loves the bathroom and we were told spends significant time there, claiming it as her space. Overall, the kids now spend more time at home often bring their friends over to play. Amanda’s youngest son we’re told, is quick to tell anyone who asks that the house came from God.
Amanda explained that when the build began she thought she was receiving the same style home we were aiming to get the family out of (made of scrap metal). To her surprise, the end result was much different than she had anticipated. How true is that of God’s mercy and grace in our lives – His plan is always bigger than our own! As she shared her experience we quickly began to see how the Lord was steering not only the build but even the selection process.
We learned a week prior to our first Foundation build trip that the initial family selected couldn’t get a title for the parcel of land where we were set to build their home (this is a requirement in our process). The team had to scramble for a replacement family. While this was happening, Amanda was dealing with a life-threatening illness due to a chemical spill at the plant where she found work for the day. She was so sick, local doctors didn’t believe she was going to make it. By the grace of God she recovered but not without significant medical bills and high costs for medication to help heal her lungs. Discouraged by having to spend her savings (which was for a refrigerator) but healing, Amanda was unaware that God had set his sights on her and had bigger plans. A few days after she got out of the hospital, staff from our ministry partner shared the news that she and her children would be receiving a new home.
The family is thriving in their house and while there are many challenges they will still face, they have been empowered by God’s goodness, recognizing His hand in their lives. Amanda is now focused on creating income to support her family and wants to continue her education to one day become a teacher. She has started a business selling homemade coasters and centerpieces out of old t-shirts with the goal to give a portion of the funds to help others in need of a home. Amanda also plans to help fix up her former house which her brother who didn’t have a place to live, now calls home.
Praise be to God for showing his unending mercy and lifting us up when we most need it. May we continually be sensitive to His calling and never hesitate to step out in faith. We give Him all the glory and thanks for allowing us to have a small part in this impactful ministry. Please continue to pray for Amanda and her family as they grow in their faith and strive to be a light in their community.
“With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may make you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may bring to fruition your every desire for goodness and your every deed prompted by faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.” ~ 1 Thessalonians 1:11-12