Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Denham Springs: Cindy

Our first assignment was to assist a lady named Cindy. Cindy's home is in a Suburb called Denham Springs. In this area 87% of homes and 90% of businesses were damaged- most of which ended up with around 3 feet of water. 
It is overwhelming to drive down the streets. Every bulding has piles of belongings, furnature, flooring, and insulation lining the curb. Some piles are over 6 feet high. 

Cindy is a photographer, and her husband works for the city. Because of this Cindy has been home alone much of the last 2 weeks, while her husband is out helping others. Because of help from neighbors and family, Cindy's home, which had 2 feet of water in it, had already been emptied and gutted, and was currently drying out. Cindy is currently living in their RV that is parked in their driveway. 

But Cindy also had a garage/studio and a large shed that had not yet been cleaned out. It was our task to help her accomplish this. A couple years ago Cindy lost one of her kidneys to cancer. Recently, she has been having difficulties with her other kidney. This leaves her very tired and weak. She expressed how daunting the task of emptying, sorting, and cleaning out everything was. She said it seemed so overwhelming she didn't even want to start. It was emotional as well. 

Along with many tools and decorations , Cindy had boxes and boxes of photographs that were in storage. Many of which were completely ruined. 

At one point we overheard Condy talking on the phone saying, "I've got 13 strangers here hauling my stuff out to the curb." It was after this we tried to slow things down and really have a conversation with her about everything. Cindy explained that her sister, and brother and father were all currently going through the same thing. That she wanted so badly to go and help them and ignore the work that had to be done at her own home. She talked about how she had about 10 minutes from when she saw the water rushing down her street, to when it started entering her house. She said she tried to move as many belonging up high on counters and shelves as she could. 
After our work and conversations were done we had the chance to pray with and over Cindy. We thanked her for the opportunity to serve her.  She seemed very touched by the fact that this group of 13 people from Michigan, would drop everything and come down to Louisiana. We finally understood why God was telling us, "Just go. Be there." 
It was a hard, emotional, rewarding experience to be with Cindy for these 2 hours. It seemed like we did so little- just carrying stuff, mopping a floor. But to Cindy, it was a huge relief. It was a burden that was looming over her, that was lifted. To Cindy, it was an expression of love. 

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