Monday morning in Mexico we got straight to work on the houses.  For years we have been going to the same village in Reynosa and building homes for people who have become my personal friends and family.  This week was a little different.  This week, we build two "mini-casas."  Each home was for an elderly widower who lived alone.  The houses this week were a smaller version of what we normally build for a family, since they would be living alone.





These houses might remind you of the shed in your backyard, but to these men, they were mansions -- a clean, dry place to live out the rest of their lives.

House #1
The man at this house was probably in his 60's or so and is a widower.  He works everyday, but was so excited about his new home, he took off work and didn't miss a minute of the building process!  One day, after the house was mostly finished, I said to him, "Tu casa es muy bonita, si?" ("You're house is very pretty, yes?"). 
I speak decent spanish (God used me to translate WAY more than ever before this trip, and I am working to be more prepared for that in the coming trips).  Well, he must have thought I was fluent because he just went 90 to nothing about his house!  I couldn't understand all of the words, but I did understand that he was praising God for this house and was overjoyed.
I responded with, "Gloria a Dios!" and he agreed!  ("Glory to God!")
Before:

After:

If you notice, in the first photo, his old house was without windows. Now he has ventilation! With each house, someone from the team is given the opportunity to dedicate the new home to the owner. We then prayed over him and his house.


House #2
This house became the home of a very precious man.  He is a 90-something widower who is now living on his own, in his own house, for the first time in his whole life.  He has always lived with his parents or children and now he finally has a place to call his own. 
Since it was his first house, he had no furniture.  God is so awesome because he laid it on the hearts of some of the guys on our team to build him a table, chair, and some shelves for his home.  Some team members also got him curtains and clothes. He truely owned nothing of his own.



Before:
(this is behind his son's house. He lived in their home with them, which was built by another group like ours)

After:

He was very emotional and thankful during the prayer and dedication time for his new home...

And check out how excited his daughter-in-law, Janette, is for him to be moving out! haha just kidding, she always smiles that big :) but she does look excited, doesn't she? It's in the eyes haha

Here are some photos of his new furniture...
"For every house has a builder, but the one who built everything is God"
Hebrews 3:4

If you went on the trip and have any stories to share about these men, please leave a comment to share!
Tomorrow, tiempo con los amigos.

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