Painting the Town!

For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a Spirit of power. (2 Timothy 1:7)

So, one of my goals in the Three Change Challenge is to do something outside of my comfort zone… and not worry about it.  Although most people who are doing the challenge have health and fitness goals, I decided to make mine more… lifestyle related.

About two months ago, my friend Nick told me about a service project our church was taking part in, Paint the Town.  Paint the Town is an initiative by the City of Florence to paint homes for people in low-income areas in North and East Florence.  I just started going to church at Abundant Life a few months ago, and this was my first service project with them.

Slight problem: I knew next-to-nothing about painting a house.  Oh, and the only people I knew at church were the other IPOD members who I eat with on Wednesday nights.

There were so many excuses I could’ve used, but truthfully, I felt called to Paint the Town.  Sure, I didn’t know how to paint- but what an awesome chance to learn a new skill.  I didn’t really know many folks at church- but what better way to meet new people?  It involves me getting up early on a Saturday morning- but I have insomnia anyway.

So, on April 24, I woke up early and was off to a home in North Florence with some other peeps.  I really didn’t know what to expect.  I had no idea where I’d be painting, and driving through the lady’s neighborhood, I felt slightly nervous.  Fortunately- we had some other awesome teams working on our street, including our church’s youth group and a team from ADP here in Florence.  Some other volunteers shared supplies and helped us paint and get a game plan together.

We painted the home of a lady named Mrs. Odell.  Mrs. Odell is a very sweet older lady who can’t get around too well.  Her daughter (I believe it’s her daughter) was there and does help her out some, though.

Their family lived in a very simple, small white house with a tin carport, housing a car covered with pollen that I'm sure Mrs. Odell drove frequently at some point.

When we painted, Mrs. Odell sat outside on her porch and watched us- and she said thank you for everything we did for her.

Unfortunately, the best laid plans sometimes collapse, and after a little over two hours of work, it started POURING rain, so we quickly regrouped and decided to come back the next Saturday (May 1) to finish up the job.  Despite getting a good bit painted in two hours, we were pretty sad that we had to leave so soon- but little did we know, this was such a blessing in disguise.

The pouring rain actually let us pour blessings on Mrs. Odell, her family, and her neighborhood.

Some of us who painted the house are good friends, and throughout the week, we had Mrs. Odell and her partially painted house on our minds.  So, on Saturday morning, we came with more than just paint brushes and rollers.  Julie brought a cake she’d made.  Jennifer brought a lunch of chicken and rice.  I brought a reusable “green” bag full of cleaning supplies and things for Mrs. Odell’s house- toilet paper, paper towels, bathroom cleaner, kitchen cleaner, dish detergent, tissues (Yay for Harris Teeter and their awesome sales~ I don’t think I paid over $1 for anything in the bag).

Beth brought a beautiful potted flower that matched Mrs. Odell's porch once it was finished.

Needless to say- after we gave Mrs. Odell what we brought her, we got to work.

Nick & Julie are ready to scrape!

The Swing- Before

... and after

Lance & Jennifer- scraping!

Me & Beth painting with the rollers- *high rolling*

Nick painting, Marquel "supervising"~ he was the official breakfast run guy!, and me about to take a pic with my camera (which was most likely sparked by Nick picking up that roller!)

We also took breaks for some fun, too.

Paint Fingers!

Some of us- this was after breakfast so we were all in a good mood!

You have to be incredibly trusting to let this crazy bunch paint your house!

With Mrs. Odell

Along with Mrs. Odell, our church was able to bless a little boy who lived next door.  When we were painting on the 24th, a little boy rode up on his bike and started talking to us.  However, his bike only had one peddle, so basically he peddled with one foot and ran with the other foot (I will admit, it was quite amusing).  Our church takes up a special offering each Sunday called an alms offering- and everyone’s asked to give only $1 to go toward various community projects…

... and through the offering, the church was able to buy him a new bike.

Lance even taught him some new bike tricks!

So, there’s another picture that I’m sure you’ve been waiting for…

And after lots of hard work, here's what Mrs. Odell's house now looks like! The house looks beautiful now- even if we didn't look beautiful, covered in paint.

It was really awesome to be a part of Paint the Town- and we’re already thinking about future ideas for projects and community service.  Hopefully it won’t be much longer- Goal #6 is to work with a big volunteer/community service project… and I’m getting closer to 30 every day :).

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This entry was posted in 13 Things to Do Before 30, Abundant Life Church, The Three Change Challenge, Weekend Fun. Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Painting the Town!

  1. way to go!! I am linking you up tomorrow!!

  2. Pingback: The Three Change Challenge: Wrap Up « I've got a couple dents in my fender, got a couple rips in my jeans…

  3. Pingback: 13 Things to Do Before 30- One year later | Amy Lauren

  4. Pingback: 2010- In Words & Pictures | Amy Lauren

  5. Pingback: 2010 In Words and Pictures | Amy Lauren

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