It was the Summer of 2007 and I had work to do. Not the type of work where you clock in, do your job, and clock out. This was a different type of work, the type that is only rewarding to you, through yourself. I had done mission work before through my church, but this was different. For the 2007 Rebuild a Community trip, we decided to go to the ghetto of Atlanta Georgia to help out with community needs. These needs ranged from repainting schools, to essentially rebuilding houses, lucky for me, I was in the construction group.
We arrived at Ethal Granger’s house, a nice lady of about 75. She immediately hurried to meet us and was so ecstatic that we had come to help her. Briefly after arriving at her house we learned that after the 1996 World Olympics in Atlanta, certain bylaws were instated that restricts how dilapidated each house can look. Needless to say, Ethal’s house was beyond recall, in fact, dilapidated would have been a complete understatement. There was poison ivy growing on every inch of the house, there were bee hives in the ground, under the porches, and in the yard, her gutters were falling off, and the house had hardly a speck of paint left. This was our job to fix.
We began by mowing the yard and removing the poison ivy from the gutters. The fact that it took us over 9 hours, just to remove a harmful vine from Ethal’s house astounded me. I was completely dumbfounded at how much work went into making something look nice and simply safe. This simple act of kindness seemed priceless to Ethal because since her health was declining, she could not do it herself. The sad part is that Ethal is only one of countless numbers that fall under the same unfortunate category.
As the work progressed into the second day, we removed entire trees and bushes that hid bus stops near her house. At night time, this same foliage masked the faces of countless drug dealers and homeless drunks, who had plagued the neighborhood for years. As we dove deeper into the...
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