Thursday, August 30

Building Homes

Down here in Ensenada, there are many organizations that will build homes for people. In fact, my coworkers tell me that they have dealt with dependency issues...a mentality that if "you won't build me a house, I'll go to the next group who will." This is a mentality that we do NOT want to encourage or deal with.

Therefore, when it comes to building houses, we rely on the local Christian & Missionary Alliance pastors for recommendations, which we always check out beforehand. The people we build houses for are families/individuals who are engaged with the local C&MA churches, are known by the pastors, and have a genuine need.

We built a second home for a family of 14 who were all living in one 2 bedroom home.
We built a home for a widow, her daughter and granddaughter, whose house was a shanty, close to falling down.
We built a home for a couple who are caretakers of their two (very active) grandchildren, whose house was even worse than the above shanty.

Those are just a few of the stories...a few of the families whose lives have been touched by the work and service of the teams who have paid to come demonstrate God's love, in tangible ways.

I have enjoyed being a part of some of the construction. Something about getting your hands dirty and seeing tangible progress makes construction exciting! I have learned that I love spackling and dislike sanding. I enjoy painting and putting up drywall but don't enjoy nailing as much. Personally I have concluded that I would really rather NOT ever build my own home as I would be likely to take shortcuts just to get done. But it's fun to be part of the process for these people.

However, when it comes to building homes, the thing I LOVE the most, and have been personally blessed by, is praying for these homes. Sometimes I have written prayers on the walls (before the drywall goes up) and other times, I've just prayed while working. But I love asking the Lord to bless the home, all who live there and all who visit. I pray that they will know peace, joy, and Truth. I pray that the home will be a home of hospitality, unconditional love, and abounding with forgiveness.

I love knowing that long after the house is completed, moved into, and made into a home, that the prayers are still "living and active," even if the owners are unaware of the prayers or never know the exact English words. God hears the prayers...and that part of the ministry excites me.

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