Roof panels

roof blog

This week I got to work with a smaller sized group that came to the Dominican to build a roof for a chapel. Typically we get to build the whole chapel (or in last weeks case- a house) but since we had less people, building a roof was a better option.

Coming into this week I was like “cool we get to build a roof.” Pretty neutral about it. As the week went on, my attitude got a little more negative. I just felt like building a roof was not nearly accomplishing as much as building a whole chapel. The group worked incredibly hard and quickly, and we often didn’t have enough work for the amount of people we had.  There was more sitting around then usual. Because my job as an intern is to equip the short timers, oftentimes I had to sit back and let them do the work.

As we headed to the chapel site at 4 in the morning to build our roof, I was riding in the bus thinking about how much cooler it is to build a chapel. I was thinking solely about the practicality and necessity of a chapel versus a roof.

When we finished putting the roof up on the chapel we circled up with our group, the pastor, his family, and other church members. We all came and worshipped together in that chapel with the  roof we had just constructed. We sang songs that could be sung in both Spanish and English. I was standing between our group and the Dominicans, and I could clearly hear both Spanish and English words being sung to our Creator. The presence of the Lord was so prevalent in that chapel. To hear people from such different cultures worshiping together is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever witnessed. There’s just something awe-inspiring about hearing people worship in two different languages. It just reminded me how powerful our God is, that he connects even those from different countries and backgrounds.

What I realized when building that roof was that it may have taken less work than a chapel, but it still blesses the body of Christ and that’s what matters. Sometimes God’s will is not glorious and all encompassing. Sometimes he needs us to do the little things. Not that this was a little thing- we built so many stinkin’ roof panels [so many I even dreamed about constructing roof panels].

We don’t get the credit for building the whole chapel, but focusing on that made me lose site of what was truly important. God has already been glorified in that building. Constructing the roof was so incredibly worth it and I wouldn’t change a thing about the week. What an opportunity to witness the first worship songs sung in the completed chapel. Maybe we didn’t get to put up the whole chapel, but we got to build a dang roof for a place that’s purpose is solely to glorify God! What an honor to get to take part in that.

Power Tools

So I’ve been doing a lot of construction the past couple weeks, and I’ve learned how to use lots of different power tools. Now, could I tell you what all their names are and what to do when something doesn’t work quite right? Ehh maybe. Some I’m better at then others. Drilling is my favorite. Probably cause I’m good at it and for the most part others aren’t (or it just takes more practice). I’m also good at the chop saw (even though I forget its name sometimes.). It’s a more technical/ detailed job and involves working with numbers – which I like.

As I was thinking about all the different tools and how each one is necessary in construction, it reminded me of the chapter in 1 Corinthians when Paul writes about spiritual gifts. Without all the necessary tools – hammer, nails, screws, chop saw, router, hand saw… Construction would be so much harder and take so much longer. Some tools are more difficult to use, some take more precision, some take more time and others involve seeing the whole picture and not just the details. Different workers have different strengths. But we brought it all together to create a house this week. We had many different power tools and we needed a team to carry out the work we had set out for us.

In the same way, God has gifted us each with different spiritual gifts such as giving, serving, hospitality, teaching, encouragement, wisdom, empathy… It’s easy to neglect the tools in our belt and try to do it on our own. But just like how each person’s tools are needed in construction, so it is with spiritual gifts also. We don’t need to just be present in order to get work done, we need to be willing. Willing to learn and work on our giftings.

As Christians, we are all part of the body of Christ. We are each gifted differently and each of our gifts are needed to create a team that glorifies the Lord. Sometimes we don’t know exactly what tools we have [I spent hours using the chop saw but it took me half a week to learn it’s name] but we need to be willing to use and practice the tools God has given us in order to have an effective ministry.