Day 5 (Wednesday, Aug 2) – Our Team Grows

I still remember the conversation I had with the Yugo representative. The makeup of our team had solidified. I had been praying for ten people to be on our team and for awhile it looked like we would arrive at either ten or eleven. But, due to various circumstances, we had ended up with our nine. So I wanted to talk with someone from Yugo and find out if they would even allow us to do the house-building project or if they would make us do something else like VBS or a sports camp.

The representative from Yugo asked me about the age make-up of our team and it was almost as if I could hear her doing the math in her head. “So…with your nine, plus a foreman and plus an intern…eleven…yeah, you should be able to finish the house at the end of four days.”

And so we came down here with our team of nine and hoped that with a lot of hard work, a good foreman, and a good intern, we’d be able to finish what we came to accomplish.

Well, to our amazement and by God’s grace, at the end of our third day of work, we were on the cusp of finishing what was supposed to take us the full four days of work. We just needed to do some touch-up painting, clean the inside of the house, and we would be done.

Why? Well, for starters, everyone on the team has been working with extreme diligence. Everyone is ready, eager, and willing to help in any way necessary. And, it’s been awesome to work with such a great team.

But in a second, unexpected manner, God has not merely given us an eager and hard-working team…He has actually grown our team of nine to a team of eleven!

Everyday after morning devos, chapel, and breakfast we load up in our van and make the 30 minute trek south to our job site. And every single day Andres and Rosa are waiting for us at the job site–waiting not merely to greet us, but to work alongside us. When we unload the equipment from Ricardo’s van, they’re right there with us. When we paint the trim in the blazing sun, they’re right there painting with us. When we are hammering framing, they’re hammering with us. When we’re nailing dry wall, putting mud on the interior of the house, hammering in shingles, sanding the walls, they’ve been there every step of the way. Working with us. Laughing with us. Praying with us. Eating with us. They have become part of our team.

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Yesterday this all became crystal clear to me in three instances.

The first instance was as we finished the roof. Noah (our intern), Brady, Elias, Dan, and I had been working hard to get the roof done. And with our day winding down we were finally ready to nail the last piece of roofing down. But we were missing something. Rather, we were missing someone. We hollered down for someone to send Andres up on top of the roof. And as Andres made his way up, Noah put four nails into the last piece of roofing, but he didn’t drive them all the way in. When Andres go to the top, Noah handed him a hammer and all of us watched as he drove the final piece of roofing onto the top of his house.

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The second instance was at the end of our work day. All of us were standing around outside the front of the house and all of us had that look of contended exhaustion from a hard day of work. Ricardo asked for a volunteer to pray and Kathy offered to do so. And in her prayer Kathy thanked God for knowing exactly how many people we needed on our team–not nine, but eleven. And I thought to myself: we really have became a team of eleven.

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The third instance was during the Wednesday night even service at Pastor Nicolas Gallegos’ church. After singing six or seven songs and before our team’s portion of the service (singing and preaching), Pastor Nicolas gave his church an opportunity to say words of thanksgiving. Various people in the congregation shared and the time culminated with Andres and Rosa coming up to the front to express gratitude to both God and to us. As Rosa shared, emotion began to overwhelm her and when she had finished sharing Carli jumped out of her seat to give her a big hug. Again I was reminded: this dear couple is a part of our team.

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God knew that we needed a team of eleven to accomplish His purposes here in Ensenada. He knew that we needed a team of eleven (plus a good foreman and a good intern) to get the house done.

I knew that too.

But what I didn’t know was that those final two team members wouldn’t come from Littlerock, WA, but from Ensenada, Mexico.

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