Guatemala Part Three: the walls go up!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Monday night it rained and rained and rained—what a noise on the roof of our little room. I was so tired that I slept right through it and would not have noticed at all except that my mom got me up to go to the bathroom. We used the men’s facilities because they were closer ;-). When we got back and went to bed, she was rearranging her bed because she said her pillow was in a puddle or a puddle was in her pillow or something like that. I was not paying much attention because I was so tired.

In the morning there were puddles everywhere outside but I did not see any puddle around her pillow . . . and she wasn’t even sure maybe she was dreaming but, no, her pillow was a little wet but not too bad. Anyway, the next night she changed beds and then her pillow was fine. We had a great breakfast of scrambled eggs and lots of wonderful fruit again and then we were off to the worksite. It was muddy and very slippery going down all those hills and I definitely needed help; again my mom abandoned me to take pictures along the way.

I could not go down that last little hill to the worksite because it was just too scary and slippery. Brandon and Raimie made steps for me which was really nice AND it made going up and down easier and safer for everyone not just for me. We walked on the cement we had poured on Monday. Brandon called us to circle up and pray for the work of the day: we would make the walls and dig out the porch and pour a little more cement to make a porch. Uncle Jonathan started cutting boards again and the wood was going up and down but I just could not help with taking the boards down to Uncle Jonathan and then back up to the cement floor because of the slippery mud so I worked with Kay and we dug out the mud in the front of the house so that it would be level when we poured the cement for the porch. I helped fill the buckets and Kay took my buckets and dumped them at the side of the house so that there was more space to walk beside the house. It was fun work until we got all the mud out and hit hard hard ground. Then we had to ask for help from Uncle Jonathan and Ron: they chiseled away the hard clay and then we were able to shovel the loose dirt into buckets.

In the meantime, everyone else was helping to make the walls–wow that was fun to watch: after measuring, cutting, pounding in the nails; each one grabbed a corner and lifted up the wall and walked it over to the side to make room to make another wall and then Heather started snapping lines and drilling holes and the walls started to go up. It was exciting:  `I build a house!’ When the ground got too hard, I tried to find another job but we couldn’t find anything for me to do, so I took a little break.

Uncle Jeff brought a memory game so my mom found some clean pieces of wood to make a table and she found a piece of wood for me to sit on so I didn’t have to sit in the mud. Then she invited the kids to learn a new game. We had so much fun! They liked to look at more than two cards AND they would put the cards back in different places so it was crazy trying to find matches and a game of 5 matches took a long time because the cards kept changing places on the board. It was funny!

We took a break for lunch: Guatemalan spaghetti with delicious homemade cheese and fresh tortillas with salad. Yum! Aunt Laura, Olivia, Leah, Bremen and Schyler had a lot of fun taking pictures and playing around with new friends during lunch. After lunch we finished preparing a level space for the porch and we started to make cement again. Memory games had to stop because they needed me to fill cement buckets again.

In the evening after supper, we had circle-up devotions. Brandon talked about building your house on the Rock:

Why do you call be Lord, Lord and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.’ He talked about how hard we worked on Monday to dig the foundation, to make it level, to reinforce it with re-bar, to use a strong recipe for cement. We all worked hard on the foundation to make it straight which will make it easier as we build the walls and roof; with a good foundation, it is easier to make everything line up and be strong and look nice. So it is with Christ as our foundation, our rock; He is strong and level and sure and when the winds come, our lives will remain upright because the foundation holds us steadfast. Our lives are built close to that foundation: reading the Word, listening to it preached and taught; and obeying in our daily lives. The foundation will hold us safe when the winds of life blow. Then he shared a little about his own story—how he never would have dreamed that he would be serving as a missionary in Guatemala building houses for families in need. He had always wanted to serve the Lord but he didn’t see how he could do anything. He felt ill-equipped for any type of work. And yet . . . God had plans for him. `Now I am living and working in Guatemala. If I want to spend time in the Word before I get to work and meet the teams at 6:30, I need to get up early. Some days it is really hard but I have learned that it is VERY important that I start my days close to my foundation in reading, listening and prayer. And so it is for each of you in this group,’ he said. `God has plans for you AND you will want to stay close to Him as the walls go up and the windows and doors are placed in your lives. Your life won’t be perfect and the house we are building won’t be perfect but the foundation is secure and it will last a long time; and most importantly Christ is our steadfast foundation and He will last forever.’ I am sure that my mom was thinking about me and about all the other young people: Schyler, Leah, Olivia, and Bremen. Each one of us has the future ahead of us. I know that I will never forget the day we prepared the foundation and poured the cement for that house: it was hard but fun work and it was so exciting on Tuesday to see the walls go up, `I build a house.’ Well, really God is building the house and He is building our lives. May we all stay close to our foundation by listening and obeying Him.

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3 thoughts on “Guatemala Part Three: the walls go up!

  1. Remembering to put your relationship with Jesus first is the most important lesson. You have learned many things doing this mission trip. I pray that you always take time every day to read your Bible and see what God has to say to you for that day. He is always teaching us new things. You have worked hard, Mathalia! I’m very proud of you. I miss you and your mom.

  2. Pingback: Guatemala Part 5: Dedication! | Mathalia's Potholders

  3. Pingback: Guatemala Again! | Mathalia's Potholders

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