The past 2 Saturday mornings we have tackled the growing weed problem in the church courtyard and between the kids church and church tent. They had really got out of hand and with all the drama we have faced in the past few months this was at the bottom of the list. The leaders of the church explained and encouraged the congregation to join us each Saturday, that we should be taking care of what the Lord has given to us.
The first Sat. we met at 5am, (yes…I must have been crazy, but felt leading by example was so important) for prayer together and then at 6am we went at it. We started out with just the church leaders and I felt I was back growing up in small farm town USA…pulling the weeds from the garden or picking up sticks and rocks out of the yard. They teased me at first, but I shared with them that I grew up doing just this. Can’t say I enjoyed it then, but now I see it in a beautiful way. Working alongside my brothers and sisters.
They used homemade hoes and machetes. I used my hands. They wielded each tool like it was a part of their body and I knew if I tried I would cut off a limb. I didn’t think that would be a wise thing to do:>) About an hour into the work a group of ladies from the orphanage came and worked a bit before heading to work with the kids. What I had done in an hour…they did in less than 35 min. I was put in my place…lol. I don’t know about you, but coming early to lend a hand before working hard all day, this showed me how incredibly strong these women are. Not physically, because I know they can run circles around me, but in heart. And they did it with smiles on their faces, songs on their lips and laughter.
There were many people who passed by and just watched…I sort of felt like a freak show:>) I even understood some of the conversations of said people. One person asked, not me personally, why is this blanc working? Their reply…because she is working for the Lord! Why is she helping you? Their reply…because she is our sister and wants to help. In those conversations I can’t tell you how humbled and loved I felt. When you jump in and get your hands dirty (figuratively and physically), even if you look foolish doing it, you show that you care and that you are here to walk this road shoulder to shoulder. You relate in a way that speaks more than their language.
The second Saturday we had more people come to help, from the youth to our elderly. We tackled the brush between the 2 meeting places. It was a mess, but as I learned from growing up…many hands make lite work. There was singing while we worked and we laughed together so much. Again it was beautiful to serve alongside my precious brothers and sisters.
This also confused those passer bys. Why were we singing? Why were we praising God? Why were we laughing? Why were we enjoying one another? I pray that by our example people will come to see that we were doing this joyfully for the Lord. That they saw Jesus in us and that they want to know this Jesus too!!
One in particular that set an example not just for the outsiders, but for me as well…Dicell…he and his wife came right on time (which for those who know, isn’t a norm here!!!) He had his own machetee and his wife helped him get situated and he went right to it. What blessed me though is he is probably in his late 60′s early 70′s, but it wasn’t the age that did it! He also crouched down to the ground like a catcher in a baseball game, but to top it all off…HE IS BLIND!!! And yes he worked circles around me…he tackled the weeds like his life depended on it. All the while singing praises to God. Boy did he show me what it truly means to work with all your heart as if working for the Lord. Amen!! When we finished, he stood up…stretched his arms into the air and praised Jesus for it all. This moment brought tears to my eyes, just as it is now as I type these words. Oh what a joy!! Oh what a blessing!! Oh what I learn through serving alongside my bothers and sisters!!
LET US PRAISE HIM WHILE WE WORK!!