I’ve been on mission this week.  33 of us from church went to New Mexico to help a local pastor in his work with the Navajo.  While most of the team led morning Bible study, a few of us did home maintenance.  The spiritual nature of our task was to “prepay” the use of the building and a witness to the community.

On Monday, we joined with a team from Georgia to put a roof on a community center.  There is nothing glamorous about spreading tar cement and nailing roll roofing in the hot July New Mexico sun.  (We went through a lot of water that day).    The three from Georgia had repaired the roof decking last week, and we joined them in finishing the job with cutting the ten rolls to size, cementing them down and nailing it in place.   By God’s grace, both teams were needed to finish, but neither knew of the other before we arrived.  They were leaving the next day, and we arrived just in time with the five additional workers  to complete the job.

On Tuesday & Wednesday, we painted a 2-story house.  There aren’t many 2-story houses in the area, and this one was at the top of a hill on the main road.  The hot sun had taken a toll on the siding, and it looked pretty rough.  The thirsty wood sucked in the paint, but the result was dramatic.  The owner (grandmother to the 10 kids and 3 other adults living there) was thrilled, and will tell the story of how the Baptists care for one another.  We bought access.

On Thursday, it was back to the community center.  Part of our team had begun to use it for Bible studies, and we painted the trim around the roof.  It made a great visual improvement, and helped cement the relationship between the local pastor and the members of that community.  Next week, the pastor will hold another Bible study there, and will begin to hold prayer meetings in the facility rent free. (The rent was paid by our labor.)

What was the spiritual nature of painting and roofing?  It bought access.  The Gospel will be preached in that community on the Reservation, on Navajo family lands, because of the efforts of 8 construction missionaries.