When ideas war against relationship.

Men are funny when they are making things together.

We all think we know the best way to do it.

We feel like our idea of how to fix things must be better then everyone else. A lot of the time its not an arrogance. It’s just a genuine confidence and a desire to share the better way with everyone else.

So i stood there and watched as a bunch of guys and a girl put together the frame for what would become the boys toilets, in the back yard of a dorm of high school students. These students had shown our team over 11 days, what it meant to love and live nicely together. But i will write about that later.

They started with two long beams of wood, that one guy decided to saw into four. After a few attempts with the saw he decided to instead use an axe. Which worked a whole heap better. He then needed help to do the next bit so some others came and held the wood whilst he hammered some nails in. and as more people came over, the ideas began flying. and the positioning of people began to change. Some would wait till told when to move, Others would move into spots that were awkward or extremely well timed. Others would guide each other into spots alongside them. and then additions were made. How about you make some cross beams. How about you hammer the nails in a bit first. and this group, the ideas were all taken on board, even if they weren’t great. but most of them seemed to be. the group, together, made the construction better.

Can you remember a time you saw a picture of this where the group hindered the construction? Or the group completely shut down the construction because it couldn’t decide on the best way. So, instead of trying at least some type of idea, a group decides repeating nothing or even expecting something different (insanity) works just as well.

Life is full of these situations. When our better ideas become unrelational because we want to be right. Or other peoples ideas kind of suck so we don’t want that.

But, lets argue for a minute that life was made for relationship, not being right. The life was made for being in one accord with each other instead of doing things the best way. Then… who cares if your idea is mathematically right. It doesn’t give one, an excuse to communicate that idea impatiently, or elitistically, your good idea gives you a responsibility and an honour to bless people and empower others in a loving way.

Some of the best things my dad taught to me i’m only realising now, were the things he gently exemplified to me. He spoke all the time, and communicated things, and these are the things that stuck, the good ideas that were good ideas, that were also communicated well.

Watching these guys build was an honour.

The other stand out time i’ve seen this in action was in Ukraine, 40 minutes from Chernobyl, we were helping to build a cabin for a camp that was heavily involved in providing time away for orphans. The owner of the camp had four Ukrainian friends, who were all friends and all builders. These men had incredible stories and had offered to help build the camp.

One of the men used to be a rough, violent man, working for some rougher and more violent men. Another was an aodoptive father to kids that were an age that Ukrainians usually refused to adopt. One of them had been at the brink of death until his whole church gathered outside his house to pray for a long time, he was healed, and he also moved in with his brother (one of the other builders) to help him pay the bills. The fourth man, who had crazy awesome hair, had just had a baby with a whole in its heart. None of the doctors gave it a chance to live, so once again the church gethered to pray for the little baby, and days later the baby was still alive and miraculously healed. These men were friendly, hilarious and intensely father hearted men. They were all hard workers and were very good at what theyo.

In walks Jeremy – son of a man whos wood work teacher stole wood from him so he wouldnt massacre it. Owner of two scars on his body that came from misusing wood working tools. 4 girls, and John, who at that time had some back problems. We wenre’t the greatest builders ever. NO SIR. But i wanted to help.

So i picked up a hammer and some nails and started doing it sooo wrong i laughed. and then felt nervous… What would these builders do to me when they found out my first nail went in wrong. The bigger of the men walker over, saw what i did and shook his head. In that “hahahaha this guy…”, kind of way. He took out his hammer and simply attacked the wood to get the nail out and then with three hammers had another nail in properly. (my record got to 7 by the end. but i started with HEAPS) And he simply gave me a look, loaded with strangely mentor-like love that said ÿour doing great, dont worryif you stuff it, cause we can always fix it”

No yelling or screaming as my imagination had created. just fixing. Later i was allowed to use power tools. (just saying) These beautiful men worked as a unit. and they allowed us to become apart of their unit for a few days, they taught us and guided us and laughed with us.


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