Building A House: The Schedule

Being part of the construction industry for over 18 years (wow, that makes me sound old), I realize that it is extremely important to have a project schedule in order to keep everyone on task and moving toward the ultimate goal of completing the project on time and under budget.  Over the years, I’ve seen projects fail when schedules didn’t exist, weren’t correct, or just weren’t followed.  I’ve also seen extremely complicated building projects come together quite smoothly thanks to a well thought out schedule that everyone followed.

When we were in Guatemala, we were told we had three days to completely build a house from the ground to the roof.  We didn’t have a written schedule, but we had a “construction manager” from Casas por Cristo who kept us informed and on task.

Josh Crabbs (the “construction manager”) travels back and forth between El Paso, TX where he lives to building sites in Mexico and Guatemala to lead teams in building houses.  On our last day together in Guatemala, I told Josh that he has one of the best jobs in the whole world – he gets to build things, he works with teams, and he helps to dramatically change the world for so many needy families.

During our home build project, one of the kids asked Josh a question that was on the minds of many of us on our team:  “Josh, are we on schedule?”  We all wanted to make sure we would complete the project on time.  In fact, we wanted to know if we’d finish it up a little early.  I love Josh’s response, “Yep!  We’re right on God’s schedule.”  Building a complicated building is one thing, but building a house for Christ (Casas por Cristo) means something else when it comes to schedule.

I think Josh was trying to remind our team that God has opportunities all around us if we just open our eyes.  The house will be completed when it needs to be completed.  When you’re building a house for someone like this, it’s not just about finishing the physical floor, walls, and roof.  It’s about bringing hope and light into a family’s life.  It’s about being open to God’s voice as He speaks to us and teaches us through the experience.

I’m sure there were moments when Josh was frustrated with our progress on certain tasks, but I also think he knew we would complete the house at some point on day 3 of our build.  He knew that it was so much more than keeping up with a schedule.  It was about changing lives – the lives of the family and the lives of our team.

As it turned out, we actually finished the house before lunch on the third day.  Our team did a fabulous job working together, following directions, and staying on God’s schedule.

When have you had to rely on God’s schedule in your life?