A year ago, I stood on the stage leading worship. The team and I led the people boldly in praise and anthem,
“We’re Gonna Shout It From The Rooftops
That Love Has Broken These Chains
We’re Gonna Sing It And We Won’t Stop
Love Has Spoken
Our Lives Forever Changed”
It was one of the glorious moments when the whole of the congregation sang their hearts out as one. Love had entered the room to break chains and all were singing and shouting about it. As voices raised louder and louder we sang all the more boldly,
“Tell The King Of Lies
There’s Nothing More To Say
Our Sins Nailed To The Cross
And There’s No One In The Grave”
We were making a claim through song that the king of lies was dead and Christ had won. I looked at those singing, tears streaming, fists raised proclaiming and I knew Jesus was doing something special. And that made me want to shout from the rooftop.
Reflections from the roof.
A week later, I boarded a plane with the team of 15 I was leading to Guatemala. Fifteen individuals had caught vision this year to come help build a house in the Guatemala City Dump. I had been leading teams for 5 years to help get children sponsored through Potter’s House Guatemala when God whispered, “build a house.”
I can’t even began to tell you how the king of lies went to work, but in the end Jesus won. Resources were raised and we were on our way to build a house.
Building houses in Guatemala is quite different than the area I live in. Here we can pull our work trucks up to the site, haul our tools in, and be ready to go to work within minutes. Well, Guatemala is different. We were building a home in the slums. We had to carry our equipment, ladders, paint, and everything else we’d need about a mile to the house we were building. Up and down hills and stairs we’d go.
A days into building we were painting and someone asked if I’d crawl up and paint the outside trim. I climbed the shaky ladder as far as I could and there it was — the rooftop.
There wasn’t a pointy top or shingles. It was just the top — a flat roof with rusty corrugated tin laying about. Trees, dirt and weeds were there just on the other side. I looked about and the rooftop drew me in. My mind was transported back to leading worship just the Sunday before.
I noticed a few things standing up on that roof:
- You don’t need a secure roof to be joyful. People were strolling about and kids were playing in mud puddles. Laughter could be heard from way up top. With the devastation and destruction from Hurricane Harvey this one rings loud and true here in south Texas.
- Community should get excited for their community. Neighbors wondered what were going on. Some came over to help. All were thrilled for the family who were getting a home. Do you know what’s going on in your neighbors lives and how you can help or celebrate them?
- It’s not the circumstances you live in that determine your future. While we would consider this amount of poverty in the city dump a dead end, we heard story after story of those who lived there who went on to have businesses and careers.
His new book releases today. It’s a must read for anyone longing to love your neighbor — any neighbor near or far. His book will challenge you to serve and make the ordinary of today become extraordinary.
Jon is an ordinary guy just like you and I. His reflections will stretch your heart whether your standing in piles of poverty or sitting next to a stranger at work.