Thursday, September 14, 2017

Habitat for Humanity Build #8: Marquette, Michigan

We recently completed another Habitat for Humanity Care-a-Vanner build in Marquette, located in the beautiful Upper Peninsula of Michigan. It was our first opportunity to be team leaders, and ... Yah, Ya Betcha ... we were honored to work with a group of talented and enthusiastic volunteers who quickly became friends. 

While driving to the worksite one morning, I noticed groups of Canadian geese flying to the south in perfect formation. Were they trying to tell us that we better join in as the frosty days of winter will soon be upon us?

Possibly, but their magnificent flight pattern and potential was also a reminder of the power of teamwork ... teamwork that was evident as I looked around our Habitat for Humanity job site. 

Their overhead "honks" reminded me of a story that I shared during the next morning's devotion. "Lessons from Geese" are also lessons that we learn each time we are privileged to work with and get to know other Care-a-Vanners. 

Lesson 1 - The Importance of Achieving Goals
As each goose flaps its wings it creates an UPLIFT for the birds that follow. By flying in a 'V' formation the whole flock adds 71 percent extra potential to the flying range.
When we have a sense of community and focus, we create trust and can help each other to achieve our goals.
Elizabeth and Kenny and their four
children will call this house
their home this coming Thanksgiving
as a result of the UPLIFT of
all the talented Habitat volunteers!

Lesson 2 - The Importance of Teamwork
When a goose falls out of formation it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of flying alone. It quickly moves back to take advantage of the lifting power of the birds in front.
If we had as much sense as geese we would stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give our help to others.
to help hold up the ceiling
drywall panels as those taller
than me secured them with screws.

Lesson 3 - The Importance of Sharing
When a goose tires of flying up front it drops back into formation and another goose flies to the point position.
It pays to take turns doing the hard tasks. We should respect and protect each other's unique arrangement of skills, capabilities, talents and resources.
Doug and Richard shared their SKILLS
as they worked together to
measure and cut eight unique openings
in this piece of ceiling drywall.

Would it fit? Of course!
Perfectly ... the first time!

Lesson 4 - The Importance of Empathy and Understanding
When a goose gets sick, two geese drop out of formation and follow it down to the ground to help and protect it.
If we have as much sense as geese we will stand by each other in difficult times, as well as when we are strong.
When some Habitat families faced
we helped rehab two Habitat homes.

From painting ...
To tiling ...
To cleaning ...
To more cleaning ...

to help prepare the houses for new owners.

Lesson 5 - The Importance of Encouragement

Geese flying in formation 'HONK' to encourage those up front to keep up with their speed.
We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups and teams where there is encouragement, production is much greater. Individual empowerment results from quality honking!
to Richard and Sharon for sharing
their incredible drywalling skills!
to Jon B. and Carolyn W. for
diligently working to get to ensure
that the house siding was on straight!
to Karen and Alan who
celebrated their 36th wedding
anniversary working with us!
to Captain Pete who took our group
out on a tour of Marquette Harbor aboard
his elegant yacht, The Pelican.

to Vicki, Marquette's Habitat Support
Manager, who treated us to a
delicious pasty dinner on the lake
and encouraged us on every day!
to Barbara and her husband Phil
who cheerfully and skillfully took on
any task that needed to be done!

to this group of aspiring artists who got
"down and dirty" in order to apply a layer
of stucco to protect the house's foundation
to Maria who as a safety trainer,
made sure that we all did it "the safe way"!

to Marci who brightened up
our days with her smile
and stylish painting attire!

to our site supervisor, Doug, whose
knowledge and patience was top notch!

to Rick and Paula for assisting
with the team building by organizing
"extracurricular" activities ...
they like craft breweries almost as much as us!

to my wonderfully nerdy husband
who devised a way to indirectly
observe the solar eclipse ...
using scraps of drywall!

to all the talented people who
will make this house a home
for Elizabeth, Kenny and family!

Until next time ... Honk words of encouragement to all around you ... and enjoy the adventures in your life!

The Wildebeest joined us
on the job site on our last
work day before we started
our southern migration.
We are

Following The Geese!

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