Rachel Norton says she enjoys talking about her grandma and the work she’s chosen to benefit others for Jesus.
“I like to brag about my grandma. It’s cool to say my grandma is is working construction and can lift sheet rock. She gets around perfectly and can do anything a 40-year-old can do.”
Rachel, 18, points to the work Wahneeta Norton, of New Covenant Community Church, Lincoln, Neb., undertakes every year as a worker for the Builders for Christ construction ministry. Wahneeta is on her eighth straight Builders trip and has worked nearly every time hanging sheet rock.
So why does Wahneeta, who recently retired after serving as a school secretary for 40 years, choose this physically demanding way to do missionary work?
“For the glory of God,” she says.
“There aren’t a lot of ways I feel I can serve the Lord. This is one way I can. I feel the Lord has given me the ability to do this – and, as a gift from God, I believe I need to use it for His glory.”
Wahneeta says she enjoys the fellowship which accompanies working side-by-side with other believers.
“It’s tough work, but you really can see what you accomplished when you put up sheet rock. It’s rewarding.
“Some have said ‘you just retired, why are you going on the trip and working like that?’ I tell them it’s fun. I love working with the people, I enjoy it. I’m not a shopper, I am a construction person.”
BFC trips are a family affair for Wahneeta, including this most recent build at Layton Avenue Baptist Church in Greenfield. Several family members – including grandchildren – worked at this year’s effort.
“I have eight grandchildren – and all of them have worked with me on a Builders for Christ project,” says Wahneeta.
Rachel is one of those eight.
“Working on these trips makes me step out of my comfort zone. It challenges me,” says Rachel, entering her freshman year at Southwest Baptist University in Bolivar, Mo. “I started coming on trips when I was 9. I have fun and enjoy myself.
“These trips help me to grow as a Christian because every church has a story on how the project became a reality, how they got their funding, or land or how the Lord made their building possible,” says Rachel. “It always reminds me of how the Lord works, and how He provides.”
“I love that we share with other believers, that we see what Christ has done in our lives, and the lives of others. I feel we can grow from that. I grow from it.”