September 4, 2022

To Restore and Rebuild

A North American church gets a refresh.

Editor’s Note—Build and Restore International is a member of Adventist-laymen’s Services and Industries (ASI), a supporting ministry of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. 

Often our plans fail that God’s plans for us may succeed.”* Failed plans providentially led to the fulfillment of the mission at West Sacramento Seventh-day Adventist Church. Pastor Sasa Andelkovic contacted Ostap Dzyndra, founder of Build and Restore International (BRI), to request help for his church in Sacramento. 

The request filtered to the back of Ostap’s mind. However, when an upcoming mission project was canceled, he dropped to his knees and asked God what he should do next. Pastor Andelkovic’s name came to mind. Ostap immediately contacted the pastor and traveled to West Sacramento to see the project. 

A scene of dirty gutters and windows covered with spiderwebs greeted him. Paint peeled away from the siding, and rust clung to the doors. Overgrown bushes pressed into the exterior walls, causing staining and water damage, and plants grew up into the trim. 

In Haggai 1 the Lord makes it known that He is displeased when His house remains in ruin. “Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build my house so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored” (verse 8, NIV). It is God’s will and good pleasure that we, as His people, honor and reverence Him by taking good care of our church structures and houses of worship. 

ASI W Sac Church 1

A Transformation

Ostap immediately began planning how the repairs and restoration of the West Sacramento church would be undertaken. His team took measurements and pictures; church members chose paint colors; and the work of building and restoring began one week later. 

The Lord assembled 24 volunteers who began by pressure-washing the church, 

repairing the broken wood and trim, and sealing cracks, holes, windows, and doors. They repaired light fixtures, replaced bulbs, and built a brand-new door for the maintenance shed. They even installed a new mailbox on the church grounds! They primed and painted doors and walls (using 12 buckets of paint!). 

A team of students refreshed the landscaping, pulling weeds and removing palm trees that had become hazardous to the church structure. They replaced the fence surrounding the property too. The West Sacramento Seventh-day Adventist Church was completely restored. 

Ostap had been praying for a paint sprayer, and three days before the mission began, his cousin called him to tell him that he had purchased a new paint sprayer and offered him his old one, which was still in good condition. The miracles continued as three volunteers brought chainsaws with them to cut down the palm trees. The workers came equipped and eager to do the work, and with God’s blessing, the project was completed in just four days—two days ahead of schedule. 

Throughout the ages the Lord has called for humble workers to come, labor in His vineyards, and finish the work. This call is not exclusive. It goes out to each and every one. What remains to be seen is who will answer the call. May it be that when the call comes to us, we, like Isaiah, will say, “Here am I. Send me!” (Isa. 6:8, NIV).

ASI W Sac Church 2

* Ellen G. White, The Ministry of Healing (Mountain View, Calif.: Pacific Press Pub. Assn., 1905), p. 473.