Enjoying the entertainment the construction world was providing, I came upon two workers on either side of the road. Each sat atop an over-turned five-gallon bucket. Both had been assigned a caution sign and neither one looked particularly enthralled with his duties. But despite the fact that a passing motorist would likely not be cautioned by the sign resting on the ground of the worker on the right, I decided to ask the other fella to explain the work behind him. It looked like a huge basin was being created, earth scooped up and hauled away by massive trucks. But why? I pondered. Were they creating a retention lake, clearing the way for the foundation of yet another building, or addressing an engineering issue? I didn't know. So I asked.
"Hey there. So what's happening behind you? Looks like a big project!"
With a grin widened by the gaps between the missing teeth, the affable man chuckled his response.
"Well, I don't know. I just hold the sign."
"Okay, then. I guess it will remain a mystery. Enjoy your day out here!" I replied.
"Oh, I will!" his tone suggesting he rather enjoyed this brief interruption to his bucket-sitting.
With a final look over my shoulder and a cheery "See ya," I continued along, dodging the warning signs placed smack-dab in the middle of the sidewalk.
My run continued, carrying me past several other construction sites. I noted with interest a number of other idle workers. Outside one tiny shack at the entrance to a work site, sat an elderly man sipping on a drink. It wasn't the first time I had seen him. Day in, day out, he sits in his chair and watches the trucks go by. I wondered if he was as clueless as the my new bucket-sitting friend.
Going through the motions. Oblivious. Why do more? Why know more?
Road sign holders and guard shack guys are not the only guilty parties. Being oblivious sure is a lot easier than being fully engaged.
As my run took me through campus and onward, I inventoried areas of my life that might include bucket-sitting. Am I, as the writer of Ephesians advises, being "very careful then, how you live, not as the unwise, but as the wise"? Or conversely, am I simply going through the motions, brain and thoughtful intentionality placed on the back burner? Am I being disciplined, well-informed, and in constant pursuit of excellence, or do I become lazy, content with past accomplishments?
God bless that dear bucket-sitter. But God help this gal to stay on her feet and keep making forward progress.