The street I work on is a busy place. Several restaurants have closed and new contenders are taking their place. Watching the transformation is an act of patience. I am particularly excited a gelato shop that is opening. State of the art equipment, a passion for great taste and the perfect gelato, and an Italian temperament do not always sync with local Singaporean contractors. As with any locations, contractors generally fall into two camps. The first, a rarity everywhere, shows up on time, works efficiently, and always delivers on their promises. The usual is at the opposite end of the spectrum in all regards.
As I listen and watch the two lead Italians, it is clear that they are familiar with work. The hours, attention to detail, willingness to listen, and commitment are on display every day. They are throwing everything within themselves on the table in order to get their idea working. The challenge of moving quickly is the dependency they have on their contractors. Critical path dependencies, mandatory check points and inspections, and late arrivals and no shows conspire to slow progress and at times totally stop it.
It is as if the actions of the contractors are screaming and taunting the team. It is not just one; it is a vicious pattern without end. The obvious advice comes from everyone. “Don’t tune out their malicious filth, the brawling invective that never lets up.” (Psalm 74.23) They are paying attention but the challenge of finding a better way of managing them remains. The story continues without end, at least so far.
I wake thinking of their challenges and wondering what God would do. Before I think too I realize that I often act like a contractor. I have my reasons and rationale, fancy labels for excuses and rationalization. In the end, it is Compassion and Hope that are neglected while I pursue my self interests.
The gelato guys always look blissfully happy. I know inside they are anything but calm. I imagine Divinity not paying attention. Life reminds me that the Spirit knows everything.