There they were, making the new Adelaide Road gardens, full of enthusiasm, rakes raking, shovels shovelling, wheelbarrows pushing, tipping and back for more.
You could tell from the way they moved, the look on their faces, the interaction between them: here were people proud of what they were doing – good proud, creating something of value that they were proud of and something their community could be proud of.
I wandered over and commented, “it’s looking good".
The replies, something like “yeah, it is, isn’t it?”, said it all.
Some might describe theirs as dead-end jobs, but these people knew the value of what they were doing.
More importantly, they were confident they were adding something worthwhile to their community.
Good pride is something which God has built into people: pride in a job well done, pride in knowing one is of worth.
When that good pride is taken away or not given a chance to be active, it demeans the person and causes people to think, “who am I; am I of any worth?”
God takes pride in his handiwork.
When he created this world, he said something like, “man, that is good".
His handiwork includes people.
That is why Jesus’ words and action always built up the people he met – except those who proudly put themselves above others, who got a tongue-lashing.
I’m sure God, if you could see him leaning against one of the trees, would have said to his son, “they are doing a really good job with what I made – I’m proud of them".
I am, too.