My friend and Christian brother Jose has uniquely reminded me about the importance of Labor Day. Jose, who is educated, a farm manager, citizen of two countries, bilingual, and one of the smartest men I know when it comes to fruits and vegetables, remembers those who work hard in the fields. I know. Virtually every time I have heard him pray for a meal, he thanks God for them and asks the Almighty to bless them.
Having grown up on a little farm, I can remember many prayers of thanksgiving for the fresh food we ate. We were grateful for the bounty of a harvest. But Jose, in this industrialized, information-age culture, takes time to remember the workers who helped deliver the food we enjoy.
I know that the idea of Labor Day is far more about Unions and management, blue-collar and white collar, etc. But yesterday, during prayer over breakfast, I was reminded of those who serve us on a regular basis.
People like Victoria, the server at a local restaurant where my little accountability group meets each week for lunch. The moment she knows which of the three of us will be there, she gets our drinks on the table.
Or people like the maids who clean our hotel rooms or the folks who stock the shelves at the supermarket. I know one man who has some limitations, but he faithfully gets the shopping carts from the local WalMart parking lot and puts them back in the store.
Each of these, like the workers in the fields, serves. They labor.
Here's our problem. We move so quickly through life that they are often invisible to us. But we can do something about that. We can be thankful for them when we pray. And we can be thankful to them when we see them.
When is the last time you saw a worker cleaning a public restroom? Many of us would never want that job. It's the kind of work that usually gets noticed for its failures. What if you looked that worker in the eye and said, "Thank you for keeping the restroom clean."
You might be surprised at the kind response.