Pour the concrete

November 30, 2022

By Jeff Becraft


During the summers of my 18-21 years, I worked as a laborer for Glen Construction where my Dad worked for years. One summer, we were building an office building complex with a parking garage. It was time to pour the footers.

The sky that morning was grey and cloudy and they were calling for a chance of rain. You don’t want to pour concrete in the rain because it can compromise the concrete. We were all wondering if we were really going to be pouring the footers that morning or not. (If you order the concrete for that day and then the skies start gushing down… it’s a loss of money. You can’t do the job but you still have to pay for the order.)

Then the concrete trucks all began to show up and line up on the construction site. And we poured the footers.

I asked my Dad about it later that night. He said something I have never forgotten: “You have to pour the concrete. You can’t wait around to see what will happen. If it doesn’t rain, then you have missed a whole day and that puts you a day behind on the job, which puts everything else behind.”

I wonder how many times in life we are waiting around to see what will happen.

Sunday was my wife’s birthday. Our son called several days earlier and wanted to know if we wanted to meet halfway (they live in NC). His wife was tied up with other responsibilities but he could come with the two grandkids and we could meet in a park so the kids could run around.

Brenda was game and we began making plans for the day. There was one snafu – it was supposed to rain that day. Josiah said to me, “We’re not afraid of rain… we simply bring an extra set of dry clothes.” I suggested that if it was really raining, we could go to the mall so the kids could run around (a wimpy option).

Sure enough, as Sunday unfolded, it was raining. As we drove up the road, it was raining even harder. Like cascading down. We talked in the car that if it was raining like this, we really didn’t want to be standing outside at a park.

We drove on.

We arrived at Cleveland park in Spartanburg (which is one the coolest parks I have ever seen and has the best playground I have ever seen for little kids). It had stopped raining at this point. The equipment was still wet but that didn’t slow us down. Then the clouds began to break up and before you knew it, it was blue skies and the sun was beaming down.

It turned out to be a magnificent day.

What if we had waited… what if we had said that the conditions weren’t just right… let’s reschedule for another day… or let’s just go the mall (let me tell you, the mall would have been no comparison to the beauty of this park – the trees, the skies, the wind blowing the leaves across the ground, the joy on Brenda’s face as she was running around the playground with two of her grandkids…).

If we had waited… we would have missed out. You have to pour the concrete.


Jeff Becraft is the Interim Director of Our Place of Hope and the Director Emeritus for Youth Corps and has dedicated much of his life to helping shift the vision of people’s lives. Youth Corps is a life-changing leadership development experience that inspires high school students to be leaders in the Midlands and beyond. You can connect with Jeff at [email protected].