Sunday, April 14, 2013

If Your Friend Falls Down, Be Sure To Help Him Up

"If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!"
Ecclesiastes 4:10

April 14, 2013

Today I am 198.0 pounds of rolling thunder.

I'm a sucker for anything that will get me down the road better, faster or just less slowly.

Sometimes I feel like Kevin Costner's character from the movie "Tin Cup" when I suck air through my lung exerciser or comb the Internet looking for tips on how to run more and walk less.

I like the pithy little sayings people use to motivate them to get out on the road. Maybe it makes us feel like kindred spirits as we beat feet on the neighborhood streets. Or maybe it speaks to a part of us that knows we'll never be an Olympic champion, but that's OK because the runner is the reward.

Recently this inspiration floated into my in-box to remind me how important the person within is when compared to the world around us.

"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us."
 Ralph Waldo Emerson

Funny, isn't it, that the universal themes remain the same no matter how smart or advanced we thing our culture has become.

Yesterday I pounded out six miles on my familiar loop. It was only the second time I've run the route since the snow has thawed, and while my running was better there was still a fair amount of walking involved. The important thing for me was to enjoy the moment, move my legs and feel my body getting stronger.

What lies behind us we cannot change. What lies in front of us we cannot control, nor would we want to manipulate our fate.

What we can control is who we are and how we navigate the challenges or our lives. The truth today is the same as it was in the days when Ecclesiastes was written. The measure of a person is the integrity with which they live their lives.
Kara Goucher

We all fall down in our lives -- physically, socially, mentally and in our humanity. The measure of a true friend is one who picks you up in your darkest hours. Sometimes life surprises you when you learn who your true friends really are. Sometimes you surprise yourself by being the kind of friend who reaches out in a fellow human being's darkest time.

I'd like to think as I run down the road -- either in life or on my daily jog -- that should I fall, a friend would be there to help me up. 

So if you see the world's slowest human out there on the road, pick me up with a little wave.

Here's one parting bit of wisdom I'll leave you with thanks to marathoner Kara Goucher.

"The journey isn't always perfect but always worth taking."

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