Life is filled with many lessons. One such lesson took place not so long ago when I was running in the dark, training for my 80th marathon.
It was early in the morning. I was nearing the end of a long run. My mind was starting to play games with me. Mental fatigue was setting in. I was ready to stop my run and walk…..and then I looked up.
This is what I saw….. and it changed my day.
A beautiful Christmas tree, decorated with bright, symmetrical lights, happily illuminating the inside of a home next to the running path I often pound upon for hours on end, as I increase my endurance.
I stopped briefly and admired this tree. Although it was not my own tree, it gave me the mental lift I needed at that time. I was reminded of the iconic tree that lights up Rockefeller Plaza each Christmas in New York City. The New York tree has given joy to millions around the planet.
However, the tree in my neighborhood, although not admired by millions, gave me the energy I needed at that moment.
A few days later I dropped by the home and thanked the owners for brightening up our neighborhood so unselfishly. They appreciated that.
What is my point? Sometimes we do things for our own families (in this case the family had a beautiful tree up in their family room, probably not doing it to get a thank you from me)……but we also bless others by blessing our families.
It amazes me to know that being a good parent and a good spouse can have a ripple effect beyond my home. This Christmas tree taught me a lesson of Life by Example at its best.