I’ve always heard the saying, “the road to hell is paved with good intentions”. If that is the case, then the road of the extra mile is paved with kindness. I had an ‘extra mile’ experience recently. I always run early in the morning – it is a better start to my day. Running, coffee, Jesus, and family help to get each day kicked off the best (and of course Leo is included in the family). I’d take Leo running with me but some of you all struggle with the whole driving thing and you scare me by myself – but I digress. On a recent morning run, I was moving at my normal slow easy pace (read turtle pace) and a truck was coming. The truck didn’t move over and even seemed to veer closer to me. This is not uncommon. So I do what I always do…move off the road. It did seem the truck came a little closer than most so I gave it my – what is wrong with you – gesture. I kept moving forward. This is not unusual in the least. This happens so often, I adjust and just keep moving. I may mutter how I can’t believe people don’t pay attention, but it doesn’t really change anything. But this time was different. In my 12+ years of running on this same road, I have never had this happen – ever. I was moving along and heard a truck behind me – no big deal. The driver slowed down beside me as I ran and rolled down his window. And then, words were spoken I have never heard on a run. “I’m sorry – I didn’t see you”. That’s right – he turned around and came back to apologize to me. He took the time out of his morning to apologize for not seeing me. He must have seen me in his rearview mirror after he passed. I didn’t know what to say – no one has ever apologized. So I just thanked him for not actually hitting me. And I told him it was fine and I really appreciated him coming back. The truth is – I was in shock. I didn’t know what to say. But he made my day. He reminded me that the extra mile is paved with kindness.
Since then, I have been trying to consider ways to travel the extra mile. I have been thinking of ways to spread kindness in unexpected and joyful ways. Kindness is contagious like that. Once we experience it, we want to share it. Where have you experienced unexpected kindness? And even more importantly, how can you share it with someone else today? I don’t suggest scaring a runner and then apologizing. But I do suggest look at your normal day – there are those who need kindness all around. Today is the day to share it.
41 and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile.
Photos included in Devotions are captured by David Cain – The Cain Gallery. Photos are available for sale by contacting The Cain Gallery