I write today to make a couple of points all at once, which is never a good move. But bear with me.
Check out this lovely guest column earlier this month by my dear colleague David Brown, called “Running a Successful Path.” Like me, he is a recreational runner; and like me, he likes to think about the city when he’s running through it, and he likes to think about metaphorical progress even as he is making progress via his legs and his running shoes. There seems to be something about running that taps into something deeper: the Bible is full of running metaphors, people lace up their sneakers to “race for the cure,” and many of us are inspired to run by others and for others. The phrase “running for your life” takes on new meaning in these contexts, doesn’t it? Then there’s sprinter Eric Liddell’s famous line in “Chariots of Fire” – “I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast; and when I run I feel His pleasure” – and we cannot help but think that running is good for us in more ways than being a useful form of exercise.
But enough about running. I’m also writing because I want to let you know how much of a role model David Brown is to me. His mindfulness to give back with his time and talents inspires me. He has always been a resource and encouragement to me personally. He will be mortified when he reads this, because he is not about personal glory, and I admire that about him as well. Simply put, David Brown is one of the good guys. And Philadelphia and I are better for it.