Is it Gone?
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer

Each morning, a mentor of mine live streams the sunrise from his balcony, which overlooks the ocean. He started doing this to give us all encouragement when the pandemic started. This morning as I was watching the sunrise, it was just perfect. The ocean was relatively calm, and there was just the right amount of clouds to highlight the red sun peeking over the horizon, welcoming me to a new day. I looked away for a short moment, and when I looked back, the sun was gone. The clouds had completely enveloped the sun. It was so disappointing. My perfect sunrise was gone. As I watched and pondered this sad situation, I started to notice a red glow appearing on the water. A few minutes later, a faint red began to shine through a thinning bank of clouds. Soon a ribbon of gold appeared across the upper edge of the water. No longer a small red ball but a blazing gold ribbon that continued to spread. Soon the wider band of brilliant gold raced from the horizon, across the top of the water, and touched the shoreline.  Within 20 minutes, the sun had defeated its challenger by casting its glow and warmth over the entire scene.

As I reflected on my experience this morning, I wondered what the lesson was for me. What did I need to learn from this experience? Here are just a few takeaways:

  • There are times in life when we wonder where the sun is when in truth, it’s always there. Yes, clouds obscure our view, but the clouds can never silence its brilliance and warmth. We may not see it, but we see the effects of the sun each day as it dispels the darkness.
  • When the clouds pass, the sun can shine with brilliance and race at, pardon the pun, light speed.
  • Goodness and hope are like the sun. The darkness of fear, evil, and worry may try to hide goodness and hope, but they are both there all the time. As the ancient text reminds us, you do not overcome evil with evil; you overcome evil with good.

When I was a kid, the morning host on WSYR radio was a man by the name of Don Dauer. His radio show was called the Wired Woodshed, and each morning Don would play the “Hymn of the Morning.” One of them went like this:

Verse 1

Sing a song
Spread some cheer
There are sad and lonely people everywhere
Be a friend
Show some love
It will lift them from the dungeons of despair


Show a little bit of love and kindness
Never go along with hatred’s blindness
Take a little time to reach for joy
And wear a happy face
Sing a little bit when the days are dreary
Give a little help to a friend who’s weary
That’s the way to make the world a happy place

Leaders are dealers in hope. How about you? Will you be like the sun and spread goodness and hope. If you would like to hear more on this topic, please join Marisa Norcross and me for Episode 157 of The Next Page podcast.

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