Do you know where the whole “go the second mile” concept comes from?
Many of you probably know that it’s from the Bible where Jesus tells us to rock that second mile, but do you know WHY he said that?
It’s kinda fascinating.
Get this: According to Eric Butterworth (one of the great 20th century spiritual teachers who happened to be Maya Angelou’s mentor and wrote one of Oprah’s favorite books called Discover the Power Within): “The admonition to go the second mile relates to the right of the Roman soldiers in Jesus’ time to compel subject peoples to carry their burdens for one mile.”
He tells us that this “was the imposition of despotism, but the subject people could do nothing about it. Jesus indicates an uncommon-sense way of doing something about it. They could break their bonds of enslavement by doing what was demanded of them as if they really enjoyed doing it. And that doesn’t make sense, does it?”
The Roman soldiers could FORCE their subjects to carry their stuff for a mile.
And Jesus says, “Carry it for two.” … “Oh, and act like you enjoy it while you’re at it!”
Hah! Who says that?!
Answer: A very wise teacher.
Back to Butterworth. He says: “When you go the second mile—give more to your work, are more thoughtful and kind to people, become a joyous giver and a gracious receiver—suddenly life takes on new meaning. On the second mile you find happiness, true friends, real satisfaction in living—and probably a larger pay check, too.”
You ever have the sense that you “have” to do something in life? (Me, too.)
Let’s break the bonds of perceived “enslavement” by ACTING LIKE WE REALLY WANT TO DO WHATEVER WE “HAVE” TO DO.
(Did I just shout? Hah. Yes.)
Here’s to outperforming our contracts, champions-do-more style.
See you on the second mile!