In Week 20 of 52 Weeks of Gratefulness, I give thanks for John Jefferson aka “J”.
Ok. I’m breaking rules by taking pictures of people in the gym but this is for a good cause and I wanted you to see him in the context where I usually encounter him.
My wife sent me this little quip a couple of weeks ago about how we can either be thermometers or thermostats. We can either take on the temperature of the room (thermometer) or we can change the climate of the room (thermostat). “J” is definitely a thermostat.
Years ago, I’m in the gym and this dude walks up to me out of the blue with one of his fists extended and simply says, “You aight, bro?” We bump fists, exchange greetings and then get on with the next set. That simple exchange changed the entire atmosphere of the gym. He didn’t just do that with me, he does it with everybody. And now, all the guys greet each other. We’ve become more mindful of each other, more courteous about how we use stations and put up equipment. We spot each other and encourage each other. I have made real friends like Daniel Russell all because one guy was intentional and consistent about saying, “Hi” which encouraged me to follow suit.
But, there’s even more about “J” that I’m thankful for beyond this powerful act of leadership. J’s entire attitude is culture shifting. You’ll often find him in the gym early, at 5 AM, fully alive. He’s going all out, often looking like Bane using some apparatus of tortue (elevation training mask, vertical jump training belt, weight vest, etc.), all while singing or dancing or both! He exudes joy.
I’ve had the privilege of getting to know him a little and I know he’s faced some serious and difficult challenges in the last couple of years. But, it appears he takes the same approach to that as he does his workouts, even in the midst of adversity he seems determined to enjoy every minute of life and to take others with him.
He’s also a soldier, serving our country at the highest level (to put one’s life on the line). I see him leading in so many ways that I want to follow. He inspires me to step out of my comfort zone and to live with joy for the benefit of others.
I’m grateful. #52WoG
Originally posted by Paul Luckett to Facebook here.