Lessons from Brian: How to Dare Greatly!

Brian Dare Greatly

The greatest gifts in my life are my family and friends.  God has blessed me with some amazing friends who are loving, transparent, and loyal.  They are the holders of my secrets and my dreams.

I am also very grateful for my recent journey of learning to live and dare greatly over the last year.  I talk a lot about “living with purpose” or “daring greatly”, which can sound cliché or like some lofty idea. But, it simply means creating the life that God designed uniquely for you – and living your life intentionally, passionately, and with purpose.

When I think about real-life examples of what that looks like, I think of my friend Brian Roberts .  Brian was one of the most fun loving and passionate persons I know.  He was very intentional about how he lived his life.

So, intentional that he actually took time to create a vision statement for his life.  It took Brian months to carefully craft this statement, because he was very meticulous about the words he included in his vision for his life.  With great care, he developed the following vision statement by which he shaped his life:
To be healthy, organized, focused and disciplined, and a knowledgeable activist who fights for the liberation of African people and the human rights of people worldwide. To be a loving, caring, and sharing African man who is committed to the happiness and welfare of his family and friends.
While Brian did not live up to every word in his vision statement daily – like the one about being “healthy.”  Brian loved food, and he often went back and forth being a Vegan on Monday and eating a jumbo hamburger on Friday, which was a common joke in our friend circle!! Despite this funny contradiction in his life, he pressed to realize the meaning of his vision statement and embodied the overwhelming majority of the characteristics outlined above.
In 2009, Brian was diagnosed with a brain tumor. When we went to lunch a few days before his first brain surgery, we were talking about the meaning of life and comforting each other about the road ahead – of course he was more concerned about reassuring me that he was going to be ok than actually worrying about himself.
And, he shared the following words with me with tears in his eyes that I can never forget:
Of course I would love to live to grow old and see my son graduate from college and have a family, but if that is not in my future…I can truly say that I have lived my life the way I wanted to live it. I have always done work that I love. I have fought for issues that I care about. I am a father. I have a loving family. I have traveled the world. I have great friends. I really can’t think of anything more that I could ask for.

Brian’s words of wisdom represent the true essence of what it means to dare greatly and live with purpose.  Brian lived life the way life is meant to be lived. And, I wanted to share his words of wisdom to encourage other people to live life like Brian did:





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