The Goal: To Fearlessly Pursue Life
Point to Ponder:
Do you wake up every morning excited to pursue life?
I’m only speaking for myself of course, but last Sunday when I learned about the death of Kobe Bryant, his daughter, and those with him in the helicopter, my heart broke. While we are a basketball family and I was sad the basketball world lost one of the best, more than anything I hurt deeply for his family- his wife and now three daughters. Whether or not you were a NBA fan during the Kobe era, there is one undeniable and inspiring truth about him, and that is he fearlessly and passionately pursued being the best at everything he did, which included husband, father, basketball player and the list goes on and on. He called this the “Mamba Mentality”, which I never fully comprehended until now.
Given his 2003 sexual assault charges and indisputable inappropriate behavior--calling him a passionate husband may seem laughable, however with every passing year I find myself less judgmental and more empathetic for the mistakes people make, and have the utmost respect for anyone who takes the criticism, responsibility for his/her actions and sincerely tries to do and be better. I believe this was Kobe Bryant.
And for his wife—I don't have words, except to say that her ability to forgive, love, and support despite extreme betrayal is inconceivable. To think of everything they overcame as a couple and family is truly remarkable.
Prior to last Sunday, I only knew Kobe as a fierce competitor who had unparalleled work-ethic which led to 5 NBA Championships. This resume is plenty impressive, but what I’ve since learned and find refreshing and beautiful is at the age of 38 and following a twenty-year career in the NBA (which is an extraordinary physical and mental feat), with no regrets, he humbly and graciously retired, to then enthusiastically re-fire by diving into his family, becoming a champion for women, coaching his daughter’s AAU basketball team, co-authoring children's books with Alchemist author Paul Coelho, and even winning an Emmy for his retirement letter/poetry titled, Dear Basketball. He continued to fearlessly pursue life, try new things and implemented the Mamba Mentality off the court, which he described as, " trying to get better every day."
Was I a Kobe fan before? Sure. I respected him for his leadership, talent, work ethic and championships. Am I a Kobe fan now? With 100% certainty, YES! but it’s because of what he did and where he placed his value off the court--when the cameras turned off.
Over the course of the week I’ve listened to many people speak on behalf of Kobe’s life and legacy, but out of everything I’ve learned, my favorite and most comforting is that last Sunday and prior to getting on the helicopter, both he and his daughter attended 7:00 a.m. Catholic Mass and received Communion.
It's easy to see I’m very inspired by Kobe Bryant and his approach to life. As we step into February, per Kobe's quote listed in the picture above, I encourage you to make it a goal to wake up every morning in fearless pursue of your husband, children, family, community, friendships, career, health, your faith, hobbies, and anything else that you love and lights you up; implement the Mamba Mentality; and dance beautifully in any and every box you can. This will change your life! (below is an emotional and touching video I know you will enjoy)
Determine what boxes you want to pursue and dance in, and start dancing now!
Gracious God, Thank you for our life. Thank you for second chances and redemption. I pray God that you comfort everyone effected by the helicopter accident and continue to shine light on the lives lost. Help us God, to not take one day, person, or relationship for granted. Give us the courage to passionately pursue this incredible life and dance every chance we get! It is in your most precious and Holy name I pray, Amen.