egends. They did something remarkable didn’t they? Why do we call them legends? We do so because we respect them, but more importantly, we do so because we have no otherwise. This is what I mean. No matter how much you want to bury the legacy of Billy Graham, you just cannot. I have just read a heart-breaking article about this man that bordered on all that went wrong with him and his family. However, that “noise” in that article will not even attempt to cover the fact that Billy is a legend. In fact, if Billy Graham was anything but a legend, he would not have attracted such negative scrutiny from the Washington Post.
One of my mentors that I have quoted quite a bit comes from Australia. He is himself in the twilight of his life. His turning point though was an interaction with Billy Graham in a crusade in Australia. Prior to this, Peter J. Daniels and been branded uneducable. He was by then “an illiterate brick layer” in Australia. Then he heard Billy Graham preach and it dawned on him that everyone is the same in the eyes of God. His translation was that he could become somebody.
Peter J. Daniels revolutionized his life by self-studying History, Economics, Literature and read over 3,000 biographies of great people. His biggest dream now is to raise thousands of Christian Billionaires around the world so that they “can finance the gospel”. Peter J. Daniels himself is a self-made Billionaire with an extra ordinary mind.
That is just one story out of the many hundreds of thousands (probably millions) that the life and work of Rev. Billy Graham has transformed. The interesting thing about it is that Billy never set out to transform millions of lives. All he did was to answer the call that was upon his life. That should tell you and I something. That [ictt-tweet-inline]we are all candidates of being legends.[/ictt-tweet-inline]
In fact, I have this belief down my sanctified soul that God never intended anyone to be second rate. The same realization that Peter J. Daniels had when he listened to Billy Graham preaching is the same that we can have today. God intended, created and expects all of his creatures to be exceptional and extra-ordinary. And guess what? God has a path for us to follow in order for that to be achieved. Many people think that the primary reason why God created us is so that we can be with him in heaven. Wrong. Probably that is the reason why Christianity as a religion is being given a bad rap around the world.
The main reason why God created you and I is so that we can work. To work is basically to become the best version of what God intended us to be. In the process, we fulfill God’s mandate upon our lives and in turn we contribute to the overall large picture which is to give glory to God. Now, giving glory to God does not mean that he is power, praise and worship hungry. No. It means that when things turn out the way he intended, His main purpose of “work” on earth is accomplished.
I know I sound crazy, so let me move away from that subject pretty fast, but I hope you get the point.
Everyone was meant by God to be a legend. How then do we get there?
I am breaking the rules of motivation here by starting with a negative advice. But I will stick with it. Being a legend is actually a side effect of pursuing something grander in life than yourself. This great thing is of necessity linked to creating an impact in other people’s lives. In a previous post, we saw several ways where you can choose to have an impact in life.
You saw this coming didn’t you? I think legends are of necessity people of purpose. I do not know of a legend who did not have some kind of purpose. Now, purpose is expressed when people deploy their potential. I believe that if someone is talented as a poet, their purpose is somehow linked to Poetry. Talk of Shakespeare. What a legend. What do we remember him for? His legendary literary work. For that reason he was born. So if you desired to be a legend, first of all, do not set being a legend a goal. However, discover what your purpose in life is and pursue it to the hilt. The legend stuff will sort itself out.
That goes without saying that purpose is necessarily linked to focus. People keep arguing about multi-talented, multi this and that in life. That is what hustling does. There is a place for hustling but in the long run, one has to be identified with something. What do people identify Lawrence Namale with? They do identify me with Life Signatures more than anything else in life. All my works are centered around this subject and so I work towards it daily. There is not a single day that I have not worked, researched, spoken, written or interacted on matters related to this subject. That is what focus is. Billy Graham is not known for many things. There are many facets of “ministry” in Christianity…but we remember Billy for his powerful preaching (not working miracles). What a man of focus. What a legend.
You can’t be a legend overnight. That is why training is important. The difference between training and education in my estimation is that training is focused on a niche of purpose. Education is all over the place. Training is what will sharpen you. This means that after your education, you need to find some training around an area of specialization. Now, training is not necessarily formal. It could also be informal, but the crux of it is how we face opposition in an area of focus but we learn through it all to overcome and keep going. Billy Graham is not a legend because he knew about crusades from the word go. He knew the general “call” of God was upon him, but he learnt through experience. Life is the greatest trainer we have, and the good news is that we all experience life.
This goes without saying. You cannot be a legend if you are not a committed person. Commitment is one of those rare gems in the world today. It means that you stake your life, your work, and consequently your brand to be identified by certain standards and ideals. If this is kept day in and out with a king size level of consistency, you are going to be a legend before you know it. As a matter of fact, consistency in your work is the greatest King Maker there ever was. I do not know of any other! Commitment calls for resilience when things do not go as planned.
As we celebrate the life of a legend in Billy Graham today, my admonition is to totally admire this man’s work and level of consistency and commitment. My inspiration is to draw back, analyze my life and keep doing what I am doing day in and out. Legend status will sort itself out. I am not chasing after being a legend anyway.