My cousin had one of those Rubik’s Cube toys growing up. You know…those little square things with all the colors that you’re supposed to get to match up on the sides?

I would always just randomly twist the layers and maybe get 2 or 3 squares lined up just right before messing it up and finally just peeling all the stickers off.

Last week I learned something though. And much to the dismay of geeks everywhere, I’m going to let you in on a little secret.

It’s not really that hard.

If you open up the instructions (yes, they come with instructions), you’ll find that there’s a series of moves (the geeks will call them algorithms just to throw you off) that you can make to solve a Rubik’s Cube the same way every time.

There’s no guesswork or judgment involved at all. If you see this, you do that & then it just works. The same set of decisions creates the same result, every time. A perfectly solved cube.

I learned this on our family vacay last weekend while driving the panhandle of Florida. And while I know you’re thinking about how brilliant and gifted I must be to learn how to solve a Rubik’s Cube (and cross #52 off my bucket list), I must say that the Florida panhandle is so wide, a 3 year old could learn how to solve a cube in the time it takes to drive across.

We finally got there, however, and our time in Jacksonville was so amazing it would’ve been worth driving 10 times the distance.

Somewhere between one of the many meals and adventures, I was firing up the grill outside with my sister’s boyfriend when he popped the question. To me, not her—that wouldn’t be near as romantic of a story.

He told me he wanted my permission before he proposed to her. I’d figured this was coming for a while, but before I had a chance to impart some sort of deep, meaningful brotherly wisdom, I just panicked and said “Of Course.”

He told me about how he was going to propose under the same oak tree that his parents got engaged and then he told me when and how he “knew” that he was supposed to do this. And since I’m a little bit of a sap, this story almost had me in tears.

All the excitement got me thinking more about their lives and how amazing they are as people. My sister has a passion for special needs children and her fiance plans on going into ministry. I mean…these people make me look like the most selfish fool on the planet. Why am I trying to sail around the world & accomplish my dream while there are so many other causes that are so much more worthwhile and world changing.

But we can’t all be off feeding kids in Africa, right? We all have different passions. One of mine happens to be sailing, and it seems like every time I start seriously questioning where I am and what I’m doing with my life, I get some sort of confirmation that even though I’m not out feeding hungry children, I’m still doing exactly what I should be doing.

A week or two back I got an email that went something like this…

Bo,

At the risk of grossing you out with a big ole love fest, I just wanted to let you know what an inspiration you are – to me, yes – but I have to believe I’m not the only one.

The week before I saw your blog and donated to your trip, I lost my dad. It has been as awful as you can imagine, but your posts about your relationship with your family and the way they support you have given me comfort. You had the strength to jump headlong from the safety net of your steady paycheck; while I’m not quite sure yet how to live in a world without my own safety net, your commitment to your dreams and to writing your own story are helping me in this process in a way I don’t know that I can properly articulate.

Today’s post about your bucket list was just another affirmation that your place in my life was born at exactly the right time. I kept a journal religiously through my mid-20s. Marriage, family, life got in the way, and I stopped, but I just ordered a new one online this morning, and I know that this is exactly the right time.

I guess what I’m saying is that even though my sister and I are in completely different places in life, I think we’re both exactly where we’re supposed to be. There’s no Rubik’s Cube instruction booklet equivalent for life that assures the same outcome every time.

And there’s not supposed to be.

We all have different passions for a reason. Don’t be afraid to pursue yours.

Congratulations to my sister Caroline & her fiance Jeff. I love you both dearly, and can’t wait see the impact you’re going to have on this world!


Bo is currently living in Orange Beach, Alabama trying to come up with ways to fund a sailing trip around the world. If you’d like to be a part of the adventure, consider sponsoring a mile.