I've known Grant Boone for well over a decade.
The guy exudes talent.
As a writer (check out his regular column, "Grant Me This," on the PGA website at http://www.pga.com/news/grantmethis/), a sports broadcaster (working with the Golf Channel and more recently TNT Sports) and a "life philosopher," Grant possesses rare gifts that always end up touching you where you live.
His ability as a communicator is just about unmatched. From his voice to his brain, this guy cooks!
But, what makes Grant so special to the people who know him best is his heart, his faith and his personal commitments in life.
Grant is a family guy from start to finish. Nothing is more important to him than his wife, Amy and their children. His entire life is wrapped up in what is best for them. Many tough professional decisions have been made with this number one priority clearly in mind.
Grant is the kind of guy you just want to know and be around.
But, what really impresses me is his concern for folks who are "down and out" in everyone else's worldview.
No telling how many friends Grant has.
A good number of them are poor and homeless. Grant and Amy continually reach out to and engage people who find themselves in trouble in their hometown, Abilene, Texas.
I had an hour with Grant last week while he was in Dallas and listened as he spoke of some of these special people who continually concern him. I listened to his vision for change in the lowest income neighborhood in Abilene.
Every time I am with him, I come away inspired by his hopes and amazed by the kind of vision he brings to the challenge.
I guess my main point here is simply this: everyone can make a difference in the lives of people who battle poverty. It is not really a matter of specialized knowledge or exotic training.
It is all a matter of will, priorities, determination, surrender and openness to others.
Grant brings that to his daily life.
He is an extraordinary, ordinary guy with almost unlimited talent and many intriguing interests. But, he never loses sight of the direction his faith provides as he makes his way through his life.
No surprise then, that he finds himself involved as a friend among the poor.
Grant teaches me that everyone can make a difference and that living with an open heart can be transformative, personally and in a community.