This past weekend, my hubby and I went to see the Avengers in the theatre. It was a good movie, but it made me think. What makes a hero? Is is flash or style or attitude or intentions? Is it IQ or abilities or money or position? All of those things are nice, of course. We always notice someone with a genius IQ or flashy possessions. We always see the person who is big and boisterous and bossy and take-charge. We go out in droves to see movies and get excited when we catch a glimpse of the “rich and famous” out and about trying to be anything but rich and famous. But are any of these things enough to call someone a hero?
In days past, there were people who acted in a way that made them hold up their heads and stand tall, not because they just beat someone else to the prize, or because they wanted everyone to know that they were not someone to be trifled with, put down, or bested in any way. The reason for their tall posture was the simple fact that they spent a good deal of time and effort doing what was right. Another word for this is chivalry, and you don’t have to wear a suit of armor (or a superhero costume) to practice it.
Did you ever wonder why the Golden Rule is called “golden”? Maybe it’s because your life is so much better when you follow it, when you live by it, everyday. Sacrifice today is almost a dirty word. No one wants to let someone else go first, or let someone else get their way. No one wants to be left behind, or left out. It scares us to think we might be forgotten or passed over. The beautiful thing about sacrifice is that you can only lay down what you have. What we have is a lot, since we have our whole, glorious, finite, fragile, beautiful self. As it turns out, what makes a hero is giving of yourself, completely, for someone else, because it’s right.
For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives,so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves,in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. Colossians 1:9-14