Superheroes are the “it” thing right now. New movies about Spiderman, Batman, the Avengers, etc., etc., etc. come out almost weekly. Personally, I don’t like superheroes. I know I am in the minority on this. My kids really like them too and I’m ok with this, but I want my kids to learn about REAL heroes too. Heroes like Dick Winters of the 101st Airborne who served in WW2. I want my kids to know about men such as Carlos Hathcock (one of the greatest snipers EVER) and Slawomir Rawicz (A political prisoner who escaped from a Siberian Gulag to be rescued in India after crossing the Gobi desert and the Himalayas). More even than men like this, I want my kids to know about men like William Borden and others like him. Borden was called as a missionary to China, but he never even made it to the foreign field that he had been called to because he died of an illness on his way to that place. Before he died he inked the following words into his journal, “NO Reserves. NO Retreats. No Regrets.” To me, William Borden was a true hero.
I also hope to be a hero to my kids! Not necessarily because of some great enemy that I have conquered or amazing feat that I have accomplished, but because I strove to be like Jesus! I have SO far to go, but this is my desire. I want my kids to see that it’s ok to admit when I was wrong and ask for forgiveness. It is ok to stand by yourself in order to do what is right even if no one will stand with you. I want them to see that there are HEROS in this world who don’t wear masks, capes and underwear…outside of their pants and I want to be one of these heroes for them.
This chapter goes in to what a hero is and into what keeps so many men from ever being an authentic hero. One of the biggest things is PRIDE. Pride comes in many shapes and sizes and in one way or another effects us all. This chapter was a good challenge to me to examine myself and see where the seed of pride has planted itself. I can’t be humble apart from God’s grace and I need his help to be the hero that he has called me to be.
When I typically think of the word hero, the picture that comes to mind is a man standing on a high place with the wind blowing through his hair and lightly ruffling his clothes. He looks over the land or city over which he protects and he seems untouchable. This is not the picture that should come to my mind when I hear the word HERO. JESUS, the ultimate HERO was not this at all when he was on earth. I can think of two times when Jesus was lifted up onto a high place like this. The first was when he was being tempted by Satan and would have looked like the antithesis of the picturesque hero. Jesus had not eaten in weeks. I’m sure he looked frail and weak, but he wasn’t! He overcame that temptation. The other time was when he was hanging from the cross next to two hardened criminals. Some hero he must have looked like then! My point is that Jesus was humble. Was he powerful? ABSOLUTELY! But he chose to put that aside so he could die for me. For my PRIDE for my REBELLION against HIM! I spat in his face. I plucked his beard. I pierced his hands. YET, he willingly laid his life down for me and countless others like me! If I am supposed to be like Jesus and Jesus is the greatest HERO that the world has ever known…. I have some work to do!
I hope you will join me in this oftentimes joyful and sometimes hard and painful journey to become a REAL hero. I guarantee you, IT WILL BE WORTH IT!
I will leave you with the following quote from page 147 in chapter 11 of The Dude’s Guide to Manhood.
“In order to be a hero, we need a hero. We can’t even be our own heroes, and we certainly don’t have the energy or the power to make all of the sacrifices our spouses’, children’s and friends’ souls thirst for. We need someone to be a sacrifice for us.”
Shoulder to shoulder with you,