Friday, September 08, 2006


9/10/06 Heroes Day
Pathway Community Church, Des Plaines, IL
by Judie Abernathy

If you nominated someone to be our local hero then you’ve read a few of the definitions of a hero already. The dictionary says that a hero is: a person noted for feats of courage and nobility of purpose; a man of great courage and nobility. Sometimes it takes courage to just do the right thing. It’s not always easy to stand up and do the right thing

I think our definition of a hero may change as we mature.. When asked, Children usually think Super Heroes – Batman, Wonder Women, Spiderman!

I thought it would be interesting to ask some young people who they considered a hero and why.

I tried to explain what a hero was in these simple terms:
•Someone you look up to
•Someone you respect and admire
•Someone you think has done something great
•Someone you want to be like.

I found the results quite interesting…….

5 Yr. old Jasmine immediately said God was her Hero. Proof those kids get it! Even when we don’t think they are paying attention.

My 10 year old grandson said Babe Ruth was his hero because he hit the most home runs in one season. Talent can make someone a hero.

My 12 year old grandson said his hero was “the Undertaker”(of WWE fame)………….he admires him because he loves his sport and has been in the same business for 16 years. Consistency and make a hero.

Others found it a little more difficult to actually think of someone they thought of as a hero. Even I had to ask myself – exactly who do I admire? Who do I want to be like? Who made a difference in my life?

The high schooler may think the player that scored the winning touchdown a hero.

The 6th grader may think of the classmate that helped pick up his books after the bully knocked them out of his hands as a hero.

If you’re a Cleveland Indians fan, you might think Kevin KOUZMANOFF is a hero. Just this week, Kevin hit a grand slam home run on the first pitch he saw in the major leagues.

We probably wouldn’t even be talking about heroes today if it weren’t for Sept.11th. That day, people just doing their jobs – police, firefighters, office workers - became heroes. They ran toward the disaster as others were running away. Many didn’t survive.

To this day our military are fighting the war on terrorism so we can be safe. Some of our extended family are in Iraq at this moment. Pray for the safety of these, our heroes.

The Bible also tells about some heroes:
Moses led his people out of Egypt.
Paul brought many people to the same Christ that he had once persecuted.
Biblical heroes!

We often look at people who have done remarkable things and think, "WOW, I could never do what they do."

This is where the error is in our thinking. If you look around, there are heroes everywhere.

* The teacher that uses her own money to buy school supplies for her students that otherwise wouldn’t even have the basics for school.

* The young man that changes a flat tire for the pregnant woman on the highway.

* The family that shares their home with foster children

* The child that gives half her lunch to her friend who has none.

It’s all about perception. The person that meets Your need is Your hero!

Yes, a hero may be someone of outstanding ability, courage and bravery…..but are they superior beings?

Christopher Reeve said, "I think a hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles"

So you see, heroes are really just ordinary people like you and me who have done extraordinary (and some not so extraordinary) things. Your definition of a hero may be different than mine. I wonder how many people start out thinking – "m Going To Be A Hero!"

I doubt that as Abraham Lincoln went through all those failures in his life he thought to himself ……but someday I’ll be a hero.

When Albert Medina dived into the Kankakee River a few weeks ago I’m sure he didn’t have time to think about being a hero….He died that day trying to save a 4 yr. old boy he didn’t even know.

Jason Thomas didn’t consider himself a hero until he saw the movie World Trade Center. He was one of two Marines depicted in the movie searching the rubble with flashlights shortly after the buildings came down. The two Marines are credited with saving the 2 New York police officers featured in the movie. The producers didn’t know who he was until the movie was released and he came forward. Interestingly – the actor that portrays him is white. Thomas is black.

So here’s my challenge for you today. Start now on your journey to be a hero. You can be a hero to someone. Believe that you can be a Hero!

• Cook a meal for someone who is ill;

• Shop for your elderly neighbor;

• Carry groceries up the stairs for the mother who has small children in tow;

• Donate food to a food pantry.
Can you see your life as a hero? Look for ways. Commit senseless random acts of kindness. You never know when you will be considered a Hero by someone. God opens doors for us all the time. Whether we choose to walk through that door determines whether you will become a hero.
Being a hero begins with one humble act.



Anonymous Grace said...

This should be written where more people can read it, like a newspaper or magazine.

4:08 PM  

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