Heroes Are Brave
Heroes are always brave, but don’t imagine that always brave translates to never afraid. I have found this simple insight from Ralph Waldo Emerson to be profoundly true: “A hero is no braver than an ordinary man, but he is braver five minutes longer.”
There are times when being “braver five minutes longer” means being quiet when you are attacked, which allows God to have the final word. At times, it means standing your ground and being constant, never yielding voice or ground when the defenseless are under attack. Often battles are won, lies are exposed, and enemies are conquered because you are the last one standing.
Life is filled with terrifying moments: we cannot stop the onslaught of fear any more than we can hold back the wind. But we can choose our response. The very winds that cause the eagle to soar later in life terrified it when it was an eaglet. In addition to bravery all heroes have—shall we say—something “more” to them simply because they have attached their lives to something larger.
“A hero is someone who has given his or her life to something bigger than oneself.” —Joseph Campbell
Heroes tend to champion causes, rather than champion themselves. This outward motivation drives them to risk being more daring, able, compassionate, willing, responsible and insightful. Heroes understand there is always more than what meets the eye. Heroes are not afraid to stand up or to stand out. This willingness to rise above the realm of normal makes them appear extraordinary.
Other than Jesus, every Bible hero had strengths and weaknesses…just like you and I do.
Christian means follower of Christ and anointed one. We worship our hero, Jesus, by allowing God’s provision and grace to make us heroes. Listen to Paul’s charge to the church of Ephesus:
God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels (Ephesians 6:10-12, The Message).
Our Heavenly Father anticipated each and every one of our needs and has empowered us to overcome. The finest personalized infallible weaponry awaits us. These timeless elements have the power to win battles that are immediate and in our future. We are in the midst of a struggle between light and dark, and life and death hang in the balance. We must not turn and run in fear.
As long as we walk this earth, the dragon will form weapons that he hopes will prevail against us. The enemy will rage and wage war in one form or another against all God’s daughters. But he will not prevail because we possess swords forged in fire. As the daughters of God draw their swords, he draws back.
Face forward, stand your ground, lift your sword, and let the enemy see the lovely face of a hero.
Adapted from “Girls with Swords: How to Carry Your Cross Like a Hero” (WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group, 2012).