By David Jones, Executive Director Restoration Path Ministries www.restorationapth.org
Derek Sanderson Jeter was born June 26, 1974. Unless you have been completely cut off from the world, you know he is retiring from Major League Baseball after 20 years with the New York Yankees. He carries with him 5 World Series championships, 14 All-Star selections and numerous accolades and records. One of the comments that is often used to describe his efforts is “He played the game the right way.” He earned this by working hard, never cheating or taking short cuts, and showing respect for his teammates and opponents. He will most assuredly be a first round Hall of Fame inductee. For all of these accomplishments and accolades he is most often referred to as a hero of the game of baseball.
There will never be another Derek Jeter and none of us will ever experience the life he has. It is refreshing to hear some good stories about a sports figure considering all the negative and illegal behavior that has been reported in the past few months. There is however another type of hero that goes unnoticed everyday and in some ways the feats he/she has to accomplish are more difficult and insurmountable than any act a super-star athlete has to face. He or she is the Everyday Hero.
Our nature as humans is to be self-centered, self-promoting and follow the path of least resistance and greatest pleasure. To go against this is akin to swimming against the current of the Mississippi River during flood season. As Christians that is exactly what we are called to do. We are called to go against our sinful nature and urgings and pursue the difficult path of Holiness and purity. When we choose that path then we too become the Everyday Hero.
Philippians 4:13 (NKJV) I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
The Everyday Hero is the father and husband whose sinful nature encourages him to watch porn and go to the strip clubs when no one is looking but instead he says “no.” The Everyday Hero is the wife of a husband who repeatedly disappoints her and in her nature she desires to disrespect and dishonor him as a payback for her hurts. She does not and says “no” to this desire because she wants to honor God more than herself. The Everyday Hero is the teenager who wants to be accepted by his/her peers through bullying practices but instead he says “no” to this temptation and “yes” to befriending his down trodden peers. The Everyday Hero is the man or women who struggles with same sex attraction and knows they could find acceptance and pleasure in pursuing these attractions but they say “no” because obedience to God and purity are more important than their own pleasure and the approval of man. The Everyday Hero is the pastor who wants to be successful and have his church grow in numbers but says “no” to his focus upon expanding numbers and “yes” to preaching God’s Truth even when he knows its not popular or “feel good” theology.
The world is full of Everyday Heroes that go about saying “no” to their own self-serving desires and “yes” to following the path of God honoring behavior on a daily basis. There will never be an earthly hall of fame for these individuals. In fact they will often be insulted and persecuted for their heroic acts. Are you called to be an Everyday Hero? You can’t do it on your own might and strength but you “can do all things through Christ who strengthens” you. Oh, by the way, there is a special place reserved for these Heroes and Jesus has already gone and prepared it for you. Be an Everyday Hero today.