Real Heroes

Today’s first official post in the 365 days of blogging is dedicated to the heroes in my life.

Whenever we think of heroes, we usually think of the famous or revolutionary figures that shaped new philosophies, overcame hardships, or conquered injustices. This we do with good reason. After all, we read about them in our textbooks, celebrate their birthdays, hang their portraits in museums and all that jazz.

Yet there are many heroes whom we come across everyday that we tend to neglect or forget to consider: our family and friends. These are people who seem to go about their ordinary lives–work normal jobs, take out the trash, tend gardens, and so forth. But they speak extraordinary volumes of love and courage by doing the very necessary yet often unrecognized things. They are the real heroes.

I am blessed to have the support of many loving people in my life to get me through valleys as well as celebrate the peaks. There’s no better way to start off my year-long adventure than by acknowledging them.

1. My family is made up of heroes. I am reminded of this every time I eat one of my mother’s fantastic meals, take in some of my father’s deep-reaching wisdom, or share in my sister’s ambition for life. What they have given me are the building blocks on how to live my life with integrity and love. They have often sacrificed many of their own wants to meet the needs of those around them. They won’t get much outward recognition for it, but they don’t mind it. Real heroes wouldn’t want it anyway.

2. Friends can be heroes, too. I have come across many faces and developed great friendships throughout my 25 years. There are heroes who have shaped and inspired me somewhere along my journey, and I am thankful for each person. As with the seasons, so have many of them come and gone. But I have not lost them; they are still with me today because of what they have taught and given me. And some, like these guys above, have been with me every step of the way. “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” – Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

3. My pastors are my heroes. Jon and Daryl do so much for the church family with little or no complaint. They constantly check up on me, imparting wisdom on how to live my life with purpose and passion. I am reminded of what really matters, not only by what they teach on Sundays but how they love their wives, children, neighbors, friends, and people in and outside of church walls. These are humble and godly men whose footsteps I want to follow.

Mother Teresa once said, “There are no great things. Only small things with great love.” The greater work then, I suppose, is to give all of yourself into whatever task or person is before you so that you leave something that extends beyond prizes and trophies. Who you are will be written in what you give. And what you give will be a lasting legacy.

That’s what makes a hero.

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