HEROES

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be His God, and he shall be my son. Revelation 21:7

Heroes.  Do you know any?  Most of us can name public figures of this day and days gone by; people who awe us by what they have done.  But who are your heroes.  The persons who get little or no acclaim, no fanfare yet are shining figures to you.   Did they create something unforgettable for you such as a life, a lesson, a moment.  You know who they are.

A hero is the person you and I know who live with cancer and endure chemotherapy and still have the energy to say How you are feeling?  A hero is the father who has lost his job and whose hope is frail yet finds the courage to play with his children and later cry with his wife yet stay on his knees before God.  A hero is the pastor who carries the sorrows of the flock, the weights of administration, and the uncertainty of a budget but remains faithful to a big God and His Word.

Heroes are our military, those who have died, those who are wounded, those in active duty.  They are the family members of our military who bravely stay the course at home with its loneliness, worry, and sorrow.  We see heroes in the community in our police officers, firefighters, EMT personnel, teachers, civil servants, and a host of community members who do not even realize they are heroes.

Grievers are heroes.  They are heroic because of their display of courage. The feat of endurance is worthy of hero status.  Anyone who has lived through—loved through—grief, knows what it takes to continue.  It is far more than human capacity; it is divine capacity and wonder that carries the day.  Complete reliance on God and surrender to His will makes carrying on possible.

Surrender seems to make courage absent.  In God’s mysterious manner, surrender is action that states faith and courage—courage beyond feelings.  Surrender to the will of God and resting on His promises and His strength is not a question of feeling like it.  It is a matter of living it, and not giving in or giving too much weight to emotional swings that are common and normal in expressing grief.

We acquire the strength we have overcome, said Ralph Waldo Emerson.  Overcoming is a process of living, of surviving.  Albeit an unwanted process, it is a strengthening agent in the life of a Christian, who is promised the reward of God because of applying God’s strength to his or her life to overcome.  Have you applied God’s strength and His faith to your life?  Have you encouraged someone lately to look to God for endurance?  Jesus is our model for endurance.  His earthly life showed us all about continuing, when life hurts, and when there are no clear answers.  Jesus is the answer.  God and Jesus long to hear your questions of concern, sorrow, and weakness.  However limp a prayer, your prayers are heard in the heart of a loving God who is committed to your life today, your future, and your eternal destiny.  Believe that.  This is His promise.

Heroes.  We all know who our standouts are.  Never lose sight of the fact that to someone you are a hero, solely because you are you.  Not perfect, not without missteps but because you have surrendered to the will of God and remain willing to endure.

Lord, you said that all things will be given to those who overcome.  To receive all things means that while we are living this human life, we are to endure all things that come our way.  Those things that we expect and those things that take us by storm.  But You promise to be with us, no matter what.  May Your Spirit of Holiness blanket Your people so that we are warmed by the truth of Your promise, Your presence, and receive courage to continue so we may overcome.  In the faithfulness of Jesus, Amen.

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