Friday, February 10, 2012

What Happened To The Hero?

     Do you ever look around at the world and its rapid degradation and wonder where all of the heroes have gone? I haven't considered it very much, but today I was filled with such a deep sadness over the state of manhood in the world. I thought back to my childhood (which was not long ago at all), and I am so saddened by the loss of men we can really admire, heroes who simply do what is necessary for the sake of others. From the historical to the fictional to the personal, it seems that everyone is tainted. Perhaps it was always so and my naive mind could not see it, or maybe we live in such wicked times that the heroic is simply impossible now, but either way the world seems a little bit darker without the selfless heroism of yore.
     What happened to the George Washingtons and the Thomas Jeffersons, politicians who did what was best for the country and not their reelection campaign. Men who thought the risk of being hanged for treason a small thing compared to the greater good of a free America. Men who sacrificed, who suffered, who fought on the battlefield, all so the every man could live free in their pursuit of happiness. The men who think they are good enough to lead us have been bought; none have the courage to throw away their political power to do the right thing. President Washington could have been president for life with the unanimous support of the nation, yet he bowed out when he had done his part. Yet now the congressmen hold onto their seat for life, all in the pursuit of more authority, more influence, more power. Men who could have been heroic, now have become greedy power-mongers.
     What happened to the Han Solos? This may sound silly, but for all we know, someone very similar to the famous Star Wars character may have actually lived. Someone who's life was filled with petty crime and self-absorption, yet came to realize that only a life lived for others is truly worthwhile. Someone who, in someone else's gravest hour, came in to the rescue.  Someone who decided they'd throw a fortune away to do the right thing. We are so focused on amassing fortune at whatever cost, even the livelihood and future of others; those in need never seem to come up. Instead of helping those in need up, we trample them on our way to "success".
       What happened to the Dietrich Bonhoeffers, the A.W. Tozers, the Apostle Pauls, the gallant knights, the chivalrous gentlemen? They are in such short supply. Yet surely they are still out there, being heroic right where they live; the kind neighbor who helps out when your house burns down, the family member who holds you as you mourn the loss of your spouse, the fellow Christian who prays for you in your darkest hour. They are all there; we all know them. Heroes that the world so desperately needs.
       You know what saddens me the most? I look inside, and I am left wondering,"Where is the hero that ought to dwell in me?" I don't want to be a hero to be noticed; I just want to inspire some little boy who, like myself when I was young, can see the heroic and know that that is something worth living for; that living for others is all that matters, all that leaves any kind of positive mark on the world. I cannot save the world, and neither can any of my heroes. The world's fate is sealed. But we can help save one person, one little boy or girl, man or woman trapped in the roaring flames of a world afire, begging to be rescued. That is the heart of God. But that is going to take the dedication of a hero. Do you dare to be heroic? Do I dare to be heroic? The world moans even now for deliverance, and I hear it and have to ask," What am I living for?"