A few months ago, I took a class where one of the assignments was to think of what qualities we would have if we were fearless and able to accomplish things that, in our own selves, would not be possible. We were told to think of heroes in our lives who already had the qualities we were lacking. I’ve never been a hero worshipper but if it made the assignment easier, I could put my mind to it. My first thought was what would it take to be a hero? I mean from my estimation. Would it be the character who enters a phone booth as a mild mannered young man and bursts forth as Superman, able to leap tall buildings with a single bound? Or would it be a woman who is highly successful and respected around the globe? Or would it be an aging man who has brought millions to hear the gospel, who has written books about being totally sold out to God, and who has lived a quiet life, above reproach? More likely, my hero would be someone I know personally, respect for their wisdom, look up to for guidance, and already seek their counsel.
When we have a hero, what is our ambition? To become like them. We covet their approval. We pursue their advice. We pay attention to their advice and try to emulate their best characteristics. We can’t wait for the time to come when we can get together and have girl talk (or guy talk) And we love them with unconditional love. I have several heroes, people I look up to, respect, would model my life after – at least to some extent, but they are human. While these people have all the characteristics of strong Christian faith and unblemished moral character, they have the vulnerabilities of being human. Today is Easter Sunday. I don’t have to wonder who my super hero is. I can read an entire book about his qualities. As much as I’m able, I want to emulate him.
In my quiet time with the Lord each day, I read a devotional. When scripture is mentioned I read it from the Bible and often write it down. These are just a few of the verses that spoke to me recently about the character I want to emulate.
Unconditional love: Jeremiah 31:3 I have loved you with an everlasting love—out of faithfulness I have drawn you close.
Prayer warrior: Colossians 4:2 Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.
Morality: Proverbs 4:23 Above all else, watch over your heart; diligently guard it because from a sincere and pure heart come the good and noble things of life.
Humility: 1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up.
Joy: Psalm 119:2 Joyful are those who obey his laws and search for him with all their hearts.
Practice the presence of God: Philippians 4:4-9 Rejoice in the Lord! Keep your gentle nature so that all people will know what it looks like to walk in His footsteps. The Lord is ever present with us. Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
I went to see Passion of the Christ when it came out a few years ago. “See” is a euphemism for something that didn’t happen. I spent the greater share of the movie looking at the back of the seat in front of me. You might remember that the entire movie was done in subtitles, but I was paralyzed, unable to look at the screen. It was brutal and horrific to see 200 years later, imagine the experience in real life! Isaiah 53 is the story told before it even happened. I won’t copy it all here, but read it for yourself. It’s the tragedy of the cross. No cinematography required.
Jesus is my hero. He lives in heaven, but he also lives in my heart. Jesus said in John 14:6 “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” My prayer is that Jesus is your hero too. He wants everyone to be saved and understand the truth. (1 Timothy 2:4) He is the unchangeable, miraculous, constant companion, we can look up to, emulate, and love. Jesus deserves our ultimate hero worship.
Isaiah 53 Jesus was despised and rejected. it was our suffering he carried,our pain and distress, our sick-to-the-soul-ness. We just figured that God had rejected him, that God was the reason he hurt so badly. But he was hurt because of us; he suffered so. Our wrongdoing wounded and crushed him. He endured the breaking that made us whole. The injuries he suffered became our healing. The Eternal One laid on him, this silent sufferer, the sins of us all. And in the face of such oppression and suffering—silence. Not a word of protest, not a finger raised to stop it. he went—oh so quietly, oh so willingly. Even though he did no wrong by word or deed. And because of his experience, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins.
He is risen. Happy Easter!
Worthy, worthy, is the lamb who was slain . . . Kari Jobe – Revelation Song