Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

May 9, 2011

Earthly Heroes

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

The Saturday afternoons of my boyhood were often filled with the matinees at the local theatre.  The feature was always about one of my heroes —  Superman or Roy Rogers!  I suppose I desired to emulate the spirit and character of these men.

My heroes?  I am not sure I called them that, but they thrilled me with their integrity and defense of all that was good.  And I suppose that is a good description of a hero.  Perhaps the more technical definition of the word is someone admired for their courage and one that  is a model for others.

What about heroes today?  I know I often refer to someone as “my hero.”  It is a term I use because of their courage or the character they model.  I wrote a blog about some of these.  (  I do believe that many people are models for us in certain behavior or responses to situations.  However, perhaps we need to be careful using the term hero.

A model refers more to a specific characteristic — an example they give in certain situations.  For instance, we can see a person have a response to a difficult encounter, and we see modeled for us how we would hopefully respond in a similar situation.  A person might model for us a behavior that we would desire to imitate, yet there could be reactions in their life to other encounters that we would not find acceptable.  A hero, to me, infers that everything in that life is what I want to be, while a model is only related to certain characteristics.

Today, many people talk about their hero.  I always caution — be careful, your hero might let you down! During the many years I aided churches in seeking a minister, I would always advise the committee to ask the prospective minister who is his hero.  Interesting, many of the young men would name a certain leading pastor.  Because every pastor is human, there will be flaws.  Perhaps the young man desires to model his preaching or some characteristic after a certain older minister — it is different from a hero!  Heroes seem flawless.  We believe they never disappoint or let us down.  Earthly heroes can, however!

We can be thankful for those models for us —  and we need to be aware that we are always being a model for others.  But let us be very cautious about claiming heroes!  Perhaps those in movies are infallible —  but not so with us earthlings!

But there is One who is the perfect model —  and the greatest of all heroes — the Lord Jesus Christ!  There is no flaw with Him!  He will never fail us!  Wisdom dictates that we not fix our eyes on another human, or attempt to model our life by what we observe in others.  We can always find our hero is only human and imperfect —  a model in certain areas of life —  yes — and we can be thankful for that.

But it is only Jesus Christ that is perfect.  Looking for a hero?  The perfect model?  He alone can be that!

“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.”  (1 Peter 2:21) 



1 Comment »

  1. Dear Pastor Jolly: You are so right. When I was growing up I thought a preacher and his family were to be perfect, but as I grew in the Lord I realized how even those that I looked up to in that way were not perfect, and didn’t claim to be, that was in my mind and my lack of knowledge and wisdom. As i matured in the Lord the models before me have taught and exampled for me in many ways.

    I thank you and Mrs. J. for the models you are and have been in the churches and out in the community. You two are so genuine in all that you do and say and God has used ya’ll in your service and through your children. Thank you!

    Comment by Doris — May 9, 2011 @ 1:29 pm | Reply

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