Good and bad

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In his latest blog, Shane Hughes considers the role of heros in society – fictional and real!

With a snap of his fingers, Thanos got rid of half of all life in the universe. With a poisoned apple, the witch tried to kill sleeping beauty. To be king, Lord Farquaad tried to marry Fiona. ‘Bad’ people doing bad things. In so many films and books there is this portrayal of a wrong needing to be made right by a ‘hero’ who comes along and saves the day.

No matter what culture you are in, humans always seems to have this innate sense that there are people who do wrong, and a need for those who stand up to stop them. We envy these people, we route them on, we cry for their loss and we feel their pain, but in the end, we always expect for the ‘good’ guys to win.

We then close the book, or finish watching the film, feeling somewhat satisfied that the world has been made safe by the actions of the ‘good’ guys, even though it has all been fictional. But what about real life, what about us?

Day in, day out, we wake up, go about our day and then come home to do it all again the next day. We don’t see ourselves as heroes. Neither do we see ourselves in positions where we can become heroes. That’s for the big screen. That’s for people who live extraordinary lives – not us.

Think you need a cape to be a hero? Sometimes being a hero is nothing more than giving someone your lunch…you never know how many mouths it will feed.

But have a look at these heroes. What did they do? Before they won the battle – before they engaged the enemy – there was always a choice. A fork in the road. A point where they had to choose – to do what is right – or to choose to do nothing. Stand up to the enemy – or turn away. Protect the innocent – or leave them to their own devices.

Throughout the bible we read about certain leaders – heroes of their time. Joshua, David, Jonah, Peter. All of whom led their family, their people or a nation against the ‘enemy’. People who showed courage and strength. In fact David is called a ‘man after GOD’s own heart’. Yes, they made mistakes and they had failures. David committed adultery. Jonah ran away. Peter denied.  But time and time again they showed the ‘hero’ inside themselves because of the choices they made. They chose to go ‘right’ instead of ‘left’. They chose to think ‘heavenly’ instead ‘earthly’. They chose to carry on, instead of giving in. Each day they faced life – real life. The struggles, the doubt, the worry, the finger pointing, the laughing, the name calling – a bombardment on the senses.  But what made them the ‘hero’ was the choice they made when they came upon that fork in the road.

But what about you? Imagine going to work, and you hear a colleague being belittled. You have two choices; laugh along – or tell people to stop. Are you saving the world? No, but what do you think that colleague will feel, knowing someone is standing up for them?

How about going to work and your company is not dealing honestly with a customer? Do you tell your boss? Do you quit the job?

Jesus says to us, “Wide is the gate to destruction, but narrow is the path that leads to life.” Matt 7:13-14. Being a hero is not always about ‘jumping on the grenade’ to save others. Sometimes the simplest act of getting out of your seat on the bus for the elderly, or holding open a door for someone, or being honest when you are given the wrong change, can proverbially restore the ‘balance to life’. It shows the world that ‘heroes’ still exist.

Think you need a cape to be a hero? Sometimes being a hero is nothing more than giving someone your lunch…you never know how many mouths it will feed.

Shane is married to Lydia and they have 3 young children. He has been a disciple of Christ for over 20 years and is still learning! He is currently one of the leaders at Colchester Road Baptist Church. His passion lies in men’s ministry and is one of the coordinators for Christian Vision for Men in Ipswich. 
The thoughts expressed in this article are those of the author and not necessarily those of Network Suffolk