Just a few weeks ago, the world sat witness as Capt. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger was forced to set his damaged airliner in the frigid waters of the Hudson River in New York City. Amazingly, every person, passenger and crew, was able to exit the aircraft safely and lived to tell the tale. It didn't take very long for "Sully" to receive a new title, that of Hero. When asked how he felt in performing such an amazing feat, "Sully" simply replied that he only did what he had been trained to do.
Perhaps it was just timing, but it seems to me now that this nation needed a hero and "Sully" was the right man in the right spot at the right time. We rally around heroes for in them we see something bigger than ourselves.
When I was growing up, I had my heroes. One of my favorites was a war hero. Sgt. Alvin York was a trouble-maker before World War I started, but became a Christian and a contientous objector after he was drafted. He didn't want to hurt anyone, and was appalled by the idea of killing others. However, when he and his men were trapped and being killed one by one by Germans, he reluctently picked up his rifle and began shooting back. He was forced to kill 28 Germans singlehandedly and was responsible for capturing 132 others. When asked what led him to do something that was against his beliefs, he replied that he couldn't just sit there and watch his friends die, that he only shot back to protect his men.
Since the incident on the Hudson River a few weeks ago, I have been thinking quite a bit about heroes. Most often when we think of heroes we envision men at war, fighting against overwhelming odds, and more often than not, dying in the effort. But heroes are much more than men with guns. Allow me to share with you an example.
A couple years ago I was able to perform a funeral for a member of the church who had been in a nursing home for several years, suffering from heart problems and the onset of Alzheimers. In his prime, this gentleman had been an avid high school sports fan, and for many years, he was the announcer at the local football games on Friday nights. Some considered him the local team's biggest fan. Well, when the football team found out that he had been placed on hospice, they purchased a football with their own money, had each member of the state championship team sign the ball, and a delegation of players traveled to the nursing home to present the autographed ball to their biggest fan. A few weeks later when he passed away, many of the team attended the funeral. In my eyes, these boys were heroes...to a dying man, to his wife, to their parents, their coaches, their peers, and to God.
So my question to you today is this...who is your hero? Who is that person that has touched your heart with duty above and beyond the call of normal men or women? Who do you look up to, and perhaps hope that someday, you can live up to their expectations? The world is looking for a hero today, another "Sully" who is just doing their job, but with amazing results. :-)
School has Begun!
4 years ago