~reflections~musings~inspirations~insights~and life lessons learned by one who is
whole-heartedly, steadfastly, firmly in HIS grip~

Romans 1:6 "I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes..."

Friday, August 1, 2008

What "HERO" means to me...

The mere mention of the word hero conjures up images of the events that took place on September 11th. We all remember exactly where we were when we first heard the news. Images flooded our televisions and all radio programming was interrupted as reporters tried to describe what was happening. For one brief moment in history America stood still, united in tearful disbelief as lives were shattered. We watched as police, fire fighters, and rescue crews charged headlong into the blazing buildings never to exit. We heard reports of a man, just an average man; fearlessly take charge as a plane full of people sacrificed their lives to save the lives of those who were the target. As rescue turned to recovery America raised her fist and a war began. Our conscience is peppered with images of those heroes going to and coming home from this war.

We have several military personnel in my family. My youngest brother and I chose the Navy, my oldest brother and youngest son the Army. My nephew and many friends are Air Force. One uncle, Army, another the Army then switched to the Navy to be first UDT then SEAL. He was always our family hero…still is.

By definition a hero is somebody who commits an act of remarkable bravery or who has shown great courage, strength of character, or another admirable quality…a war hero. A hero can also be someone who is admired and looked up to for outstanding qualities or achievements…heroes in the war on poverty, aids or any given cause.

As I look over the people who have impacted my life, for that is truly what a hero does…one can not be a hero without an impact; I think of the young couple who lived down the road from us. They had these two really active boys. Then the younger got sick and just would not get well. It was a rare form of cancer. I think of that young mother taking her child to chemo. I think of mother and father sitting at the side of a hospital bed for months at a time while they tried yet another kind of treatment to battle the disease. I am reminded of the first grade teacher who came to his house, on her own time, without pay, to help him stay up with his class. I think of the young parents, the big brother, the grandparents and family sitting in a packed church as a slide show set to music played across a screen, a tribute, depicting the images of a seven year old that spent most of his life fighting a monster that would eventually devour him.

I am reminded of the time when a very close family friend had twins born too early who spent months in ICU so tiny they would fit in the palm of your hand. The doctors and nurses always at the ready in the event something happened. I think about the time I was holding Logan when he quit breathing and his 24 year old mother just reached over and confidently massaged his belly until the machine signaled he was breathing again. I am reminded of her courage and their fight for life each time I see those healthy, active country boys.

I think of a young mother I recently met on blogger.com who anxiously awaited the arrival of her second child, and of the young son with autism. I think of how they gave up their lives and moved back home…the realization that her family would be there for them. I am amazed by her tireless efforts, researching, going to classes, making sure he has everything he needs, just so he can experience life to the fullest. And the faith and frustration demonstrated as she writes with undying hope in and love for our most gracious Heavenly Father. A mother’s heart laid bare anticipating each day…splitting time with daughter, son, husband…Doing all that mother’s and wives do… laundry, shopping, cleaning, cooking, nurturing, working part time, and more. I can see her in the still of night long after the children are in bed searching the internet for the latest information…longing for the day when the word “cure” will make its appearance.

It takes courage on an indescribable plane to get up every day and enter headlong into battle to fight for the life of your child. It takes super human strength to show calm in chaos, encouragement in the face of despair, hope in the absence of a cure. It takes strength of character to keep smiling when the war is lost and only time is left. These are the true heroes, worthy of honor and remembrance. Their stories are not flashed across the news screen, or splashed about in the news paper, their statistics are not scrolling along the bottom of CNN or Fox News Network yet their battle, their war, is just as horrific, just as real.

May we never forget to acknowledge or lend a hand, say a prayer, reach out in support to, and do all we can for those heroes standing right in front of us!

2nd Corinthians 12 [8] “Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. [9] And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, My strength is made perfect in weakness.’”

Romans 8:26 “Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which can not be uttered.”

Romans 8:28 “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

Habakkuk 3:19 “The Lord God is my strength: He will make my feet like deer’s feet, and He will make me walk on my high hills.”

Isaiah 40:29 “He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength”

Isaiah 40:31 “But those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

Psalm 18: 1,2 “I will love You, O Lord, my strength, The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation.”