I've come to realize that "heroes" don't always wear capes.
They are not always front line workers or courageous individuals that put their lives on the line to provide rescue.
According to Wikipedia: “A hero is a person or a main fictional character who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. Like other formerly solely gender-specific terms, hero is often used to refer to any gender, though heroine only refers to female.“
Sometimes a hero is simply someone who lends a helping hand in a crisis, or gives moral support when it is crucially needed. Or someone who restores our faith in humanity. People who remind us that with all the horror, random violence and disconnect experienced during this "new normal", there is still light.
That good folks still exist. That there is reason to have hope.
I met a hero a few weeks ago unexpectedly. In our initial encounter, there was nothing impressive at first sight. Quite to the contrary.
He was a big, husky guy, as I remember. About 6 ft. 250 lbs. wearing casual sportswear with a dark-colored hoodie. He stood a few feet away from me at a local Subway. At first glance, in fact, he came across as someone to be avoided; someone you would definitely not want to run into in a dark alley.
A HERO RIGHT ON TIME…
It was one of those days that I felt the weight of the world upon my shoulders. There was so much I needed to get done; so much to push through, on the heels of personal loss and dealing with the devastation of the pandemic. Not to mention a “to-do” list that seemed never-ending.
I needed a hero that day.
About 8 minutes in, he started counting his money while in line. He looked over at me, paused and then he said: ”Young lady, do you mind if I ask you a question?” I responded, “sure.”
He said, “May I pay for your lunch?” I told him he could pay for my lunch, dinner and dessert! Smiling like I had just won the lottery.
I mean let’s be honest here: how many times does a complete stranger offer to pay for something for someone else?
(And sadly, chivalry seems to have fallen by the waist side in these modern times.)
As a courtesy, I asked this fella’ what my “limit” was. “Order whatever you want,” he said. I got my usual Chicken Teriyaki meal with chips.
I excitedly thanked him, picked up my order and left.
In the course of our exchange, he explained how he likes to do random acts of kindness from time to time to make people’s day. Shut the front door!
I wish we had more of that; instead of people trying to operate from selfish agendas while attempting to get over on others.
I wish we had more of that; instead of all the random acts of violence, all the racial tensions. Instead of all the vicious gossip and hurtful words and acts.
THE WORLD NEEDS MORE HEROES. NOW MORE THAN EVER BEFORE.
HERE ARE A FEW SMALL BUT MEANINGFUL WAYS YOU CAN “RESCUE” SOMEONE’S DAY AND BE A HERO! (CAPE OPTIONAL).
- CHECK IN ON AN ELDERLY NEIGHBOR
- PAY SOMEONE A SINCERE COMPLIMENT
- VOLUNTEER AT A LOCAL CHARITY
- DONATE TO A WORTHY CAUSE
- FORGIVE A GRUDGE
- LEAD BY EXAMPLE
- KEEP YOUR WORD
- TELL SOMEONE “I LOVE YOU”
- SHARE THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST
- OFFER TO RUN AN ERRAND FOR SOMEONE IN NEED
- SMILE AT A STRANGER
As evidenced here, anyone can be a hero. Everyone can use his or her individual gifts, resources and platforms to make this a better world.
A popular adage states: "There's no such thing as a free lunch." Don't believe the hype.
Image credit: Pixabay.com