What does it take to be a hero?

In truth, not much. 

Sure, there are elaborate heroes who do things to change the world.  But you don’t have to change the whole world, all you have to do is find someone in need, and change their world.

If a child asks you to come play ball, or Barbies, or jump on the tramp, or swing them, or read them a book, or tell them a story, and you stop and do it… you’re their hero.

If you see someone at the checkout counter who didn’t bring enough money, and you step in and make up the difference… you’re their hero.

If you see someone on the side of the road and help them change their tire, or jump-start their car, or pull them out… you’re their hero.

If you see someone having a bad day, put your arm around them, give them a smile, and offer some encouragement… you’re their hero.

If you’re always the one to look on the bright side of things, to point out the positive, to provide energy and spirit to those around you… you quickly become their hero.

If you see someone new in your neighborhood, in your school, in your church, or in your office, and you take the time to get to know them, ask them questions, make them feel welcome, and be their friend… you’re their hero.

Being a hero doesn’t always require heroic effort, just the right effort at the right time.  And usually the amount of effort required is vastly disproportionate to the impact you have.  Sure, there are big things that you can do (and big things that need to be done), but more pervasive are those little opportunities that constantly surround us where we see someone in need, step in, and help.

Our environments are composed of hundreds of opportunities such as this.  The building blocks of heroism. 

So look around you, and be a hero.



A story of a father and a son, true heroes each

This is one of the most touching videos I’ve seen.  It’s been heralded as one of the greatest love stories of all time.  It’s about a father and a son, and is worth watching every second.

Rick Hoyt was born with the umbilical cord around his neck, cutting off oxygen to his brain.  The doctors said he would be in a vegetable state his whole life, and urged his parents to put him in an institution.  But Rick’s dad refused, and brought him home to leave a full life.  Together they have run 950 races, 60 marathons (25 of them Boston), and 6 Iron Man competitions.  In the Iron man, you swim 2.4 miles, bike for 112 miles, then run for 26.2 miles.

Dick, his father, pushes, pulls, and carries him the entire way.  Rick says (speaking through a computer):  “When we are running it feels like I’m not disabled anymore.”

When asked what he’d like to do if he could do anything, his reply wasn’t to play basketball, or football, or hockey.  His reply was that he’d have his dad sit in a wheelchair, so he could push him.

Dick’s simple reply, “I just want to be the very best father I can be”.  In so doing, he sets a powerful example of fatherhood, and presents a powerful illustration of our relationship with our Heavenly Father, who pushes, pulls, and carries us through every step.

After viewing several others, I like this one the most:


shortened version:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f4B-r8KJhlE

Here’s a touching interview as Rick was nominated “Hero”.



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