Who are your heroes? For some reason I've been thinking about that question all day. Maybe because I've run across a few folks today that qualify. Folks that I didn't even realize were heroes of mine until I walked away from an encounter with them. You see my biggest heroes are the folks that, for the most part, the world doesn't even notice. But at the same time those that the world really can't do without. My heroes are not the folks in the limelight, not the people with thousands of followers on twitter, not the ones that are always out in front, doing the BIG things. My heroes are the ones who are content, and actually even prefer, to be hidden...in the background. Those willing to go unnoticed and unappreciated even as they faithfully continue to do and to be all that God has called them to do and to be. My heroes are those that are at home with small and quiet...and choose to give themselves there, because the people they give themselves to and the things they invest themselves in, while important, are not particuluarly the people or the things that the world would choose to give itself to or invest itself in. My heroes are the ones that end up doing the things that no one else really wants to do, or spending time with the people that no one else really wants to spend time with.
My friend Rusty is one of my heroes. In fact, I saw him just today...he was taking up money at a high school baseball game because the man who normally does it (another hero) was in the hospital. Maybe thats why this is on my mind in the first place. Rusty loves people. By that I do not mean he is a people person, which he is, but I mean that he loves people. He makes time for people, to listen to them, to talk with them. He knows everyone's name and knows everyone's story. And every one of those people that belong to one of those names or to one of those stories knows one thing about Rusty...he cares. He simply has one of the biggest hearts I have ever run across. Rusty is also a hero of mine because he always does the thing no one else wants to, or is willing to do...and he does it with grace and kindness...in a wonderfully hidden and incredibly beautiful way. And he not only is content to do it that way, but actually prefers it. He doesn't care about getting credit, or recognition, or applause...he just wants to be faithful. In fact I could go on and on...but even that would seem to cheapen, in a way, the wonderful attitude and compassionate heart with which he goes about his life. So Rusty, my friend, here's to you...you are a treasure...and a true hero of mine. And I hope you never read this...because then it might give your secret away.