Hero: Apply Here

June 20, 2022

Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. 1 Timothy 4:12 NIV

Since the COVID pandemic, staffing shortages seem epidemic. The doctor’s office I called yesterday and had to leave a message had their own message saying due to staffing shortages, if your need is not urgent, do not expect a return call for 48-72 hours. Drive up and down any main road in your town and you will find “Hiring: Apply here!” generously peppering the landscape.

Today an even more dire staffing shortage is in the area of role models. A role model is defined as “a person whose behavior, example, or success can be emulated positively by others, especially by younger people.” You could accurately describe that person as a hero because of the lifechanging impact of their example.

Paul wrote to Timothy, urging him to be a role model for other Jesus followers. Commonly this verse is assumed to challenge young people to live up to the challenge of being an example despite the challenge of youth. Paul recognized that feeling incapable as a role model could be an easy trap because many of the believers might prefer someone older and more experienced. But that’s not the only issue that could lead us to believe we aren’t qualified. How would you fill in that sentence for yourself? “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are ___________________?”

Sadly, we children of God can allow ourselves to be defined by so many identities that should never eclipse who we are as His children. We look down on ourselves and exclude ourselves from being heroic because of identities that should bow to our identities as much-loved and growing children of God. We look down on ourselves because of lack of education, because of physical appearance or health. We feel inadequate because we have been divorced or because of less than the best pasts. Those things don’t matter when God makes a hero.

Read the Bible. Tell me when you find a hero, someone who after all these centuries you still look up to as an amazing role model. See if you find that he or she was perfect in behavior, appearance, abilities, or circumstances. You will search and never find a person who would have felt their identity and resources made them perfect. It never is. Our identity as God’s children, our identity in Christ, is what equips us to be role models. As we follow Jesus, He makes us people worth following.

Someone around you is looking for a hero. You have what it takes.

  • Lord Jesus, help me be like Timothy. Regardless of the things I find to be less than the best, You can help me be an example in speech, conduct, faith, love, and purity. I am available. Amen.