No matter how old we are, we still want Heroes

We still want heroes in our lives, no matter how old we are. Perhaps that’s why TV programs like Law and Order, Forensic Files, or Blue Bloods are so popular; they are all based on the hero solving the problem and protecting the innocent. These TV programs replace the comic book hero characters of our childhood. Captain Marvel, Superman, and Plastic Man, all of whom protected the innocent and caught the evildoers. What satisfied our need for justice as children still resonates with us as adults. We all want someone in our lives who cares. Despite everything, we still cry for justice for ourselves and the innocent.

Perhaps this is why the murder mystery genre is so popular. Our detective is the hero of the story. Whether he or she, the detective will rescue us from our problem. When the detective appears in the story, we experience a sense of relief–someone has come who knows what to do. Someone who will resolve the issue. We feel protected and no longer vulnerable.

For the Christian, Jesus is their hero. Jesus will do all the things the comic book heroes do and much more. Jesus can work miracles. Just ask him. He will protect us from all calamities. But unlike fiction, comic books, and law and order, Jesus doesn’t always do what we want and ask him to do. So, the experts tell us his answer was probably, “I have something better for you, or just wait. Stop being so impatient.” But these answers don’t satisfy us because we are raised to believe that the hero will take care of the situation right now! Just when most needed. So, for many, when Jesus does not act in the way that they think a hero is supposed to act, they become disillusioned. They stop believing. They “fall away “and look for a hero somewhere else.

Why do we look for heroes? Why do we feel so vulnerable that we need a protector? Is there someone inside of us that is still five years old?
The Jewish Bible often has stories of a “savior” who comes to the rescue of the innocent. The story in Daniel ( I Daniel 13:1-9, 15-17, 19-30, 33-62 or 13:41c-62) is a good example. Two elders (judges) who were highly respected in the community falsely accused Johanna. It is only Daniel who speaks up for Johanna and proves the accusers are lying. No matter how old we are, we would like to have a Daniel around to protect us too.

Perhaps for the younger generation, Harry Potter or Professor Dumbledore are their heroes.

It really doesn’t matter who the hero is, the same characteristics apply: protecting the vulnerable and innocent, fighting for justice, and caring for others.

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