Becoming famous is all the rage in our digital technological age. Spelling bees, Australian idol, voice, etc. etc. are so popular as we add heroes and super heroes to the traditional pop stars or sports heroes. Strange how often such stardom ends in tragedy for many in the entertainment industry or how for the sports heroes they are left battered and brushed as adults with broken bodies and little left to aspire to is a common story.
HEROES OF CHARACTER.
Jane and I saw the movie, Bridges of Spies. Tom Hanks played the roll of an honourable solicitor who stood resolutely for what he believed was honour, truth and justice in the face of political intrigue and deception by governments of the cold war super powers. The real life character he played was a truly inspiring person one would want to aspire to. Those who stand tallest in the human family, so often have to face the most challenging and perhaps chilling circumstances with abnormal courage and conviction.
Maybe you have some historical figures, whose story you know of and inspire you.
The religious traditions of the world have all noted the great figures of spirit: saints, sages, prophets, reformers, etc. etc. For the Christian faith we have a great and long tradition of honouring those unique characters of faith we call saints. Of course the earliest disciples have all been honoured for their extraordinary witness, many to the point of death for the sake of the gospel. Such a tradition has continued down through the centuries as we have been inspired by the Christ like example many have displayed.
Today we mark as All Saints Day. We are reminded of the life of many inspirational people who followed extraordinarily in the footsteps of Jesus.
Why we celebrate such a day is because…the way of the saint is not really about people who are that different to ourselves. They just faithfully walked in the way of Jesus as best they could but found in the spirit, God could shine brightly through them. Sometimes it meant they did achieve extraordinary things that they never imagined they could.
Sainthood is not so much about what we achieve, but about discovering who we really are. How often we say we are made in the image of God. By this we are alluding to the fact that we are simply life and that God is life. Life is good and it is true and it is beautiful. Can we humbly be such people? Anything else is to deny ourselves.
BEING OR DOING
The world presents many opportunities for people to accomplish many and sometimes great things, but if that is the only purpose of our life then it becomes shallow. The quality of life is what must be the foundation of all else. We must be as much a human being as we are a human doing.
THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD
If we are made in the image of God, we should be aspiring to claim our heritage. The more we discover this truth the more we will discover that we are like Jesus. His loving, gentle yet resolute character will inspire and encourage others. The light of the world that Jesus was, will radiate through each and everyone of us.
And to be the light of Jesus you don’t have to be the brightest, just beautiful in spirit, true in mind and good in heart. That’s why my Bishop in Canada called us all saints, because this is the daily journey we are all on.