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Men are funny creatures. I say that as I look in the mirror. We want to conquer the world, save the world, do mighty exploits, become heroes, and do things that are considered significant.

Deep down inside we crave to do something meaningful and great. It's a God given desire. It's also a desire that often leaves us frustrated. Why? For two main reasons: The first is that the visions of greatness that we let foster in our hearts are disproportioned to our life experience. The second reason is that our view of heroism and greatness is too often viewed from a worldly perspective instead of from God's perspective.

The world has become smaller in the respect that communication has become more global. We can talk to people around the world through email. We can read and watch stories of the most trivial things happening anywhere on the earth.

Thus, we are able to hear stories of ordinary people running into a building and pulling someone out of a fire or tackling a terrorist and putting him out of commission. Great acts do come out of people that would have never suspected they would do such a thing if the occasion showed itself.

They often receive media attention, a luncheon with the presentation of a medal, and a fond memory of significance that no one can take away. Hearing these stories subtly sprinkles the desire within a man to do great things but, since they are almost never planned and seldom happen, they add no relief to that simmering desire.

The majority of all men's lives are not patterned in such a way as to lead them into the kinds of actions that people would call great. Few of us have jobs or lifestyles that put us on the front lines that lead us to actions of heroism. If that's the case, then what is the purpose of having this inward desire for greatness and how can one satisfy it?

First of all, if you are saying, "I don't really have that desire," my answer to you is, "Oh yes you do!" You may not be presently aware of it but it's in there. It's a man thing that God has put in the makeup of all men. It's there for His purposes.

If so, how can we satisfy it? First of all, it can be satisfied by better understanding it. We can do that by looking at Ephesians 5:25, which says, "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her."

This verse says that Christ gave up His life for the church. Christ died for all mankind but the church is made up of those who have chosen to believe in what He did. That's a huge act of heroism or greatness - the greatest of all.

It took God to do it because it was the only action that would help the entire human race with something they could not do themselves. He left Heaven and all His glory and willed Himself to be born into the earth as a man. He then did for man what man could not do for himself. He lived life without sin.

Then He let Himself be accused and punished as a sinner even allowing Himself to receive the punishment of death on the cross as a sinner. Philippians says,
Jesus made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to death-- even death on a cross!
(Phil. 2:7-8)
He did all that for a reason and purpose outside of Himself. He did it for the specific purpose of helping us because we were incapable of helping ourselves. That's what heroes do! They help others that can't help themselves.

Would you let that statement become a profound definition to you? Heroes are those that help those who can't help themselves. If you think of that definition for a hero, it doesn't take away from it. It just makes it more practical, more accessible, and more ready for us as men to walk out what God put in us.

It offers the relief to the desire for greatness within us - the desire to be ongoing heroes. To help others that can't help themselves. Not to do it for man's glory or honor because true heroes don't want or crave that. They just desire to do what's right motivated by the needs of others. It's something between them and God. That is what Jesus did for us.

Jesus did all this to accomplish for us what we could not accomplish ourselves. He did this to take away the sins and punishment we deserve. That was His act of heroism. But here is the key! It really wasn't just an act or one act of heroism.

His death was only one of a continuous series of actions of heroism. He had to walk out all the actions that led up to that noted act. The rest weren't so noticed. Oh, of course all His miracles and teaching were noted - we read them in the gospels.

But what most don't catch is the day-to-day laying down of His personal will and desires in order to accomplish the bigger picture and will of God. Every choice of His entire existence was tempered by what He perceived was the will of God and the needs of others.

Those were continuing and daily actions of greatness and heroism walked out between He and God alone. No glory. Pure greatness.

He had to live through the daily injustices, put downs, dishonors - all the things that happened because people didn't recognize Him as the Son of God. He lived with this inward persecution in order to accomplish the bigger picture - helping those that couldn't help themselves.

To live the life of Christ means you are living your life for God's purposes and laying aside all the daily injustices that would discourage you and knock you off course.

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All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Author Biography

Tim Burt
Web site: Todays Fresh Manna
Timothy Burt is a pastor, author, and writer. He is best known as the author of Fresh Manna, a daily devotional and online Bible study.

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