In an earlier blog, I spoke of the qualities of an ideal woman. A large factor in my understanding of what that would look like was my belief that Christian women should seek men who are willing to simultaneously be leaders, servents, soldiers, and yes; champions. To me, the true measure of a champion is how they react when the pressure comes. The great-souled man is the one who shows up when common sense says that running or wimping out are the safest options.

Examples abound. Mike Bibby. Jimmy Connors. Joe Montana. Winston Churchill. Martin Luther. Moses. Paul.

Today’s hero has so much in common with yesterday’s that it’s ridiculous. Cool under pressure. Willing to take the heat. Willing to lay it all on the line. Willing, in the words of Kipling, to “risk it all in one turn of pitch-and-toss.” Confident in who he is. Prepared to lose, should things go in that direction, but not willing to give in even if they do.

Granted, the great man has more than simple gutsiness. Wisdom, intelligence, and consistency are also very key. Today’s discussion, though, centers on a man’s character. It focuses on the strength of Will that presses onwards despite pain, hardship, or frustration.

This champion must be willing to make the hard choices. He must choose character over popularity. He values a lonesome strength above comfort in weakness. He stands by principle before running away to the safety of pacification. His path is one that does not pass through popularity, or ease, or self-gratification. Rather, it passes through those things which bring true strength, true morality, true honor, and true quality.

Why am I discussing this topic? It is because I am facing a time in my life when I must make some hard decisions. I must choose between the path of the strong and of the weak. I must challenge convention. I must take issues to the next level. I must stop trying to untie the Gordion knot (kudos to whomever knows what that means) and instead be willing to chop it to pieces.

This is not a time for peacemakers, blessed though they may be. As Soloman says, “There is a time to tear apart and a time to sew together, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate; a time for war and a time for peace.” Now is the time when once again, I must be willing to lay aside attainable desires to pursue true magnanimity.

Problems will come. They always do. And yet, loath though I may be to face those problems, I know facing them is for the best. As Seneca says, “If we are lashed and torn by Fortune, let us bear it; it is not cruelty but a struggle, and the oftener we engage in it, the stronger we shall be.” By taking on the very things which so many shy away from, I seek to become what so many wish to be.

Let it not be said of me that I backed off and was weak when strength was required. Let it not be said that my fear was greater than my boldness. Let it not be said that I did nothing.

I try to attain this standard, I think, not because of a desire for honor and glory, but rather because I want to offer it to God. I want a gift that is the best I can give, and no gift that I can offer is greater than this one. It is the best that I have, and is what he deserves to be offered.

I hope that my pursuit of this gift leads to others seeing God in me. I want to make the correlation obvious to them; God’s love in me is the reason that I seek to be this hero, this champion. I hope that one day, someone can look at me and say that because of God in my life, I match what Josiah Quincy said of the Founding Fathers;

“In difficult times, they conducted with wisdom; in doubtful times, with firmness; in perilous, with courage; under oppressive trials, erect; amid great temptations, unseduced; in the dark hour of danger, fearless; in the bright hour of prosperity, faithful.”

Will I be that man? Will I be able to someday offer God that gift? Only time will tell.

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