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The Real Hero

The Greek myths are so predictable. One of the ones that one can predict the ending, without even being related to a prophet, is the romantic tale of Hero and Leander. Hero is the fair maiden, confined to a lonely island, in want of a strong and handsome suitor. Enter Leander on a white horse, except there’s no horse, but the worthy ordeal of an evening ocean swim to be at her side, guided only by her lantern whose light flickers in time with her warm and beating heart. Each night he braves the chilly brine, and swims with a lover’s joy just to be near her. Until one dark and stormy night, his strength is out-matched by the surging billows; he tires, he sinks; he sinks, he dies; the lovely maiden with the lantern, waits upon the shore…….

Yeah, yeah. We’ve heard it a zillion times.

But never a story like this. An ugly and self-centred old bat is marooned on some infected island. A brave and worthy man risks not only his life, but gives it willingly for her rescue. Motivated not by her wealth, nor by the rewards of gallantry, but by genuine love and concern for her soul. He faces death, overcomes it, rescues the hag, blesses and enriches her, and stays at her side forevermore.

That’s our Story! Christ leaving heaven to rescue unlovely sinners. Guided not by our lantern of sincerity, but by his determined Father’s will. Colliding with death and overcoming. Taking his bride, transforming her by grace, and loving her to the end. And what son of a prophet would have predicted that!

DM 8th December 2014

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