In 1980's being a rock Star meant you figuratively owned the world. Stars were idolized based on a bands popularity. Flowing from their singing or screaming was also a sense of fashion and appearance. Athletes picked up on the whole star thing and they had a guy named Micheal Jordan who led the charge in creating the star mentality for sports figures that surpassed anything up till then. We forget that all along there have been stars - real stars! Some reading this will remember Roger Staubach. Others will go way back to a few coaches like Tom Landry or Vince Lombardi. Stars have been around in all facets of life. We all admire somebody for some reason.
We are drawn to these figures today as we were once drawn to cartoons. Batman, Superman, Spider Man, and even the Hulk were characters that we would emulate as youngsters. My life was confined to basically three stars: Roger Staubach, Nolan Ryan and The FBI! Leading a comeback, striking out the side, and cuffing and stuffing. I picked those three for a reason. Each of them stood and still stand for something of value. Yes each were good at what they did. But there was a character quality about each that drove me to respect and admire them. So strong was this quality that I would pretend as I young boy that was in certain situations and my reactions to such were just like these three. Granted, these were the days when the only video game was a white ball going back and forth across the screen.
Fast forward to 2013 and something interesting is taking place. Mass publicity for years has highlighted the rock stars, the athletes, and the movie stars. Since the 90's these have been the "heroes" of many. Social media and reality TV have escalated their popularity. These figures developed a growing influence of our culture as they spoke out in favor or opposition of their desired interest. Much of the crazy ideas of today stem from a group that makes millions off of publicity. Truth be known, their talents and brain power are limited. But there is a change in the air. This change seems to be gaining steam as we see the truth that publicity often hid in the past, being exposed by mere over exposure. I actually love the irony.
I can sense as I scan Facebook and Twitter this new air blowing. First responders are growing in admiration and appreciation. Our men and women in uniform are admired and cheered for. Those who buckle it up and get it done day in and day out are miraculously becoming heroes. They should have been all along. People see the difference between those who promote and those who actually care and do. The millions made and flaunted by punk type people who would have a difficult time qualifying for any other type of work is about to reach a point of push back. The inside realities of these narcissist cannot compete with people who put their lives on the line daily because they value more than money and fame. Today's growing heroes are people who value life and freedom. They value it enough to do something about it. Politicians cannot escape this new air that is blowing. The truth is slowly but surely being seen. And the reality is gripping every age group. Blowhards will always be there sucking our money and ideas. But heroes are real people who do amazing real things.
The remaining ingredient for this new air to become mature is simple. When we all step back and realize that money and fame are nothing and that life and family are everything, we will rediscover one of the most precious missing values over the past 20 years. The ugly world we live in today, that will be even more ugly tomorrow, requires this simple value of life and reality. For when money and fame cannot be found, values show us what has been important all along. They remind us that we are here for a reason - to reach people with the gospel. They motivate us to action when lives are threatened. Values when present, drive us in positive directions that grow and build. Values give life and create freedom for life.
I read today an article about Tim Tebow. Much is being said in reference to his love for ministry and sharing Jesus. Often Christians have chided those who have ridiculed his treatment in the NFL. But this article highlighted the real issues that Tebow must deal with in regard to skill and knowledge. Now that he has been released, his promotion is limited. And it is now that we will see if Tebow can stand up and do what must be done to maintain his NFL career or not. The reality of all of this slams into our faces - though Tebow accomplished some great things in college and has been faithful in ministry, is he the person who can learn and grow to become a real NFL QB? Or is Tebow like the many before him who through publicity and promotion have hid the truth about his skills/weaknesses only to become a media frenzy with limited accomplishment. Only time will tell.
And guess what? Each of us are in the same spot today. Only time will tell what is the real truth about our values and character. Publicity fades. Promotion lacks real perspective. Self promotion is seldom accurate and often purposefully done to prevent the truth from being shown.
Time reveals the truth in each of us.
And that is a BIG DIFFERENCE!