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Courage, celebrity and a shallow, trite, meaningless culture

In the age of marketing, publicists and a culture that celebrates uneducated, narcissistic, spoiled, virtueless athletes, musicians and actors, we’ve some how lost site of esteeming people who made the real difference, those who deposit into the social capital of what it is to be a people, a community.
The result?  Broken society, lack of community, isolated individuals, selfishness, greed, crime, substance abuse to escape a meaningless existence – life without God.

Have a read:

Courage
You’re a 19 year old kid.

You’re critically wounded and dying in the jungle somewhere in the Central Highlands  of Viet Nam . It’s  November 11, 1967.   LZ (landing zone) X-ray.  Your unit is  outnumbered 8-1 and the enemy fire is so intense, from 100 yards away, that  your CO (commanding officer) has  ordered the MedEvac helicopters to stop coming in.

You’re lying there, listening to the enemy machine guns and you know you’re not getting out.

Your family is half way around the world, 12,000 miles away, and you’ll never see them again.  As the world starts to fade in and out, you know this is ‘the day’.  Then – over the machine gun noise – you faintly hear that sound of a helicopter.
You look  up to see a Huey coming in.  But … It doesn’t  seem real because no MedEvac markings are on it.  Captain Ed Freeman is coming in for you.  He’s not MedEvac so it’s not his job, but he heard the radio call and decided he’s flying his Huey down into the machine gun fire anyway. Even after the MedEvacs were ordered not to come. He’s coming anyway.  And he drops it in and sits there in the machine gun fire, as they load 3 of you
at a time on board.  Then he  flies you up and out through the gunfire to the doctors and nurses and safety.

And, he kept coming back!! 13 more  times (!) until all  the wounded were out.  No one knew until the mission was over that the Captain had been hit 4 times in the legs and left arm.  He took 29 of you and your buddies out that day.  Some would not have made it without the Captain and his Huey.

Medal  of Honor Recipient, Captain  Ed Freeman, United States Army, died last Wednesday at the age of 70, in Boise, Idaho.  May God Bless and Rest His Soul.

I bet you didn’t hear about this hero’s passing,  but we’ve sure seen a whole bunch about
Michael Jackson, Tiger Woods and the bickering of congress over Health Reform.  You heard about Michael Jackson’s dysfunctional father fighting over $$$ in court, and the latest musical wonder.

But, not about the doctor, the nurse, the teacher, the scientist, the missionary, the community worker, the mayor, the policeman, fireman, the journalist, the dad, the businessman, the mom, the entrepreneur who started a business that she sends all the profits into non-profit organizations.

Maybe it’s time for a society that honors selfless serving men and women who make a difference and bring interest into the account of social capital.  Maybe it’s time to rebirth the patrician class in our society.  These very values are who we, the church, should be.

May we recklessly abandon to such a calling as bringing the Kingdom to our communities.

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