What Is a Hero?

What Exactly is a Hero?

Who can be one? A real one?

What is real bravery? Do we really celebrate those who are worthy to be called “heroes”?


Jason was excited to finally move his family to Houston where he took a job a few weeks prior. His wife, Michelle, and their 3 children arrived at their new home. It was Monday. And the sun was shining.

It was only a couple years ago or so that Jason and Michelle adopted their precious children. Everything seemed right. God was good. And He showed it.

Jason was the kind of person who went out of his way to make sure people smiled. His care for others was obvious, and his care for his family was nothing short of remarkable. Sacrificially loving 3 new children is not easy, but Jason and Michelle didn’t settle for easy.

They pursued the enjoyment that comes from giving of themselves for the good of others. No, for the best of others.

Tuesday Came.

Jason kissed his wife and kids and left for work.

The thing about Jason is that while he may leave work at work, he didn’t leave love at home. But on Tuesday, this love for people made Jason something extraordinary. He proved his character and bravery.

As bosses sometimes must do, Jason had to handle the difficult situation of releasing an employee. I’ve had to do this before. Not fun. But Jason was loyal to the mission of his company.

Things took an unfortunate turn as the man stormed out of the office building into the parking lot. It was apparent Jason realized the nature of the circumstance and chose to follow the angry man.

Remember what I said about Jason caring for others? The angry man retrieved something out of his car.

Remember what I said about Jason’s willingness to give of himself for others? The man began walking back to the office building.

Remember what I said about Jason’s sacrificial love?

Jason met the former employee in the parking lot. It was obvious: the man had mud on his face and blood on his mind. However, Jason’s mind was on the people inside the building. And he refused to allow him back inside.

Even when the man revealed what he retrieved from his car.

What Makes a Person a Hero?

What is bravery?

Is it being fearless? Or is it overcoming fear?

I’m strongly convinced a hero is a person who knows how to love. Sacrificial love.

A willing-to-lay-down-your-life-for-another kind of love.

That’s precisely the love of Jesus. He willingly laid down His life for us so we can have real life. Everlasting life–if we have faith in Him alone.

Jason saw what the angry man held in his hand. But Jason had the face of Jesus as he looked up into his eyes.

There many shots from a gun…

…and then a funeral.

Was God Good on Tuesday?

If Jason was a different person–a person who cared more about himself than for others–it could be that many would have been killed on Tuesday. It was apparent the God of Jason made him that way. It was apparent Jason’s faith in His God changed him to be that way.

If Jesus wasn’t who He said He was–the chosen Messiah, the Son of God, the Lord of all the earth–it would be that all of us are doomed.

But I’m not. I’m not doomed. He rescued me. He took those “many shots” for me. I believe that Jesus died on the cross for me, paying for my sin. And in believing (faith), Jesus placed His righteousness on me, wiping out my penalty for my sin. Because of His sacrificial love, I have everlasting life!

Jason’s a hero. It’s because he knew how to love. Not only did Michelle tell me this, but Jason proved it.

Take note.


Dedicated to the memory and honor of

Jason Shay Yanko

May 19, 1975 – June 23, 2015

Jason Yanko

“Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” – John 15:13

Show him around, Kristina. 🙂



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