Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Power of One

Watching the Olympic competitions presently underway in England, one observes the performances of awesome, world class athletes in competition with the best of the best. Whether in an individual or team sport, the winning participants often reach their goals measured in tenths or thousands of a second. These athletes draw on resources accessible to them from their extensive training, from their sacrifices and commitment to their sport, and from skills acquired through intensive training. Their performances are built on skills perfected over time to the point where excelling is natural, even taken for granted. They have acquired an exceptional power individually or as a member of a team.

A few days ago, we saw an extraordinary example of the power that individuals can have under the most horrendous of conditions. People across the country and around the world, watched newscasters recount the details of horrendous carnage that was perpetrated during a premier showing of “The Dark Knight Rises” in Aurora, Colorado. The media pounced on this killing field for days recording and presenting the “story” from every accessible angle. However, what emerged, from at least some of these televised reports, was not only the detailing of the acts of the lone gunman, but also the reports of the awesome, heroic and powerful life-saving services rendered by some of these “Batman” movie fans. From this one incident many viewers were reminded of the “power of One.” From where does the courage arise to respond and do such brave deeds with such selfless disregard for themselves? Do we as average men and women of God have the same capacity to excel?