We all relate to “looking up to another” based on our respect and admiration for him or her as a person and in their achievements. A hero is “a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities.” A role model is “a person looked to by others as an example to be imitated.” Individuals have filled these roles in human lives throughout history. It ultimately does matter who we point out to our children and the affect the same may have on them. These individuals are not perfect; however, they strive for excellence in that which matters.
Our culture has been confused on who best should fill these roles in the lives of our children for a long time. One should never be admired because of wealth or popularity — but rather character — not because they are loud, but because they make a positive difference, often quietly. A person who is known for “acting” is not necessarily one who is known for character; a famous athlete who can play a sport well is not necessarily a good role model.
“You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”Matthew 5:13-16 (NKJV)
The opportunity for our children to observe the legacy and lives of others is a necessary part of their development. It matters whom our children respect and look up to in our contemporary culture, and parents must point them in the right direction; i.e., toward those that set the standard high while assuring our children they can achieve the same.
We were given a great example recently when Judge Amy Coney Barrett was introduced to our nation. She is at the pinnacle of her career, and at this point in time “everything” she has done in the past will come into play. She is a great example to show our children, especially our daughters. It “does” matter what we say and do “now,” especially on social media. We can use her as an example of leading and living an exemplary life of character while not doing things that will one day resurface as a negative.
Barrett is also a model for our daughters that being a wife, mother, and having a career (Proverbs 31:10-31) are something to grasp, to do well and find joy in so doing. The cultural message for young girls has been most confusing for many generations. We are led to believe that women have to choose one or the other, which is a lie. Galatians 6:7 (NKJV): Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. Galatians 6:9 (NKJV): And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.