Recently my wife and I watched "The Longest Day," the epic WWII movie about the allied invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944. I have never seen a movie with so many stars in it. Evidently, every notable actor of that era felt it was his patriotic duty to play a role.
After I viewed the movie, I was struck by the fact that there was not really a leading character. With all the stars, there's not a star! It's a movie that simply chronicles the exploits of many heroic and courageous individuals and platoons. The general (Eisenhower) who after the counsel of his advisors reluctantly gives the order for the invasion. The soldiers who secure the bridge. The paratroopers who take the village. The thousands of unnamed soldiers who are gunned down trying to secure a beachhead. The army engineers who finally make a way from Omaha Beach.
Who's the hero of the story? No one. Or even better everyone. Everyone is a hero!
"The Longest Day" is a powerful picture of the church on mission. Ultimately the war against the forces of darkness is going to be won because individual Christ-followers live courageously and sacrificially for the cause of the gospel. The mother who will not stop praying for her wayward child. The student who loves the geek to Jesus. The church planter who dares to believe the gospel can reach that neighborhood. The computer programmer who chooses to take his skills to the mission field so the scriptures can be translated more efficiently into new languages.
To be sure, we live in a celebrity Christian culture. Certain names make headlines. But, in the end, it will be ordinary Christians doing their duty in the trenches of life that help the church accomplish its mission. Thank God for EVERYDAY HEROES.