Do you remember that question they asked in elementary school? You know the one: “Who’s your hero?” Well, the good Christian kid probably shouts, “Jesus!” but if we are relegated to people who are not God, it gets a little harder. As a kid, I would probably go with Laura Ingalls Wilder. If you asked me today, I’ve got a few lined up, from people I know in real life to celebrities (they’re celebrities in my mind, anyway) I’ve never met.
I’ve got to say, though, one of my favorite people on the planet (even if I’ve never met her) is Jamie Grace. If you don’t know who she is, she’s a fantastic Christian singer. (Her song Every Bit of Lovely is literally the story of my life. . . .)
She’s made me feel a whole lot better about being single. She’s twenty-three and proud to be a single lady herself. A lot of her songs are counter-cultural in the “you don’t need a boyfriend” and “wait until marriage!” aspects.
She’s wild and goofy and fun and all-around awesome. She embraces who she is, and I love that.
The thing about her that most astounds me, though . . . well, there are a few things: Tourette syndrome, OCD, ADHD, and anxiety. Wow. But those don’t define her. What defines her is the way she takes these things to God. They’re something she has to deal with every day, and yet she constantly gives God glory. And despite all these struggles that might make being on stage difficult, she’s a singer. If that’s not inspirational, I don’t know what is.
Recently, Jamie’s been going through some hard things. Her mom is sick, her asthma is acting up, and she’s anxious about recording new songs. So what did she do? She asked her friends and her fans to pray for her. If you have a moment, I think it’s worth your time to pray for a young girl who has the bravery to ask for help when she knows she needs it.
Jamie Grace is my hero, not because she’s invincible and unbreakable, but she’s only a human. She has struggles, and she’s honest about them. Look, I’m an author; I know that readers don’t relate to a “perfect” hero. We all have failings and problems and fears and worries, and we tend to shy away from those whose lives seem all put-together. Seeing someone overcome adversity inspires us, and rightly so.
Jamie, if you ever read this, I love who you are and everything you do for God. You’ve inspired and amazed this young girl. I appreciate your strong stances for the faith and the way you share your true self with us. No matter how you’re feeling, you have made an impact on lives around the world. (Mine, at the absolute least.) Keep doing what your doing, and know that your fans will always be here to support you.
And for everyone else, for the everyday heroes out there, don’t be discouraged. Don’t be afraid to be honest, to share your imperfections with people. Chances are, someone out there can relate. And even if you’re still in the middle of a struggle, share so you can receive encouragement and love. There’s nothing arrogant about asking for help or prayer. Take your struggles to God, and watch as He turns them into something beautiful.
Oh, and maybe pull up a Jamie Grace song while you’re at it.