I’m reaching that age where I start to think about my life in terms of mentoring and being a role model, wondering what I am actually passing on to the next generation; I’m also a language teacher who spends her life trying to drill tenses into pupils who barely seem to understand these in English, let alone French. The conditional tense talks about ‘would’ and ‘should’ and ‘could’… hypothetical scenarios which may or may not actually happen. Certain conditions have to be fulfilled if they are to move from the hypothetical to the actual, some of which are easier to predict than others (‘if you did your homework and handed it in on time, I would not be cross!’)

So when I hear a song that uses the conditional tense, my ears prick up and the cynic in me supplies all the ‘if’ clauses which may not lead to these conditions being fulfilled! But then I stop. For this song is actually not just talking about hypothetical scenarios. It’s talking about what Jesus said we actually are, now, not just what we will become in the future or what might happen one day. We are the light of the world (Matt 5:14). We are the salt of the earth.(Matt 5:13) God’s love does dwell within us. (Rom 5:5) So maybe it’s true that we can also ‘rise above the normal’, even when we’re weak and weary, and be a hero, a role model, a light shining God’s love to a world that is desperate for reality and truth.

“Who ever told you you can’t win?
Who ever said that if you fail don’t try again?
It’s in the ordinary,
Deep in the weak and weary:
The power to overcome the fear you’re holding in

You could be a hero.
You could be the change in this world.
Rise above the normal,
Don’t have to be afraid any more.
We are the light; we are the hope;
We are the love inside worth fighting for
You could be, you could be, you could be a hero.

You don’t have to look that hard to see.
You don’t have to reach that far to find someone in need.
There is a desperation deep in this generation,
Looking for something new, a love they can believe.

Love will even cross the ocean wide,
Love will lose it all to save a life
Because of the love God gave you’ll find
That you could be a hero.” (Kutless, ‘Hero’)

Kutless, ‘Hero’