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The 700 Club

Be An Everyday Hero

RODNEY’S STORY
Rodney Bullard grew up in Decatur, Georgia as the son of a minister and educator. His parents strived to give him a quality education in a household that honored God. Yet, when Rodney was in first grade he struggled to read. The embarrassment of this crushed his confidence and he questioned his ability to learn. In the midst of this struggle, a teacher would rise to the challenge to become Rodney’s personal hero. She offered to teach him daily during the summer and worked with him relentlessly. By the end of the summer, Rodney was reading at a fourth and fifth-grade level. He explains, “If not for Mrs. Adams, I might have lost faith in myself and never realized the power of my ability to learn.” Rodney went on to achieve great things. Today, he is active in helping others as Vice President of Community Affairs at Chick-fil-A, Inc. and Executive Director of the Chick-fil-A Foundation where he leads the company’s corporate community and philanthropic strategy, which is focused on fostering youth and furthering education. Personally, he is championing everyday heroes through his social media campaign #HeroismOnDisplay, which highlights the sacrifice of those who use their God-given gifts to benefit others.

YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
Rodney believes that each person has a hero living inside of them.  Being a hero doesn’t always mean risking your life for someone else but it does mean giving of yourself to those around you. While studying the psychology of heroism, Rodney says that he came across psychologist Frank Farley who makes a distinction between the “big H” and “small h” of heroism. He explains, “‘Big H heroism’ involves risk which could include death, injury, imprisonment, or other serious or significant consequences. ‘Small h heroism’ on the other hand is everyday heroism, helping others, doing good deeds, and showing kindness, where serious harm or major consequences are not usually a result.” With that in mind, many of us believe that in order to be a hero, we have to perform life threatening acts of bravery in order to make a difference but that is not the case. Rodney refers to a quote from Arthur Ashe, “True heroism is remarkably sober, very undramatic. It is not the urge to surpass all others at whatever cost, but the urge to serve others at whatever cost.” If we can touch those around us consistently by using the gifts that God has given us to help others, we can make a difference. Rodney gives examples of real life heroes and how their acts of heroism started in the heart. For example, Gregory Ellison, a young boy, recognized the overwhelming problems in the world and saw the need around him. He asked his Aunt Dottie how he could make a difference. She responded, “I don’t know how you can change the world. All I know is how to change what is three feet around me.”  That answer pierced his heart and led him into his calling. He earned a PhD from Princeton, become a Professor at Emory University and founded Fearless Dialogues which creates a safe place for honest conversation and encourages others to the take the 3-Feet-Challenge--inspiring them to take action and make a difference. In just over 3 years, 10,000 people have accepted this challenge.

Rodney says that we can express our heroic heart through the nine C’s: Calling (answer your calling), Commitment (sacrificing to help others), Compassion (suffering together), Connection (cultivating relationships), Conviction (discerning the heart of God), Community (we grow stronger together), Courage (bravery causes action), Charity (loving one another regardless of our shortcomings), and Confidence (believing that we have something to contribute). In addition, treating people like significant men and women of God causes change. “The hero’s quest is never about success but it is all about significance. Significance leads, influences; it doesn’t seek celebrity. Significance makes things happen, shows empathy, uplifts people, impacts communities.”

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Guest Info

Credits

Author of: Heroes Wanted: Why the World Needs You to Live Your Heart Out, Harvest House, 2018

Air Force Veteran

Vice President of Community Affairs at Chick-fil-A and Executive Director of the Chick-fil-A Foundation

Past Congressional Legislative Liaison at the Pentagon

Former Assistant U.S. Attorney General

Former White House Fellow at NASA

Alumnus of: The Air Force Academy

Duke Law School; the University of Georgia; Harvard Business School

Married with son.

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