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It’s Inspirational Role Models Month

It’s Inspirational Role Models Month

About 60 years ago the term role model entered our national vocabulary, and ten years ago Inspirational Role Models Month was founded to celebrate those whose example is worthy of recognition, maybe even imitation.

Both children and parents need role models. So how do we go about finding those and what can we learn from them?

Since I’ve never been invited to an Inspirational Role Models Month party, and I’ve never seen an IRM greeting card, I’m going to go out on a limb and celebrate my own way by recognizing role models from the Old Testament.

Like any human, each of these failed in some areas of life. Many things remain unknown about them, and some of what we know is cautionary at best or serves as a negative example. But as I consider each of these, I am inspired by their example.

Jael is mentioned in Judges 4 and 5, and I remember her for the simple example of using what was in her hand. She held a tent peg. What is in your hand?

Joseph’s story is well known, and perhaps you have a favorite part. Mine is his statement in Genesis 50:20, “Ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good.” What a good perspective.

Queen Esther’s circumstances were not likely what she would have chosen for herself, and yet she interceded for her people “for such a time as this” (Esther 4:14).

Job did not understand the suffering upon suffering that he endured, and yet he could say with assurance, “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him” (Job 13:15). I don’t ask for his suffering, but should it come, I ask for his hope.

Ruth lost much—her homeland, her husband, her hopes—but I remember her faithfulness and pure love far more than her loss.

David was a protective shepherd, a courageous giant slayer, a faithful friend. And yet because of his brokenness over his sin, I remember him as the model of a penitent man. “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)

Sarah stepped ahead of God and crafted her own ill-fated solutions to life’s problems, just as I sometimes do, but she took her marriage vows seriously and followed her husband as he followed God into the unknown. Brides young and old can learn from her example.

These are just a few of my Old Testament role models, and with the Lord’s help, I want to imitate them. That’s important for us to realize as parents, because our children imitate us, and we can give them no greater example than watching us imitate God and role models from the Bible.

How about you? Who are your Bible role models, and why do they inspire you? In honor of Inspirational Role Model month, will you take a moment to share them with us?

By: Nancy Lohr

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  1. Jeremiah is one of my new OT role models. He was told at the beginning of his ministry that nobody would listen to him and that he would be mocked and threatened. Yet he persisted for over fifty years, trusted God, and still said, “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

  2. Fifty years! I don’t think of that part of Jeremiah’s story. That is true persistence.

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