Your New Friend

September 12, 2008
There are many ways to define the word hero. If you looked up the definition in my dictionary, it would refer you to Austin. He is a great friend and an incredible brother in Christ. I know Austin from Northern Pines Christian family camp in Green Lake, Wisconsin. He is incredibly funny and is one of the most fun people to be around. Austin is heroic to me because he is funny, an incredible friend, musical, wise, and cunning like Odysseus.
He grew up in Minnesota, and he has never left. Born on July 28, 1986, he spent the first part of his life not really knowing what he wanted to do. Eight years ago, he found out he wanted to play the guitar. He is an amazing musician, and he has already published a CD. In 6th grade he started going to Northern Pines. It was there that he changed and dedicated his life to Christ. He, like all other people, had struggles in life. It was at the camp Northern Pines that I met Austin, and I have loosely known him for three years. However, this last year I connected with him, and he shared his life story with me. We are still really good friends, and I look forward to seeing him next year.

Austin is very funny, which does not seem much like a heroic trait, but to me it is. My favorite form of entertainment is comedy. So when is meet someone that is funny, it is very easy for me to connect with them. One time Austin was talking to some people in a dinning room and picked up a chair. He started lifting it up and down and said, “Don’t mind me, I’m just working out.” That is just an example of how random and fun he is to be around.

You can get more of a great friend out of Austin, than you can most people. The great thing about him is he is automatically like a best friend when you meet him. Austin was the director of the junior high program I was in last year, and we had a talent show. Most of the people were scared to go up on stage, but Austin encouraged them. He just said, “Hey, sometimes you have to turn and face the music.” That happens to be a quote from one of his great songs.

Being a musician sounds like a fantastic life. Riding around the country, doing what you love to do for your job. This is not true at all. Austin says that it takes a lot of practice to even be considered a decent guitar player. Second, he has to compose his own music and write his lyrics. This takes weeks and months of pouring his heart into a song. Also, he has to have another job because he is not paid enough yet. He has to handle all of this, and he still has time to just have fun. He started playing guitar eight years ago, has a CD out, and he is an amazing singer and musician. “Although, I will admit it is pretty fun working doing something you love,” says Austin.

They say that the gift of wisdom is rare and beautiful; this is true with Austin as well. He is wise in so many ways and is only 22. It seems that he has been through everything and knows exactly how to handle the situation. This aspect of him is probably the most helpful thing to me; about him. He led me through many of my struggles in life, and I have ended up in a great situation.

Obviously, Austin and Odysseus are both very unique. However, they do have one strong quality that they both share. The mutual aspect of the two of them is their wit. They are both cunning in so many ways. In the Odyssey, Odysseus used this gift to beat all of the monsters and other trials on his journey home. Austin does not fight monsters, but he uses this gift as well. He has used it to persuade people to let him do things he isn’t qualified for. Last year, when he was a counselor, he let kids stay up all night, and he got in a heap of trouble. Still, he persuaded the manager of the camp to let him be the leader of the junior high program. This compares to going from a Police Lieutenant to the Chief of Police after messing up, because it is such a big jump in leadership and responsibility. That takes skill.

Austin deserves to be called my hero. He is every part of a role model for a kid like me. He can help me with problems, show me that I can be what ever I want to be, and let me believe that my dreams can be real. Austin is funny, an incredible friend, wise, a musician, and very cunning. It makes me smile just thinking about going back to camp. Hopefully, when he is a famous musician, he will be an inspiration to people everywhere.

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