Here is Gandalf, defending the hobbit Bilbo Baggins to the sceptical dwarves on the eve of their great adventure:
“I have chosen Mr Baggins and that ought to be enough for all of you. If I say he is a Burglar, a Burglar he is, or will be when the time comes. There is a lot more in him than you guess, and a deal more than he has any idea of himself. You may (possibly) all live to thank me yet.”
Are you like the dwarves, quick to criticise and pass judgement based on outward appearances?
Are you like the Bilbo, your heroic deeds buried under layers of suburban domestication, so deep down that even you don’t quite believe them to be possible?
Are you like Gandalf, who chooses to see the best in others, encouraging them to live out their calling, even if it means putting the outcome at risk?
Who will you be in 2013?