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Heroes: Bigger than Life

February 1, 2014

A lot of our time is spent looking for heroes. Sometimes we read about them in our favorite books — the Sherlock Holmes in the thriller detective stories, the Superman of the comics, the ever-favorite Clifford the Big Red Dog (for those younger and wiser audiences). Movies also try to give us heroes of many shapes and sizes. There’s everybody from Arnold Schwarzenegger’s one-man army, to the wonder nanny in Mary Poppins, to finally (I can’t resist) the small strong courage of Frodo Baggins in the epic Lord of the Rings. No matter where we look, we can find these larger-than-life characters who capture our interest and imagination.

The seventh-grade class at STA and I tried to make up our own hero one Thursday morning. They had a lot of great ideas and before long they came up with (dah dah dum ) “Telo-Man” — a phone-carrying hero who saves the helpless homeowner from prank phone calls. He has caller ID, great clothes, telekinesis, you name it. Truly a hero on the larger-than-life scale ready to save us from the troubles that surround us.

We didn’t stop at Telo-Man, though. There were two other heroes to consider — Moses and Jesus. Just as Telo-Man rescues the world from those devious prank-calling cranks, so too did Moses help rescue the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. And just as Telo-Man carries with him the power of telekinesis and caller ID, so does Jesus carry in himself the power of the Spirit poured out in His death and resurrection to bring us to union with God. Telo-Man may be pretty awesome, but Moses and Jesus give us the real deal.

And that may be the difference between the heroes we try to create for ourselves and the heroes that God sends us. A lot of our heroes try to take us away from the problems and troubles and keep us wrapped in a false security. Superman saves the day so that we won’t have to. But people like Moses and Jesus help us move right into the problems of who we are, leaving our false secure Egypts and moving into the unknown newness of the Spirit.

Superman and the rest may be larger-than-life — but only Jesus promises to be Life Itself!

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From → Musings

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