Star Wars is as Americana as apple pie. Heroes, super heroes, good vs. evil, and fascinating characters inhabiting the screen. To me, Star Wars has a bit of a theological edge to it, with the Force taking on the role of a Godlike presence. I intend to see the movie this week, but that won’t stop me from writing about it, having seen all the other ones. So, if I am wrong about anything, feel free to correct me.
There is something about this continuing franchise/story that forces one to think theologically. There is Luke Skywalker, wearing a monk-like Jedi robe, attempting to train a new Jedi, with the question, “Will his gifts contribute to do more good than evil in this world?”
Isn’t this a question we all face on one level or another? In a certain sense it is because we are all given the gift of freedom and called to make a difference in this world. I believe there is no question that there is a great deal of darkness, or shall we say evil, in this world that certainly strikes at the heart of all of us when we consider ISIS, terror, and the sheer brutality of this world, whether you are looking at people in Flint, Michigan, trying to have a glass of water or at demonstrations where people shout, “Black lives matter”, or the massive starvation that exists in so many places in this world.
The observation a particular writer made about the Star Wars series is that – “evil seeks reassurance and good is less confident in itself.” I find this to be extremely true. There is an old saying that “for evil to thrive, good people need to do nothing.” It is also my experience that standing up, leading and confidently doing good things is even harder to accomplish. The church gathers each week to confess that we want this darkness overcome and that we need encouragement to do good.
You may say, “how can God exist with so much evil in the world?” On the other hand, it is absolutely amazing how much good is being done every day in families, schools, hospitals, churches, and on a personal level.
Maybe our prayer this week should be “May the Force awaken us to the work that stands before us as the people of God.”