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Is there a correlation between are admiration in superheros and desperation for the supernatural?

It was ironic that I was the one securing the strings on the back of little Codys spider-man suit. He was convinced that he had the super human powers  to save the world, and yet he had the inability to suit up for the job. I remained to watch as he jetted off to save the household items from inanimate villains by jabbing his chubby fingers and the bad guys and capturing them in his invisible spidey web.

We assume that it is our job to teach those unable to teach themselves, but God is always turning the tables. As adults, we subconsciously shut our eyes and hearts to the world around us in order to limit our vision to our daily agenda. We confine our life to a to-do list and praying to God that there will be a window of time to take a shower before I crawl into bed and prepare begin the process all over again. We are constantly bombarded my subliminal messages, but rarely open our hearts to recieve what God wants us to learn. W make little time  to “abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight (phil.1:9).” On the other hand, children, attempt to grasp the whole world with blinking eyes. Bluntly honest, and yet to experience the routines of social reform, we have a lot to learn from our little ones. They are what we should see in ourselves: untainted or restricted by the world.

So as I watched the nature of this child who was enraptured by his own imaginary state, I  learned a little more about the nature of God himself.

I couldn’t help but think: Why is it that our culture is so engrossed with superheroes? Can you imagine how many hospital bills come from childrens failed attempts to fly? From big screen, small screen, comic strips, and magazines, every where I turn they’re there. It’s not surprising either! The reason that mall windows plaster pictures revealing Victoria’s latest lacey secret is the same reason that there is usually a superhero defending the box office profits; media has a way of appealing to our innate senses.  We are drawn to desire a power that we could never achieve on our own, because God made us that way.
Superheroes are the substitute for the supernatural we crave in Christ.

The American culture stretches beyond the boundaries of this universe in search of  a life to infinity and beyond. We try to deny the cards we are dealt by defeating the laws of Phycics, and is continually dazzled by magicians spoofs. We will manipulate if necessary  to be apart of the “greater good.” Of course, this pales  in comparison to the true supreme power of the God we crave.  And on the other end, horror movies rack up the big bucks by unleashing the fear of the evil in the world.

We are spiritual beings in need of spiritual fulfillment. Yet so many times we warp these wonderful desires from God and try to fulfill them in worldly ways.

The more I thought about it the more I realized that there are two kind of spiritual appeals from superheroes. One that imitates Christ, the other that imitates Christ infused man.

Superman for example: Sent by his Father from the Planet Krypton, Superman came to a small farm as a “baby” and was raised by illegitimate parents. He then grew up with the appearance of a normal man until his appointed time. Superman’s life calling led him to begin defeating the bad guys, saving those who could not save themselves and defending the good of mankind; all while having a great disguise. Sound familiar? Almost like the story of a God who sent his son to earth, who was born in a stable, raised by earthly parents, who began his ministry at 30 and then died for mankind as God but in the form of a man.  This is the Christ we serve; the one we know can save the day from impending doom. And the one who will.

Type two: Christ infused man. This would be like Spiderman. A less than Average Joe walking around, bitten by a spider, is transformed and able to do miraculous things with out having to achieve them by his own strength. But with great power comes great responsibility. Hero’s such as Spiderman the ability to overcome evil, but are flawed and struggle against an evil with in them. Just like our journey to become a Christian, God takes the initiative to draw us close to him as his chosen. We then are transformed to be like him, and given the power to do all things through His strength. Yet, though we are called to be like him, we still struggle with the sin nature with in us.

It’s a crazy parallel, but I don’t think it’s in any way an accident. This thought has affected they way I view the world, and my own desires. I haven’t begun shun all superhero substitutes, but I did focus a little more on the real thing. I’m taking a little more time to idolize my creator, become more like a child in my in awe and wonder of a God who can deliver me from all my emotional boo-boo’s. A God who arrives just in time to save the day. After all, if he didn’t come swooping down at the last second to save me from my perils, would I rely on him so strongly? I also started to look at myself a little differently. Do I allow the God who chose me, do miraculous things through me? It’s about time I realize the honor and responsibilities that come with being powered by Christ; while trying not to taint it with my own selfish desires.

So here my challenge: Be a conqueror through Christ. Be blown away by the awesome power of God, and expect to do amazing things through his strength. And the next time you see an “S” emblem, or your spidey senses begin to tingle, don’t settle for a substitute.



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