In preparation, my family and I watched Episodes I—VI the week before we went to see the new Star Wars movie, “The Force Awakens.” We entered the theater with our overpriced popcorn in hand, ready to take in the next part of the story. The prep time was worth it—the popcorn. . . not so much.
Episode VII, “The Force Awakens,” was exciting, cool and fun, and left me with a glimmer of the mystery, wonder and awe that I felt when I watched the first Star Wars movie as an eleven year old in 1977.
The movie had it all—action, suspense, amazing effects, intriguing characters, an engaging story line and humor. I loved it when “Finn,” a new character in the saga, naively responds to an overwhelming dilemma with, “We’ll figure it out, we’ll use the Force!” and the exasperated Han Solo responds, “That’s not how the Force works!”
The “Force” is the thread (the cord) that runs through all of the Star Wars canon. It is a “character” that is difficult to understand and hard to deny. It is powerful, life-giving, and vulnerable. It has ethereal attributes that are both spirit-like and god-like. According to the story, the Force is everywhere, but easily missed—unseen and unrealized by most. The “Force” in the Star Wars saga is the “god-like,” character at the center of the story.
This makes me think of another story—the Story that I am a part of. It is the story where the God and Creator of the Universe loves me (and you) and is with us, for us and in us. The unseen, the unrealized and the ethereal are dispelled in the One that is all-loving and ever-pursuing, Jesus Christ—my Savior and Lord.
As we embark on this New Year are you feeling alone? Do you feel like God is in “a galaxy far, far away”? I am convinced that we have more at our disposal than Finn’s blind optimism. We have a reliable thread (a cord) to hang on to and to trust in, and on the other end is the living, loving God.
Take a look at what C.S. Lewis says about this:
“It is always shocking to meet life where we thought we were alone. ‘Look out!’ we cry, ‘it’s alive’. And therefore this is the very point at which so many draw back—I would have done so myself if I could—and proceed no further with Christianity. An ‘impersonal God’—well and good. A subjective God of beauty, truth and goodness, inside our own heads—better still. A formless life-force surging through us, a vast power which we can tap—best of all. But God Himself, alive, pulling at the other end of the cord, perhaps approaching at an infinite speed, the hunter, king, husband—that is quite another matter. There comes a moment when the children who have been playing at burglars hush suddenly: was that a real footstep in the hall? There comes a moment when people who have been dabbling in religion (‘Man’s search for God!’) suddenly draw back. Supposing we really found Him? We never meant it to come to that! Worse still, supposing He had found us?”
—C.S. Lewis, Miracles
Happy New Year!