Have you noticed the recent popularity of super hero movies lately? I’m a bit of a comic book and sci-fi nerd and for the most, part I really like most of those movies. It would be cool to have special abilities and be a super hero. Super hero stories are often stories of common men who are given great strength and power to help others. But have you ever considered yourself a hero or the potential to be a hero?
A hero can be anyone. A hero is someone who holds high a great cause and puts others before themselves and always tries to do right. In Hebrews 11 we are given the example of heroes of the faith who used their abilities to be examples for the faith. Though these are legendary examples of the faith we are called to follow in their footsteps and continue the race of faith while always focusing on Christ.
One of my favorite lines from the super hero movies is Uncle Ben’s line to Peter Parker in Spiderman: “With great power, comes great responsibility.” The knowledge of God’s word and faith in Him are sources of great power. Through the tools of God’s Word, His love, faith in Him, spiritual gifts, and most importantly the gift of God’s Holy Spirit, we are given great power and great responsibility. How will we respond?
We have the responsibility to lead by example and help others. We have a responsibility to God’s truth that He has shown us and to the Spirit He has given us. And with the special spiritual gifts He has given us we have the responsibility to help others and lift up the church. A commentary in my Bible on 2 Timothy 1:7 says, “the Holy Spirit is the One who gives us spiritual gifts and empowers us to use them. God’s Spirit does not impart fear or cowardice, but power, love, and a sound mind, or self-control. …The love the Spirit gives to us should be directed toward other individuals. Furthermore, as we use our spiritual gifts to build up the church, we should exercise self-control, using our abilities at the appropriate time.”
In the movies, when the heroes are at their weakest and are almost defeated by the bad guy, they summon enough power and strength to carry on and inspire those who see them. With the power we are given we can inspire others as we fight the enemy and become better men or women. Faith in God gives us that power to carry on. If you are in a battle with sin or with stress and the cares of the world, don’t give up!
Someone is watching and will gain strength by your example. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily hinders our progress. And let us run with endurance the race that God has set before us. We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from start to finish. He was willing to die a shameful death on the cross because of the joy he knew would be his afterward. Now he is seated in the place of highest honor beside God’s throne in heaven. Think about all he endured when sinful people did such terrible things to Him, so that you don’t become weary and give up. After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin.” Hebrews 12:1-6 “So take a new grip with your tired hands and stand firm on your shaky legs. Mark out a straight path for your feet. Then those who follow you, though they are weak and lame, will not stumble but will become strong.” Hebrews 12:12-13.
Let us be heroes and use the power that God gives us responsibly. The power of faith in God, spiritual gifts and talents, and courage knowing God is with us. Use this power for good and to lift up others and lift up the church. “With great power, comes great responsibility.”
– James Osborne, Contributing Writer