I realize I already posted once about a superhero movie. I live in a house with a lot of guys, so I see a lot of superhero movies. And I like them, but not for the same reason as the guys. I always like the back story, the romantic elements, the human interest part. My guys tend to focus on the fight scenes and whether the movies follow the story lines of the comic books. I don’t get to say much in our movie discussions, but I still like seeing the movies.
Recently I saw Green Lantern with my guys. I enjoyed it, although like most superhero movies, it wasn’t meant to be a life-altering experience. Usually they have some great moral, and this was no different. It was about fear and courage. In fact, the villain induced fear and then sucked it–and the life–out of his victims. Great special effects; he was a truly creepy villain.
But, one little scene stuck with me, one little take home lesson. I don’t know who wrote the movie, but he quietly made a really profound statement about battling fear, and if you don’t mind a minor spoiler for the movie, I’d like to share my thoughts on it, especially since I know the battle with fear very well, and I don’t always fight it wisely or victoriously.
At one point our hero faces the villain, and the villain does his thing, attempting to induce fear and then destroy said hero. And for a moment it seems to work. Special effects are in force; suspenseful music blares; the hero’s shiny life force is draining away; and it seems all will be lost. This villain is capable of sucking the life out of entire planets, so for a moment it’s unclear how the lone hero–and a newbie hero at that–is going to survive, although of course we all know he’ll survive.
The answer surprised me. If you don’t live in a house of geeks and don’t know your Green Lantern, let me first tell you he wears a ring that uses green energy to create things. To initialize his ring, if you will, he says an oath. It points to his goal–defeating evil–and points to his power–the light of his ring. He can do what he does not because of who he is but because of where his power comes from, the light from his ring. And when he’s using it, evil better look out.
In the movie, when all seems lost, the hero begins to recite his oath. In brightest day, in blackest night, No evil shall escape my sight.
Let those who worship evil’s might, Beware my power… Green Lantern’s light! Speaking the words that started him down the path of heroism, reminding himself of the source of his power, he drowns out the fear and manages to escape the villain. The words he’d not really taken seriously until now suddenly save his life and give him another chance to save the world. And once they do, he takes them–and his new role as superhero–more seriously than ever before.
Ah, you see where I’m going. It’s so simple, but I don’t always use it myself. I give in to fear all the time. But I have a very large book of truthful words about God’s power to drown out the fear-inducing mutterings of my enemy. I have the Word directly from God–including very specific promises that I’m never alone, never without my power source, always a threat to evil–and I also have valuable summaries that can help me find my way–creeds, confessions, writings of godly men. I’m not left alone to face this enemy. I have words that will call forth the power of God, the power of the Spirit, to help me fight even the most hopeless-seeming battles.
If even Hollywood understands how much strength is in one’s oaths and creeds, we should understand more fully, for the words given to us are the most powerful ever written. I mustn’t forget to read them. Remember them. Count on them. Use them. Let them lead me into battle. They’re living and active, more powerful than a double-edged sword. And when the battle is at its toughest, speak them aloud. Scream them if necessary. Then wait in awe as God unleashes his power and comes to the rescue. God’s light may not pierce the darkness with a green light, but it will always pierce it, and it will always come to rescue His beloved, show them the way, and win battles. And it’s better than any superhero movie.