From the Pastor
I saw the new Star Wars movie over the holiday weekend. Even to this casual fan, it was lots of fun: Light sabers! Droids! Luke and Leia! The Millennium Falcon jumping to lightspeed! In classic Star Wars tradition, it’s an epic battle between darkness and light, with the small-but-fearless band of underdog rebels, always outnumbered but always committed to freedom, standing up to the mighty military force of the evil First Order.
What I love about this story (aside from the indomitable Carrie Fisher, of course. What a thrill to see Princess Leia all grown up and running the world. It’s hard to imagine the Star Wars universe without her) is that this conflict that happens a long time ago in a galaxy far, far, away is not all that different from the conflicts on this planet, in our own time. Why do some people fall prey to the darkness? Why do some hold on to the light? Hope is found – in their galaxy and in ours – in the belief that the light, as small and powerless as it might seem, will always be stronger than the dark.
There’s a scene near the end of the movie in which one of the rebels is on a suicide mission to take down one of the First Order’s deadliest weapons when he’s stopped by another resistance fighter, who knocks him off course, saving his life. When the dust clears, he’s angry at her, but she is unapologetic.
“That’s how we’re gonna win,” she explains. “Not by fighting what we hate, but by saving what we love.”
I’ve been thinking about that for the past few days, as we said goodbye to 2017 and rang in the new year. I’m not much for new year’s resolutions, but it does seem like a decent way to shape one’s life: not by fighting what we hate but by saving what we love.
A few of the things I love:
The stories of scripture.
Kindness and generosity.
The complicated diversity of life in the world.
What’s on your list? What will you do to save it?
Happy new year, friends. May your year be filled with love.