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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Training or Gifting? has this great cartoon up right now about the difference between Japanese heroes and American heroes.

Ryu (yes, that Ryu; from Street Fighter) decides to prepare to protect Earth from alien attack. He makes a point about how he'll train really hard, even carrying a bolder to do so. As he is fighting aliens, he feels overwhelmed. Way to many for him to fight alone. In come 3 heroes, from our 2 biggest hero houses, DC and Marvel, to help him. As he compliments them on their skills, they all admit that they haven't really trained that much. Iron Man just has cool gadgets and money, Spidey got bitten by a spider, and Superman was born with it.

This is a huge over-generalization, right? Look at the X-Men. They have a huge room devoted to training and even a whole school. Wildcat has a purpose in DC comics of training younger heroes and vigilantes. Think about our other heroes, that we label under other things. Catniss Everdeen trains on various techniques before going into the Hunger Games.Luke Skywalker has to train with Yoda and Obi-wan.

On the Japanese side it doesn't seem so off, though. Almost all Asian heroes that I know of have a lot of training and a strong emphases on preparation. I am sure there are exceptions, though. Feel free to let me know of any.

This week we celebrated Veterans Day. A day when we remember men who trained hard and worked hard to keep our nation free. Now, in some cases, such as Word Wars, the training was quickened a little bit. And in other cases, such as the Vietnam War, soldiers arrive to a theater of operations to find out they need to learn a whole new set of lessons from soldiers who have been there for a while.

As Christians, we are told to train. Paul tells us in 1 Timothy 4:8 that physical training is of some value, but the training in Godliness holds much more relevant value. This is one of the reasons we have the Bible. To train in righteousness. In 1 Corinthians he tells us about the proper uses of spiritual gifts. These gifts are given to all followers of Christ freely, but we don't always look for them.

You see, real heroes have a mixture. God freely gives all his followers gifts to use in fighting spiritual battles and in serving. Yet we still need training. We need to learn how to use those gifts, when to use the gifts, and we need to learn wisdom. But it isn't only training.

In the cartoon mentioned above, Spiderman, Superman and Iron Man somehow all come at once to aid Ryu. What did Jesus do when He sent the disciples out to teach? He sent them out 2 by 2. They went out as teams. Paul's treatment on spiritual gifts in his letter to the Corinthians comes in a context of unity. He discusses order in worship during this time as well as the beauty of the diversity of the Body of Christ.

In order to be real super heroes, we need all of these. We need training. We need natural talents and spiritual gifts from the Holy Spirit. We need each other. That is the recipe for true heroism.

**Quick Note: This Saturday, Nov. 15, is a gathering at Cornerstone Univ. 6:00pm. Come join us for a chapel service and some gaming after that.**

1 comment:

  1. Superman was "trained." He wouldn't be who he is without the upbringing of the Kents.