Greetings my friends!
I have a question for you, who is your Batman?
That may seem like an odd question, but I have heard it quite a bit lately. People use it to determine an approximation for a person's age. Depending on who you associate with playing the role of Batman, whether on TV or in the theaters, it can reveal an approximate time frame of when you grew up. For example, if you say Adam West is your Batman, people know you grew up around the 1960's; or you love re-runs. Personally, I loved the reruns and remember Adam West and Burt Ward as my Batman and Robin. And no I did not have to look those names up. For my children, they give a different name when asked that question and we have great conversations about what we each love in our Batman.
Regardless of who you think of as your Batman, one thing is always the same. You have an appreciation for comic book stories and/or the superhero genre. A love of that kind of storytelling has spanned generations and brought countless millions together, no matter the person under the mask. And today, those stories are front and center in the movie world and are bringing a whole new generation into this fold. Actors change, special effects change, but the underlying story of a person protecting others from evil and harm stays the same.
There is a challenge facing the church today. How do we take another story that has spanned generations - the love of Christ - and share it with new people? How do we bring another generation into the fold of faith so they can live in and through this amazing and perfect love? Christ's love and God's nature are unchanging. We may grow to deeper understandings of them both, but at their very nature they both remain the same. So how do we share that message and our God with folks that do not know or understand either? In a word, conversation.
People that have experience and a deep appreciation of a life lived in faith, can be tremendous ambassadors to answering these questions. They know what it is like to share their faith, to bring people into the fold, to find ways to bridge generations and preferences and share this powerful story. I love to watch people with this kind of experience interact with my children. I love to watch them share stories of their childhood, what it was like when they grew up, and the new things they have witnessed and experienced. I love it when a relationship forms and my boys discover a new "grandma" or "grandpa" or "aunt" or "uncle". My heart swells, their knowledge deepens, and our family tree is enlarged. And the best part is that we all can be a part of that experience - through sharing and listening.
I want to encourage each of you to be on the look out for that moment when you can share your faith with another. That moment when a person is ready to hear the story that has spanned generations, that is unchanging, and that brings a new life to those that hear it. Regardless of when we grew up, of when we came to the faith, of how far we are down our path of discipleship, or who the person was that first shared this amazing story with us - we can all witness to our faith.
All of us can play a role in sharing this story that is love incarnate, love at its best, love that is perfection in every sense.
Always remember, you are important, you are valued, and you are loved!