Archive for the Superheroes Category

Put A Bandaid On It…

Posted in Christian, Christmas, Christmas Party, Church, Comics, Community, Country, Culture, DC, Devotion, Digital, Dining, Election, Electronics, End Times, Entertainment, Evangelism, Faith, Family, Fantasy, Food, Fun, Geek, Global, God, Government, Health, HIstory, Holiday, Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, Leadership, Life, Love, Marriage, Marvel, Medical, Military, Ministry, Money, Movies, Music, Nerd, New Testament, Old Testament, Pastors, Pittsburgh, Political, Prayer, Real Talk, Resurrection, Sacrifice, Sci Fi, Social Media, Spiritual, sports, Superheroes, Supernatural, Taboo Topics, The Church, The Law, Travel, TV, Tworship, Vampires, Werewolf, worship with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 24, 2014 by BigPhatPastor

So a few months ago I pulled a tendon in my left arm.  It took forever to heal because I kept going right back out and doing the thing that caused the damage in the first place, #dagorhir (you’re going to have to Google it).  After weeks of it not healing I finally took a few weeks off from sparring and gym workouts to let it heal.  Then I gradually re-engaged in both #dagorhir  and gym workouts.  It took time but it healed. 

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So what do you think I did when I pulled a tendon in my right arm a few weeks later (this was after a pulled abdominal muscle and a few thumb smashes…#dagorhir)? I went right back at it without allowing time for healing.  Of course once I finally took a few weeks off it began to heal; I am still in that healing process.

I look at our nation now and I see a nation that needs to heal, from wounds of lost loved ones, from wounds of lost trust and confidence, and from wounds caused by hatred and bigotry. This nation, we make up this nation, need time to heal.

Over the Christmas weekend take some time to heal.  Step away from the keyboard.  Don’t respond to any flagrant posts or tweets. Ignore the rants and tirades and spend the weekend with family and loved ones.  We all need time to heal.  #merrychristmas.

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What Christ Followers Can Learn From Comics

Posted in Christian, Comics, Culture, DC, Devotion, Digital, Entertainment, Fantasy, Geek, Jesus Christ, Leadership, Life, Marvel, Movies, Nerd, Real Talk, Sci Fi, Superheroes, The Church, TV, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 21, 2014 by BigPhatPastor

My top 3 movies of all time are 7 Brides for 7 Brothers, The Matrix, with Ultra Violet, Aeon Flux, and the Bollywood hit movie Bride and Prejudice all in a tie for third place (don’t judge me if you haven’t seen them).  But the super hero movies fromBlack Logo4V Marvel Comics are definitely edging their way into my top 10.  The Avengers movie from 2012, which grossed close to 2
billion dollars worldwide, was probably my favorite and sits nicely as my fourth favorite.  I went to see it with my son and some friends who were also comic book fans.  My son and I were the only ones who were actually brought to tears (yes, real tears).  Mainly because we were watching comic book heroes we were fond of brought to life on the big screen…together.

Although many of the characters appeared in movies of their own prior to the Avengers movie, seeing them overcome their differences and issues to come together for a greater cause to fight a common enemy made the movie hit home.  Marvel did the same thing with the recent hit Guardians of the Galaxy.  As a comic book fan I had a passing idea of the comic book group on which the movie was based.  However, many people who did not know the group still loved the movie.  Why?  Well (no spoilers for those who have not yet seen it), in addition to the great comedic factor, and the extremely awesome soundtrack (which any fan or child of the 1980’s will love), the movie again focused on bringing people together.  Individuals who each had different ideas of how to achieve a common goal put their differences aside to overcome a common enemy.  This hasn’t escaped the notice of DC Comics who are planning on bringing several superheroes together in the upcoming Batman v Superman movie and the Justice League movie.  Somehow Hollywood has taken notice that unity is the key to success.

Hero2So for those who have not quite caught on to where this is going I will ask the obvious question…why hasn’t the Church taken notice?  Today, depending upon your definition of the word denomination, there are close to 400,000 different denominations that exist on the planet.  These span the three major world views: Theism which holds that there is a God over all who made all; Pantheism which holds that God is all and everyone and everything is a part of that all; and Atheism which holds that there is no God at all.  Within the Christian denominations most hold to a common belief system:  there is one God who manifests Himself as God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit;   that God the Father loved humanity so much that He sent God the Son to die for the sins of humanity in the place of humanity and then was resurrected; that evidence for this exists via God the Son sending God the Holy Spirit residing within all those who believe as the promised seal of God the Father.  Many denominations have different structures and ways of worshipping God.  But of the ones who hold the above in common, and who believe that the most important role of the Church, the body of Christ, is to reveal this truth to the world, the question still remains, why are they not coming together?

Isn’t there more strength in numbers? Yes.  Wouldn’t the Church be more effective at reaching people with this truth if they combined resources? Possibly.  Has coming together to achieve a common goal proven effective for more than just comic book heroes?  Most definitely!  No matter where one stands on same sex marriage it cannot be denied that the overwhelming accomplishment of 19 states approving same sex marriage has come about because those who are proponents of it have banded together, inside and outside of the church, putting their differences aside to achieve a common goal.  The same is true of the legalization of marijuana.  Proponents of the legal use of marijuana have banded together for a common goal and currently over 20 states have laws allowing either medical use of marijuana or use for recreational purposes.  I am not trying to be negative but if “potheads” can come together, surely the Spirit filled people of God can as well.

If the Church believes the message and truth of the gospel is a more important and more life changing message than that of same sex legislation or marijuana legalization then why aren’t they banding together?  Why aren’t larger congregations and smaller congregation sharing resources?  Why are disagreements over hymns and traditional music still being debated?  Why are there still predominantly white or black congregations in communities with diversity when we are all one in Christ? Why aren’t fundamentalists and charismatics acknowledging God’s Spirit exists in all true believers and coming together to share that good news?

Just recently, over 25,000 people came together for the three day Franklin Graham Three Rivers of Hope Festival in the city of Pittsburgh. 3 Rivers2  Hundreds of churches came together for a common goal and thousands upon thousands of people put their faith and trust in Jesus Christ.  How would our congregations benefit if instead of bringing congregations together every few decades when a member of the Graham family came to town, we brought them together every few months?  What would it say to our communities if they consistently and regularly saw various denominations coming together to worship Jesus Christ?  How much more would the message of true transformation be heard by those in our circles of influence if the focus of all of our congregations was on inviting people into our lives and into God’s kingdom instead of just into our buildings on Sunday mornings?

As Stan Lee, comic book icon, is quoted as saying, “With great power must also come…greater responsibility,”  Since the Church, the body of Christ is filled with the greatest power known to exist on the planet, the Spirit of the Living God, we BigPhatChecklisthave a greater responsibility to come together to see God’s purposes fulfilled through His Church.   Plan a meeting with your pastor, ministry team, and then with other local pastors and/or their ministry teams within your community to see how you can start coming together to plan a community worship celebration, a praise in the park event, a community Thanksgiving celebration or to meet a community need. #wearethechurch

What If…The Avengers Got Saved

Posted in Christian, Culture, Digital, Entertainment, Fun, God, Sci Fi, Superheroes, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on May 23, 2012 by BigPhatPastor

With a nod to the Marvel “What If” classic comic book, to the recent Avengers movie (a must see), Nick fury, and of course to God…I was thinking the other day, what if the Avengers got saved!

Captain America – I was right, there is only one God and He doesn’t dress like that!

Hulk – One true God not so puny!

Thor – Okay, so now we are all adopted.

Iron Man – Consider the world now saved and avenged!

Black Widow – Now the red is totally off my ledger.

Hawk Eye – No missing the mark now.

The Gospel According to Green Lantern

Posted in Christian, Digital, Fun, God, Holy Spirit, Jesus Christ, Sci Fi, Superheroes, The Church, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on June 16, 2011 by BigPhatPastor

With all the tragedy and hardship going on around our nation right now I thought it would be ok to bring a little light (pun intended) into everyone’s day.  As a huge huge comic book fan I am excited at the onslaught of DC and Marvel movies in and coming to theaters this year.  So I took a moment to share my joy with our worshipping community this past week with a message relating to Green Lantern.  My goal was to share how we can see God in everything…even comic books that have nothing to do with religion or faith.

The Guardians of Oa (planet Oa) are the beings who are the self-proclaimed protectors of the universe (and by this I mean the DC Comic universe…of course).  They have been around since the beginning of the universe.  The Guardians of Oa created the power battery and filled it with a great power.  The power when focused through a power ring (not to be confused with a Power Ranger…sorry, I couldn’t help myself) allows the ring bearer to shape that power into anything the ring bearer can imagine.  It is limited only by the ring bearers will.  The ring bearer has to charge the ring in a power battery, which is connected to the main battery on Oa, which would provide power to the ring for a 24 hour time period before having to be re-charged.  The Guardians took that power and provided it to select individuals throughout the universe.  Each individual who wore the ring then became a protector of their area of the universe and was known as a Green Lantern.  Each Green Lantern was considered one of the most powerful heroes in the universe because they were in possession of one of the most powerful forces in the universe.  When the Green Lanterns came together they made up the Green Lantern Corps, one of the most incredible, powerful, unstoppable groups in existence in the DC Comic universe.

As a pastor and a follower of Jesus Christ, I can’t help but see all the theological analogies.  God is the creator of this universe and He existed long before its creation.  He took the greatest power in existence, His very Spirit, the same Spirit that raised Jesus Christ from the dead and gave it to all those who would believe in and trust in Him.  Each person who does that then becomes a living walking manifestation of the very presence of God and has in them the single most powerful force in existence.  When those people come together they are known as the Church and when they step forward to do God’s will through the direction and anointing of God’s Holy Spirit they become the most incredible, powerful, unstoppable group in existence in this universe.

God’s “Like” Button

Posted in Christian, Fun, Global, God, Life, Sci Fi, Social Media, Superheroes, Vampires with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 24, 2010 by BigPhatPastor

I’m sure many of you have read the emails that used to float around saying that if God had a refrigerator your picture would be on it or if He had a wallet your picture would be in it.  While that does capture an aspect of God’s love for us, it doesn’t speak much about how God views our culture.  So…I was kind of wondering what it would look like if God had a “Like” button (of course all of the below are “in my humble opinion”).  I can already smell the controversial responses but…

Like – I honestly believe that God would “Like” the way social media has been used to connect people, help publicize the needs of people around the world, and allow global impact on responding to natural disasters and even just encouraging and uplifting one another.  There’s still nothing wrong with a good old fashioned face to face talk or cup of coffee, but definitely using social media to help others would be a huge like (I believe).

Like – I’m not saying that everyone or everything in Hollywood pleases God.  But I think the level of authenticity that is starting to appear in some movies, some actors and actresses, and even in some TV shows would please God.  Definitely still a long way to go but, yea, there’s a start.

Dislike – Not that it matters in the spiritual realm but a part of me wonders if God would dislike the lack of manliness in vampires and superheroes today.  Of course that one is up for debate…go!

Like – Granted our culture, our nation, and our planet have fallen on hard times.  But this has not stopped the desire of individuals, organizations, congregations, and even whole populations of townships, cities, and nations to reach out and help those in less fortunate situations.  One of the most powerful statements made by Jesus Christ is recorded in Mark 14:7 when He tells His followers that they can help the poor anytime they chose.

Dislike – Although there is a huge desire to help others around the globe, we as a culture seem to have a hard time treating those in our local circle of influence with genuine human good nature and respect.  Unfortunately, what many people experience in their work place, schools, communities, in their homes, and even in congregational places of worship are gossip, hatred, racial disharmony, natural distrust, and just a general lack of natural respect for each other.  From God’s viewpoint, we could reach out with more than our finances.  We could reach out with some old fashioned love of thy neighbor (Mark 12:33).

Like – I think God would be genuinely pleased with our cultures overall acceptance of the differences that we all share.  I’m not referring to differences that are not pleasing to God, but our acceptance of different races, cultures, creeds, religious, and political views.  God views every one of us as worthy of being in relationship with Him despite our differences, backgrounds, or experiences.  (2 Peter 3:9, John 3:16)

Dislike – Yet we still do not tolerate the God who created all the peoples of differing races, cultures, creeds, religious, and political views.  Not only do we not tolerate Him, but those who claim to follow Him tolerate and accept things opposed to Him rather than Him.  Unfortunately, even the churches that bear His name and are supposed to follow His teachings are teaching things that are in direct opposition to Him merely because they refuse to believe Him although they claim to believe IN Him.  Yea, I think this one needs a lot of work and would definitely be high on the dislike scale.

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