I will always remember my Atari video game—especially Mission Command, a game I played a lot from my living room. In Mission command, you aim missiles to stop the incoming lines of attack that seek to blow up your ammunition silos. Every level is harder, the lines come faster, there are more of them until you can no longer keep up and everything you tried to protect is destroyed.
How different that is from my daughter’s first Pokemon game where she traveled in a different world, picking up adorable creatures who she “raised up” so they might do battle with one another. She had to learn each pokemon’s gifts, what they could do and how they could grow to be a good trainer.
Which seems to be a good universe in which to grow up. To learn to seek each other’s gifts, to help another be stronger, and, in so doing, to grow into being a leader.
You can actually win at that game!
The Christian life is much more like that of Pokemon than Missile Command. It is a life led believing that God works in and through chesed–a Hebrew word for loving-kindness. Faith is most powerful, in my estimation, when applied, not “saving” the world from the missiles coming at us, but when we enact God’s chesed for one another. When we enact chesed, we build one another up, we see each other as worthy and call out each other’s gifts to create life, possibility, and a future we want for the next generation.
That sounds like a “win” to me!
Love, Pastor Heather