Tag Archives: star wars

You will be. You will be

Inclusivity Devotional for October 17, 2021

This devotion was published first in the IGRC for Unity weekly email. IGRC for Unity is a group of Illinois United Methodists who have rejected the Traditional Plan for the United Methodist Church and are working to create a United Methodist Church that is truly open to all. These devotionals will be taken from a text from the Revised Common Lectionary, and will often have a theme of inclusion and welcome.

Revised Common Lectionary Reading: Mark 10:35-45

This passage always reminds me of the movie Empire Strikes Back. In a scene inside Yoda’s hut, he and Luke Skywalker are debating if he should train young Luke as a Jedi. Yoda sees Luke’s impetuousness and immaturity. He sees the anger in young Luke and decides not to train him as a Jedi. Luke is hot-headed and impatient. He wants to be a Jedi. He wants to fight like his father. He wants to be a hero and overthrow the Empire. Yoda wonders, “Will he finish what he starts?” Pleading with Yoda he says, “I won’t fail you. I’m not afraid.” Yoda looks at him ominously and says, “You will be,” and repeats, “You will be.”

John and James come to Jesus and ask, “Allow one of us to sit on your right and the other on your left when you enter your glory.” He asks them “Will you drink the cup I drink?” They respond, “We can.” Ominously, Jesus answers, “You will drink the cup.”

They ask to sit at Jesus’ right and left. These are places of honor. They are looking ahead to the victory. They are looking ahead to the time when Jesus will reign. They see themselves as riding shotgun and basking in Jesus’ glory. What they don’t understand is that at the height of Jesus’ glory, the ones at his right and his left will be hanging on crosses just like Jesus.

The Revised Common Lectionary suggests for us to start this reading at verse 35, but to get the full context we would be well-served to start where we left off last week – at verse 32. By going back to verse 32 we see that Jesus and a crowd were “going up to Jerusalem.” The response is a mix of awe and fear, so Jesus takes the Twelve aside and reminds them (for the third time in two chapters) that in Jerusalem he will die an ignominious death before being raised up.

When the other ten hear what James and John asked, they get angry. The funny thing is, I don’t they are angry that they asked the question. I think they are angry that James and John asked it first. None of them truly understand at this point what ambition looks like in the Kingdom. Christian ambition is a tricky thing. Aren’t we all supposed to be striving for greatness?

Jesus redefines greatness. The twelve are still operating in the system that judges greatness by how many people serve you. For Jesus, greatness is defined by who many people you serve. It is not measured by rank or status. Greatness is not marked on attendance pads, church budgets, charge conference forms, or plum appointments. Greatness is earned with kindness, generosity, and service. It is seldom rewarded in the ways we expect, or even desire.

Like John and James, we may be eager for the glory. Like Luke (Skywalker, not the apostle), we may be eager to be heroes and run off and fight the evil Empire. It is good to consider just what that means. “I’m not afraid,” you may be saying. “You will be,” comes the ominous response.

Leave a comment

Filed under IGRC for Unity, Lectionary Reflection

Star Wars Mystery Menu Dinner Party

IMG_3900

The menu for the Star Wars mystery menu dinner party.

For my daughter’s 7th birthday, we threw her a Mystery Menu Dinner Party. It is a three-course meal. Each course includes four items. The menu then consists of 12 different things, and all three courses must be ordered at the very start of the meal. No switching after the orders have been placed. The catch? The 12 items are not named clearly. The menu has simply clues as to what the item might actually be. In addition, three of the 12 items are their utensils.

The first time we did this, the kids had a blast. I promised the kids at the beginning of the dinner that all 9 food items were common kid-friendly foods. I also told them that, for tonight only, they were allowed to eat with their hands. They would be given unlimited napkins, and if they made a mess, it was okay. One of my favorite moments of that first dinner was when a little girl’s first course include animals crackers, a knife, a fork, and a spoon. Two courses later she was given a plate with Jell-O, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese, and pudding.

For her 8th and 9th birthday parties, we have done the same thing. Some of the kids have now been to three consecutive mystery dinners, and they love them. This year, we added a twist. The menu had a Star Wars theme, and I added drinks. The menu consisted of a total of 15 items – 9 foods, 3 utensils, 3 drinks – and three courses. For one of the courses, one of the kids ended up with a plate, a spoon, and three drinks. Earlier though, he became the only kid with the sloppy joe and the bun in the same course. He was quite proud of having an actual sandwich. Here were the menu items, and what the item actually meant.

  1. Sarlacc – Gummy worms
  2. Bantha Fodder – Sloppy Joe
  3. Princess Leia’s Hairdo – Hamburger bun
  4. Dagobah Swamp – Applesauce
  5. Ewok Fingers – Cocktail wieners in barbecue sauce
  6. Tie Fighters – Cheese and crackers, put togehter on a toothpick to resemble a Tie-Fighter.
  7. Rancor Legs – BBQ Chicken legs
  8. Thermal Detonators – Cuties (small, easily pealable oranges)
  9. Light Sabres – Pretzel Rods dipped in green-colored almond bark.
  10. Hydrospanner – Spoon
  11. Tusken Raider Spear – Fork
  12. Driod Antennae – Toothpicks
  13. Darth Vaderade – Fruit Punch
  14. Bantha Milk – Milk with one drop of blue food coloring
  15. Hoth Soup – Water

Follow The Fat Pastor on Facebook

Follow @FatPastor on Twitter

star wars menu

You can download this and paste it right into a doc to print your menus.

Princess Leia Hair, Light Saber, Dagobah Swamp, Sarlac, with Darth Vaderade to drink.

Princess Leia Hair, Light Saber, Dagobah Swamp, Sarlac, with Darth Vaderade to drink.

IMG_3903

My girl enjoying with some Hoth Soup, Darth Vaderade, Bantha Fodder, a Droid Antenna, and a Thermal Detonator.

2 Comments

Filed under Food, Personal Reflection

The Star Wars that I used to know

I love Star Wars.  I’ve seen the original trilogy countless times – but not the original original in many years.  I bought the re-releases immediately and loved them, at first.  I loved the added details, and even some of the deleted scenes.  I thought the Jabba scene in A New Hope was weird, but I let it slide.  I missed the old celebration music at the end of Return of the Jedi, but seeing the Palpatine statue get toppled was kind of cool.  Then the more I watched, the more I felt uneasy.  Of course, the most egregious change was that Han shot first.

If you don’t know what “Han shot first” means, then you don’t truly love Star Wars.  Find someone that does and ask them, then sit back and wait for a good 15 minute rant to ensue.  I won’t go into the details, but when Lucas changed the original movie, he changed the development of one of the greatest characters in movie history.  He sterilized Han and ripped out part of the heart of the movie.

It was as if Martin Scorcese decided to remake The Godfather trilogy, and decided that Michael should have Fredo beaten up and shipped to Mexico instead of having him go fishing.

Then the next trilogy came out.  I remember leaving Phantom Menace a little perplexed.  I felt like I liked it, but again I felt uneasy.  I enjoyed the light saber battles.  I enjoyed seeing a younger Yoda, but I missed him as a puppet.  I couldn’t put my finger on just what was the problem, partly because there were so many of them.  Yes, Jar Jar was annoying.  Yes, the kid was whiny.  Yes, Darth Maul was underdeveloped and dispatched much too quickly.  Yes, the strange opening story that included trade embargoes and legal negotiations seemed disjointed.

Then I realized, it was the metachlorian.  In the original, the Force was a mysterious, spiritual experience.  “May the Force be with you,” was a spiritual salutation on par with, “Peace be with you.” If one of the characters had ever said, “And also with you,” it would have felt right. The Force was clouded in mystery, but it was attainable.  “The force is strong with this one,” referred to Luke’s eagerness, inner courage, and desire for justice.  The force was something that we could all tap into.  It was something within reach, even if it was from a galaxy far, far away.  The force was a reminder that there is something mysterious, a power that we can never truly understand.

There were theological ramifications for this.  You could put away the targeting computer, and trust in something more powerful. Even in the midst of amazing technological advances, there was something more.  The power to destroy planets was insignificant next to the power of the force.  Isn’t this the good news of the Bible, after all?

The greatest powers on earth was Egypt, but God saved the band of rebel slaves.  Then it was the Babylonians, but God was able to gather the remnant of Israel and save them.  Then it was Rome.  Rome had the power to destroy entire cities, but it was insignificant next to the power of grace. The Methodist in me screamed: “The Force is Prevenient Grace.” It is the power that flows through us all before we even realize it. The Force precedes even our undersanding. Stars Wars taught us that there was something beyond death that can be a source of hope, but it is the power of love that is truly the ultimate power of the universe.

Then in Phantom Menace, they pull out a syringe and count metachlorians?  What the hell?  Now it’s just a chemical and genetic accident?  It is something that be counted, measured, and predicted?  That’s just wrong.  It’s wrong on so many levels in so many ways.  I don’t care if it George Lucas’s movie, and he can do whatever he wants with it.  If DaVinci decided he wanted to put a big cheesy grin on Mona Lisa, he would be wrong.

So here’s a parody video.  It is really well done, and it sums up very well how I feel about Star Wars and George Lucas.

Follow The Fat Pastor on Facebook

Follow on Twitter

Leave a comment

Filed under Media

Star Wars the Musical

This is, without a doubt, the greatest thing I have ever seen on the interwebs.

There are six parts, and each is about 15 minutes.  To be honest, I haven’t watched it all yet, but so far it is awesome.  It combines clips from the movie, a few decent singers, music from popular musicals, and an impressive use of sweatpants and sweatshirts. The videos were supposed to be embedded into this blog, but for some reason that is not working.  So I just included the six links that will take you directly to a musical that took place “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…”

Act One

http://vimeo.com/22019730

http://vimeo.com/22019808

http://vimeo.com/22019890

Act Two

http://vimeo.com/21995764

http://vimeo.com/21995630

http://vimeo.com/21995539

Leave a comment

Filed under Media