Is the dark side stronger?

It feels as though I would be remiss if I did not post some thoughts on the latest resurgence of the Star Wars craze that seems to take over the majority of movie buffs every 20 years or so. With the release of the latest episode, several friends and family members (and ourselves) were encouraged to revisit the first 6 episodes and relive the great joy of watching good versus evil, droids versus humans, and light sabers versus laser guns (among other things). I confess that I have had the opportunity to watch the first 6 episodes no less that three times now – what with the Christmas holiday break and living with males who were all-too-excited to watch the movies over, and over, and over. But I must also confess that I found myself intrigued again primarily with the scenes of Luke Skywalker being trained by Yoda in Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back. Several before me have drawn the analogy but I could not help but recognize it myself as I watched the training take place from the wise Jedi Master, Yoda, to his stubborn young apprentice, Luke Skywalker. It almost felt as though Yoda was instructing Skywalker how to fight off evil with the power of the Holy Spirit.

Yoda: …a Jedi’s strength flows from the Force. But beware of the dark side. Anger, fear, aggression; the dark side of the force are they. Easily they flow, quick to join you in a fight. If once you start down the dark path, forever will it dominate your destiny, consume you it will…

Much of the training between Yoda and Skywalker revolves around training Skywalker to tap into the good side of the Force to be ready to fight the dark side of the Force and resist the temptations to be drawn to the dark side. Yoda admonishes Skywalker several times that anger leads to the dark side. And as we watch the training unfold, the viewer can’t help but sense the truth in Yoda’s words to our own lives – here on earth, without light sabers, but with similar battles between good and evil. Is there something to be learned for our own lives, in practice, from the wisdom of the Star Wars movies?

Luke: …is the dark side (of the Force) stronger?

Yoda: No, no, no. Quicker, easier, more seductive.

In Matthew 7:13, Jesus tells us: “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many…” There is something for us to recognize as we go about our days. Our battle is of good and evil is more than just what is readily obvious (Ephesians 6:12). We must put into practice the habits that will help us tap more into Jesus and His ways, His truths, His teachings. As I look ahead to this year (coming off the New Year celebration) I find myself wanting to be studying more of Jesus and who He is and filling my mind with truth from the Bible so that I am ready for anything that life throws my way. I guess I see it similar to what Yoda was trying to teach Skywalker – we should be immersing ourselves in Biblical practices and teachings so that we are strengthened to not give into the temptations of things that lead us down a dreadful path (obviously, my interpretation ).

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.… Ephesians 6:12-13

by His grace -