More Clark Kents, Fewer Supermen

clark kentThere’s generally a love/hate relationship with Superman. I think it’s because at the heart of the character he can’t be beat (green rocks withstanding). He can do everything. Incredible strength, he can fly, X-ray and heat vision, and he’s nearly impenetrable.

In addition to that, Derek Zoolander says he’s really, really, ridiculously good looking.

By every definition of the word, Superman is the perfect superhero.

It’s no wonder so many people and athletes use the Superman persona and logo (see: Cam Newton , Dwight Howard and Shaq) as a way of representing their success and ability.

My middle son fell in love with Superman when he realized that his name (Cal L.) was the same as Supes’ real name (Kal-El).

It’s a fun comparison and a great goal to strive for.

The problem is, we have to many people trying to be Superman.

They all want to swoop in and save the day and then leave.

Everyone wants to be the hero…for a moment. Help someone in need through one charity event? Sure. Do the fun thing with the kids? Absolutely.

We live for the Instagram moment. That time where we can feel the best about ourselves, grab a selfie, and then leave and wait for the inevitable glory and adoration that will come via likes or loves on social media.

What we don’t always realize is that we’re leaving someone behind when we do the superhero thing. Yes, we’ve rescued someone in that moment or we’ve been a hero for a second, but trouble will be back.

That’s one of the great lessons from Daredevil season 2 – a hero’s work is never done.

Enter a guy like Clark Kent.

While Superman is off doing the dramatic and amazing, Clark is quietly picking up the pieces and helping Lois and the others hold their lives together on a day to day basis. He was still a hero, just a different kind of hero.

Jesus was the same way.

He rescued people from sickness and made lame parties awesome (see: his first miracle) but he didn’t then fly away heroically.

Instead, Jesus wanted to clean up the mess. He wanted to get to the thing behind the thing and rescue people from that.

Why was the woman at the well there by herself? Because she had been using sex with men as a way of covering her real pain. Jesus wanted to see her delivered and not just rescued.

That’s called discipleship.

And Jesus called all those who follow him to be that kind of person.

We need fewer people living for Superman moments.

We need more Clark Kents.

More men and women ready to do the heroic if necessary, but more importantly, they are willing to get down and dirty in the day to day of life with others.

That’s called discipleship.

And Jesus called all those who follow him to be that kind of hero.


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