Friday, August 25, 2006

Batman

In my life I have a collection of people, fictional and real, who are heroes of mine. I believe one of the reasons our heroes appeal to us is because they have some quality we wish we had. Over the next few days I am going to talk about the heroes I have and the qualities they have which I want in my life.

If you were to ask me who is the best superhero of all time I would say, without a doubt, Batman. He doesn’t have any superpowers or come from another planet. Let’s face it, it would be very easy to be a superhero if you had powers which gave you an advantage over the bad guys. Batman is unique because it is his discipline which allows him to be a superhero.

Yes, it helps to have the Wayne fortune so you can have all the cool stuff associated with Batman, but Bruce Wayne is only able to be Batman because of the disciplined life he leads. He has to be disciplined in various martial arts, in science, crime scene investigation, and a number of other areas. It is these disciplines, rather than superpowers, which give Batman an advantage over the bad guys.

I look at my life and I realize that often I am not as disciplined as I should be. If I am every going to accomplish anything with my writing I need to be more disciplined in my writing. I need to be more disciplined in my ministry and making sure that the little things are taken care of, and not just the big picture. Discipline is an area of my life I find is lacking.
All athletes practice strict self-control. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run straight to the goal with purpose in every step. I am not like a boxer who misses his punches. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified (1 Corinthians 9:25-27, NLT).
One of the qualities we are to have as Christians is discipline. This discipline is seen in two ways. First it is seen in the things we don’t do. An athlete will many times deny himself/herself things that ordinary people indulge in. From pop (soda) to late nights athletes will put certain things off limits. As Christians there needs to be things in our lives that we put off limits. We are simply not going to do them because they are bad for us and damage our relationship with God.

The second way our discipline is seen is by the things we do. An athlete will spend time in the weight room, running, and practicing in order to become better. We need spend time doing the things which will make us better Christians. This includes things like meeting with other Christians, Bible study, and prayer, but it also requires us to obey everything Jesus has taught. It means loving people and serving those in need. These are disciplines that we need to have in our lives.

Batman is an example of discipline and self-control. It is this quality that I most admire about Batman. Why is Batman able to be so disciplined? It is because of a vow he made the night his parents were killed. Bruce Wayne’s discipline is the result of his trying to honor the vow to his parents.

The only way we will have discipline in our lives is if we have a reason, a goal we want to accomplish. As Christians that goal should be to honor the vow we made to God when we gave our lives to Jesus. A disciplined life is the natural result of a life given away to Jesus.

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