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June 7, 2012

Tim Kolodziej: Like “The Avengers,” you can help save the world

NEW CASTLE — “If you're God's child you have been given an identity you didn't earn and blessed with potential beyond your natural gifts.”  — Paul David Tripp

So, I finally saw “The Avengers.”

I know, I know. Me and two guys in Chewton were the only ones who hadn’t seen it.

Full disclosure: I really enjoyed it.

It’s filled with action and suspense, as you might expect. But I also loved the humor and, even more important, the humanity of each character.

The film also made me think. Sure, it’s a summer blockbuster and I’m aware that I was supposed to suspend all deep thought for a couple of hours, but I just couldn’t.

So today I’d like to share some of those nuggets I’ve jotted down, especially for all the young people out there who have committed to following Christ in their daily lives. I know it’s a struggle. I know you are being pulled in many different directions. I know you are bombarded by the influences of the world through TV, magazines, the Internet and your friends at school.

So I just want to offer a word of encouragement for your journey. I know the dark forces are always popping up somewhere, but if you look hard enough, you can find God everywhere — even at the local cinema.

And, believe it or not, you have plenty in common with “The Avengers,” both good and bad.

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first.

•In our natural state, we’re all deeply flawed and self-absorbed = Romans 3:23

When our heroes aren’t “in costume,” Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Bruce Banner and Natasha Romanoff struggle with doubt, anger issues and pride.

Sounds a lot like me. Maybe you, too.

•We face a tricky enemy who wants to destroy us = 1 Peter 5:8

Like Loki in the film, Satan wants to create fear and doubt in your mind so you will continually be focused on self — and not be concerned with the good of others. Your arch-nemesis wants to keep you looking IN and AROUND instead of UP.

What do the voices inside your head say to you each morning? You’re fat ... you have zits ... you aren’t any good at sports ... you are stupid ... (fill in the blank with any number of choices.)

They’re lies and accusations from the pit of hell.

•Sometimes, it looks as if our world is falling apart = Psalm 46:2-3

In the movie we see all kinds of physical destruction, but we deal with loss in plenty of other ways as well.

Your best friend moved away. You flunked your English test. You got cut from the baseball team. Your uncle was arrested for selling drugs.

And that was just yesterday afternoon.

You can’t even bear to think of what might happen tomorrow.

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