by Heather Bock
“for we walk by faith, not by sight”
II Corinthians 5:7
I didn’t grow up watching the Star Wars movies like my husband and many others did. The first time I watched them was in the theater, but it was when they were rereleased in the late 1990s. Therefore, I don’t have as much emotional attachment as others might, but I do enjoy watching the movies and following the story (sometimes semi-following: my eight year old son, Mr. C, was a big help during the last film, as he often leaned over to whisper explanations about new characters). So when Rogue One came out, I was disappointed when my husband took Mr. C without me. I was glad a few weeks later when I had time with him, my brother, and nephew to go to the theater and watch it (although Mr. C and I waited until the intense trailers were over before entering this time).
However, maybe because of my lack of strong attachment to the Star Wars story, I didn’t find Rogue One to be too engaging. I’m not saying it wasn’t exciting–it was that–but I couldn’t connect with the most of the characters. Two of the characters did catch my heart, though: Chirrut Îmwe and Baze Malbus.
For those who haven’t watched the movie, Îmwe and Malbus are temple guardians for the Temple of the Kyber, which is in the middle of being stripped by the Empire to power the new Death Star, Darth Vader’s newest and biggest weapon and space station. Their jobs are really defunct, but they stay on, living on the street to preach about the Force. Or rather, Îmwe preaches about the Force. Malbus is pragmatic, without much faith in the Force. If he ever had any faith, it has been shaken, so he’s put his reliance on himself, trusting in his very capable weapon, a heavy repeater cannon (my son’s favorite gun in the whole Star Wars series so far) and his equally capable ability to wield it.
In contrast, his best friend Îmwe trusts not in himself but in the Force and secondarily, in the love and protection of his friend Malbus. His constant prayer of sorts is, “I am one with the Force, and the Force is with me.” Several times in the movie, Îmwe has to rely on the Force to protect him from lasers flying all around him and is able to fight formidably and successfully with his staff using only his hearing and his faith in the Force.
Îmwe’s faith not only helps him, but it influences those he loves. I was moved when I watched as (spoiler alert!) Malbus in the end symbolically drops his reliance on himself by leaving his weapon and relying on the Force to try to help the badly injured Îmwe.
Îmwe’s beliefs might be based on eastern pantheism, like those who believe we can be one with the universe, but I believe Christians can learn from Îmwe, as well. We think we can see, but really, in many ways, we also are blind going along in this world. Without the eyes of Jesus guiding us, we wouldn’t know the best way to go. We also need to trust Him and follow Him as we fight our battles. We lean on friends, too, but ultimately, we have to put our faith in Jesus.
I’ve watched friends step out in this faith through the whizzing difficulties of foster care and adoption. I’ve read stories of missionaries selling everything and heading into an unknown country. Greg and I even did this when we said, “Anything, God” and followed His leading to move to a small town in Texas. Often the reliance is for much smaller matters. It can be like a very scary conversation I had recently that I knew God was calling me to initiate.
The beauty is that God will use us as we step out, just as the Force uses Îmwe in Rogue One. In addition, as we do so, we will influence others who love us and are watching us to do the same. Though we are blind, through our faith in Him, God can make us formidable warriors in His kingdom.
Journal the Word NKJV Bible Giveaway Winner
I couldn’t reach the winner of the giveaway for the Journal the Word Bible, so I drew a new name. The newest winner is Beauty for Ashes. Congratulations! Please contact me at heather.bock[at]glimpsesofjesus.com with your address within a week, and I will send it to you as soon as possible. If I don’t hear from you in a week, I’ll do a new drawing.