When darkness covers the world, what brave band of heroes will save the day? The answer is looking at you in the mirror and sitting next to you in the pews each Sunday. God gives each of us power to bring hope and light to our world. On Sunday we began our a new sermon series called Discovering Your Spiritual Superpower. Throughout this series, we are highlighting a different superhero each week to learn more about our own spiritual superpowers and gifts. On Sunday, we talked about Spider-Man.
Spider-Man wasn’t always Spider-Man, rather he started out as an awkward, nerdy teenager named Peter Parker. Nothing about him would make you think he was super. On a school field trip to a lab though, he was bitten by a radio-active spider. Overnight, his skinny body was transformed into a much more muscular young man. He discovered he could cling to almost any surface, had genius level intellect, superhuman strength and ability, and could shoot spider webs from his wrists. At first, he used his strength for his own benefit and fun- flirting with a girl he liked and winning wrestling matches. He has an opportunity to stop a robbery but decided not too. Later, that same robber stole from his Aunt May and Uncle Ben and killed his uncle. That devastating loss forced Spider-Man to realize “with great power comes great responsibility.”
In Luke 12:42-48, Jesus told the parable of a manager and servants, and at the end of the parable he stated, “to whom much has been given, much is required.” Both Jesus and Uncle Ben shared how with great power and gifts comes great responsibility. God has given each of us a spiritual superpower to serve God and the world. This power does not come from our own strength, but through the Holy Spirit. Acts 1:8 affirms, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come on you.” The power of the Holy Spirit is inside of us, equipping us to serve. There are consequences for not using the spiritual superpowers God gives us. Spider-Man realized that when he didn’t stand up to fight crime, people’s lives are at stake. Peter Parker initially let personal preferences (e.g. disordered attachments) get in the way of his calling. Similarly, there are consequences for us and sometimes the wellbeing for others when we choose not to use our gifts to serve. Ultimately, with great spiritual superpowers comes great responsibility.
If you are not sure what your spiritual superpower is, we encourage you to visit http://www.umc.org/what-we-believe/spiritual-gifts-online-assessment to take the Spiritual Gifts Assessment. Additionally, we invite you to join us for the Serving from the Heart 6-week study beginning on Thursday June 21, which is a study that helps you discover your spiritual gifts and how to use them.
Monday- Luke 12:35-48
Tuesday- Acts 1:1-11
Wednesday- Romans 12:3-8
Thursday- 1 Corinthians 12:1-11
Friday- Psalm 113
Questions to Consider and Discuss:
1. What is your spiritual superpower?
2. Where have you seen the quote “with great power comes great responsibility” come into play in your life?