**WARNING - Star Wars: The Last Jedi - SPOILERS**
As we draw near to the end of another year and prepare to start a new one, I thought I'd share a bit of inspiration that came to me as I watched The Last Jedi earlier this week.
In the final portion of the film, Luke Skywalker returns to, alone, face his old apprentice, Kylo Ren, and an entire First Order assault squadron.
Upon seeing his old master, Kylo Ren instructs his soldiers to "fire every gun we've got at that man!" Despite being met with some resistance due to the command being "overkill," Ren's soldiers comply and the full force of their squadron's firepower is unleashed upon Luke.
After the dust settles, much to the dismay of Kylo, Luke emerges from the smoking crater and casually brushes the dust off of his shoulder.
When watching all of this unfold, I couldn't help but think about the Master Teacher. He, too, had the full force of Satan's wrath unleashed upon Him. But, like the Master Jedi, He emerged victorious!
"He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay." (Matthew 26:8)
He was tempted...
He was betrayed...
He was forsaken...
He was beaten...
He was mocked...
He was scourged...
He was crucified...
But, He arose!
"...Jesus Christ our Lord...declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead." (Romans 1:3-4)
Just as Luke's actions sparked hope for the rebels in the movie, Christ's actions give us hope. True, unfading hope of life eternal!
"Inasmuch then as the children have partaken of flesh and blood, He Himself likewise shared in the same, that through death He might destroy him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and release those who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage." (Hebrews 2:14-15)
"And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him..." (Hebrews 5:9)
Have you obeyed Him? (Mark 16:16)
As you go into 2018, do so with the knowledge that we serve a risen Savior who will give us the strength to face and overcome each and every challenge that might come our way in the year ahead. We serve a risen Savior who gives us spiritual life through His blood!
May we all be more committed, more inspired, more zealous, and more desirous of His perfection in the days ahead!
"For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works." (Titus 2:11-14)