In pm's words
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May 5, 2019, 9:00 AM

Of Marvel and Faith, the last part...


Avengers: Infinity War

This is it. The beginning of the end(game). All previous 20 MCU films have led to this point. Throughout the series we have received glimpses of this powerful evil that is seeking out the Infinity Stones. If you never watched through the credits of a Marvel movie, you’d probably be a little confused about who this evil person is. He has only made a few appearances in the films themselves (mostly Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy).

Thanos is coming. And he’s got a job to do.

The film begins on the spaceship housing the Asgardian refugees as they are making their way (presumably) to Earth. And it is a mess.

Thanos and the Children of Thanos have ravaged the ship and the people. Half of the community has been slaughtered ‘for peace and prosperity.’ Thor, Loki, and Hulk attempt to stop Thanos, but they cannot. They fail.

In his last moments, Heimdell uses his power to call the Bifrost to send Hulk back to earth to warn the people and those who can help. Loki tries to sweet talk his way closer to Thanos to assassinate him, but he already possesses the Power and the Space Stones (two of the six). Thanos stops him mid strike, and ends his life.

Thor is distraught. So many people he loves he has watched die. He vows to take out Thanos.

Thanos laughs and he and his ‘children’ leave through a portal and the spaceship explodes.

Hulk is sent to the New York Sanctum where Doctor Strange is, and he arrives just in time as the Children of Thanos have arrived on earth to forcibly take the Time Stone (which resides in Doctor Strange’s amulet – The Eye of Agamotto) and the Mind Stone (which is firmly implanted in Vision’s forehead).

Iron Man, Spider-man, and Doctor Strange are able to (somewhat) hold off the powerful tandem of Ebony Maw and Cull Obsidian. But, Doctor Strange is still captured (with the Time Stone still around his neck) and Iron Man and Spider-man go along for the ride in their spaceship as it heads back to Thanos’ home planet of Titan.

The other part of this powerful foursome – Corvus Glaive and Proxima Midnight seek out the Mind Stone. They attack Vision by surprise (which is surprising in and of itself) as he is off in hiding with Wanda Maximoff (Scarlet Witch). They are helped by Captain America, Black Widow, and Falcon. But, Vision is gravely injured. They need to find a place that not only can help his injuries, but also to help remove the Mind Stone from him. They head off to Wakanda.

Meanwhile, the Guardians of the Galaxy have answered the distress call sent out by the Asgardian refugees and they find the ship’s wreckage. They also find the floating body of Thor. After retrieving him and reviving him, he says that they need to create a powerful weapon – a Thanos killing weapon. And there is only one place to make that happen – the forge at Nidavellir. Thor leaves with Rocket Racoon and Groot.

Quill, Gamora, Drax, and Mantis head to Knowhere and The Collector who has the Reality Stone. They hope to get there before Thanos does. But, after a brief glimmer of hope, they discover that they are too late. Thanos has already arrived and taken the Reality Stone. He captures Gamora and takes her aboard his ship.

On the ship, he uses the torture of Gamora’s ‘adopted’ sister – Nebula – to reveal the location of the Soul Stone which is on the planet Vormir. When they arrive on Vormir, the keeper of the Soul Stone (Red Skull – the main villain from Captain America: The First Avenger) states that in order to obtain the soul stone, one must sacrifice that which they love the most.

Gamora thinks that this will definitely stop Thanos, because as far as she knows Thanos loves no one. Unfortunately, he deeply loves Gamora as his daughter. He sacrifices her by throwing from the cliff and discovering the Soul Stone is in his hand. He heads to Titan where he intends to meet up with the other Children of Thanos who hopefully have the Time and Mind Stones.

During this time, Nebula escapes captivity and meets up with the Guardians. She implores them that they have to go to Titan to stop Thanos. That’s where he’s going to be. Luckily they arrive well before Thanos does, but they get to meet up with Iron Man, Spider-Man, and Doctor Strange.

They hatch a plan in order to take the powerful Infinity Gauntlet from Thanos’ hand. As they plan, they notice that Doctor Strange is behaving rather oddly. He states that he has looked into the future and seen millions of potential outcomes in stopping Thanos. Only one of them works. That’s the path they set themselves on.

Thanos finally arrives on Titan and realizes that his plan has gone just off course. He fights with Stark and the others. Mentioning that the reason he is obtaining these stones and the course he’s set himself on is a righteous and altruistic one. He only wants to save the universe – by killing half of all its population. He feels that there are too many beings and not enough resources. For him, this is the only way.

The combined forces of Starlord, Drax, Nebula, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Mantis, and Doctor Strange almost gets the gauntlet off of Thanos. But, that plan is thwarted when Quill realizes that Thanos killed Gamora. Thanos recovers and knocks down all those attacking him and Doctor Strange reluctantly gives him the Time Stone.

While all this is happening, Thor, Rocket, and Groot help create the powerful Thanos killing weapon called Stormbreaker. It is a mighty weapon that even has the ability to summon the Bifrost. Thor almost kills himself to obtain this weapon, but as soon as he gets it (with a handle made from Groot’s limb) he does indeed summon the Bifrost and the three make their way to Earth.

On Earth, a massive battle is taking place in Wakanda. Proxima Midnight and Cull Obsidian unleash a massive army on the Wakanda Army, led by Captain America and Black Panther with the help of The Winter Soldier, Warmachine, Falcon, Black Widow, and Bruce Banner in the Hulkbuster suit (Hulk is apparently too afraid to fight). This forward army is trying to bide enough time for Black Panther’s (King T’Challa) sister Shuri to safely remove the Mind Stone from Vision so that it can be destroyed by Scarlett Witch.

The battle moves back and forth, and the tides seemingly turn when Thor, Rocket, and Groot arrive. Thor is able to use the full power of abilities. In this moment he is truly the God of Thunder.

He is almost able to single handidly take out the entire evil force. In the course of the battle the rest of the Children of Thanos find their demise as well. Everything seems ok.

Until Thanos arrives.

Many superheroes attempt to slow Thanos down as much as possible as he makes his walk towards Vision. Vision pleads with Wanda to destroy the stone, even if it kills him because it would be worse if he obtained.

With frustration, mourning, fear, and anger in her eyes. Wanda is able to destroy the Mind Stone – and her love, Vision in the process – before Thanos gets to them. They’ve finally won and stopped this mad Titan.

Except, Thanos uses the power of the Time Stone to turn back the clocks and literally rip the Mind Stone out of Vision’s head. He now has the full power of all six Infinity Stones. He can finally accomplish his goal.

Yet, just before he lifts his hand, Stormbreaker slams into Thanos and Thor pushes it further and further into his chest. Thanos taunts Thor and says he should’ve gone for his head.

*Snap*

Thanos disappears through a portal and everything becomes eerie and quiet. All of sudden, people all around the heroes, the world, and the entire universe begin turning into dust.

At the Battle of Wakanda – Black Panther, Falcon, Scarlet Witch, The Winter Soldier, Groot are lost. On Titan, Drax, Mantis, Quill, Spider-man, and Doctor Strange turn to dust. Yet, before he vanishes, Strange looks Stark in the eyes and tells him that this is the only way.

Our heroes have lost. Thanos won.

Talk about a gut punch. We’ve been used to seeing these powerful individuals win. Sure, with plenty of setbacks and losses (especially for Thor), but ultimately they win the day.

This time they don’t. All hope seems lost (which will become even more evident in the beginning of Avengers: Endgame). What in the world can they do?

There is so much going on in this film and so much to draw from, the I only want to focus on a few things. Back in May of 2018, our Nerd Word group have a wonderful discussion about the faith themes present in this film, but we didn’t touch on what I’m about to state here.

Thanos sees himself as a savior. And, in a way – he has good intentions with what he wants to do. He wants to see life thrive; to be beautiful in all its unique ways. But, the only way he sees that being possible is to remove half of the universe’s population. In a twisted way, Thanos sees himself as the father of a new world.

As I contemplate on his role in the universe, I cannot help but compare him to Barabbas. Barabbas is the one that the crowds demanded instead of Jesus as Pontius Pilate gave them a choice. The crowds chose the fighter. They chose the one who physically stood up to the Roman Empire and chose the one who it is implied – killed for the greater good of the people of Israel.

That’s who they wanted their savior to be. That’s the kind of savior that Thanos sees himself being. In his mind, it’s the only way.

However, we know (now) that this isn’t the only way. God finds another way to bring hope, life, and love into the world in and through Jesus. Jesus is the one who boldly looks creation in the face and says the same words that Doctor Strange does do Tony – This is the only way.

We know the story isn’t over. But it hurts right now. Bad. Just as it hurt for those on Good Friday when Jesus died on the cross. There wasn’t any possible way to recover from this. Their leader was dead. The one they thought to be the savior of the world – the literal Son of God – had died. Violently. In a humiliating fashion.

Our heroes were defeated in Infinity War. They were humiliated by the one who accomplished his goal. The ones who no one thought could be defeated weren’t able to win. How do we come back from this?

Again, we look to the wise and sage words of Doctor Strange – there was only one outcome out of millions and millions of scenarios where they won. This is it. What does that look like? Especially since Strange was taken by the Snap-ture? Only time will tell. Hopefully our heroes will be vigilant enough, trusting enough, to see it through.

This film also features a lot of other elements of faith – exile and journey, sacrifice, and how we approach impending death. But, I think as heavy as this film is, I’ll leave y’all to ponder those thoughts.

 

 

These last few weeks have been really interesting. I’ve greatly enjoyed writing these summaries and faith reflections on films that I have greatly enjoyed. Getting to watch them again gave me a deeper understanding of not only each individual film, but how integral they are all together (except maybe The Incredible Hulk…). 22 films. Over 50 hours of comic action. Battles, jokes, tears, surprises, and all the emotions throughout have been a part of this journey for me. It really is an excellent series of films.

Re-watching these films through a lens of faith has been eye-opening as well. Being able to see glimmers of the gospel at work in these films has helped deepen my own faith. Seeing how God is at work even in the places that we don’t expect.

I love seeing those interesting spaces where God is at work. I love looking at things through the eyes of faith. I love talking with others about nerdy, geeky, and faithful stuff. In fact, I kind of like writing about it too (and I should at almost 40 full pages and counting).

But, I have one more film to summarize. One more film to reflect upon in faith. If you haven’t seen Avengers: Endgame yet – you need to see it. Not just so you can read further on down this page, but because it is a phenomenal film. I believe it is my personal favorite film in the entire MCU.

So, without further delay…

 

Avengers: Endgame

The film opens on Clint Barnes’ (Hawkeye) farm with his family. He’s teaching his oldest daughter how to fire an arrow and she’s good. The rest of the family is getting ready to eat lunch outside. Yet, in that moment, literally as Barnes turns his back to each member, they all turn to dust. He doesn’t know what’s going on (he isn’t in the battle taking place in Wakanda). This moment reminds us of the fear, sadness, and confusion that existed for everyone in his shoes. It’s a hard moment to start this film on.

Next, we see that Nebula and Stark are trying to make their way back to Earth. They’ve gotten their ship fixed enough, but it doesn’t seem like it is enough. They’ve been lost in space for weeks. Life support and food are running out. Stark knows he’s failed and all he wants – all he hopes – is that Pepper Potts (his fiancé, his one-time assistant and current CEO of Stark Enterprises) will be able to hear his messages of pain, love, loss, and apology.

Yet, in the middle of space, they are found by the only person who could find them – Captain Marvel. She takes them back to Earth where the world is still reeling from the affects of Thanos’ ‘snapture.’

They want to reverse it all. They need to find Thanos. Nebula tells them where he is and off they go.

They discover that Thanos is living on an uninhabited planet. It’s just him. No defenses at all. And he’s gravely hurt. He isn’t putting up much of a fight, or any fight at all.

They notice that his gauntlet and the arm it is on is destroyed and scarred. Thanos knew that the Avengers and their friends would come to try to reverse what he did. So, he did the only thing he could do. He used the power of all six stones to destroy themselves and it nearly killed him in the process.

Overcome with rage and sadness, Thor finishes what he promised he’d do after Thanos killed Loki – that he’d die for that.

Even after finally defeating Thanos, they haven’t won anything. Nothing changed. In fact, nothing appears to be able to change at all.

The film then fast forwards five years into the future.

Things are not prosperous. Earth (and presumably the rest of the universe) is still in mourning. There is no joy. Just depression. Just apathy. Black Widow has taken the role of leading what is left of the Avengers because people still need to be helped, but it isn’t the same. Yet, it’s the only thing that keeps her sane and not falling into a puddle of tears and emotions.

Yet, in this moment, something from the past – something from the dead – comes back. Scott Lang – who has been stuck in the Quantum Realm since Thanos’ snap comes back (with the help of a rather large rat). He makes his way to Avenger’s headquarters to tell them all that there might be away to save everyone. Why? Because time works differently in the Quantum Realm. Perhaps they can make a ‘time machine’ to go back and get the stones to prevent or reverse what Thanos did.

But, they’ll need help. They need Tony Stark.

But, Tony is different now. He’s married. He’s a father. In many ways, the Snap of Thanos did him good. His life might actually be better than it was before. But, he’s one of the few.

They plead with him to help. To set things right. He balks.

But, it wouldn’t be Tony Stark if he didn’t try. So, he does. And he thinks he figured it out. He figured out time travel through the Quantum Realm. But, he’s at a crossroads. He loves what he has right now. He doesn’t want to change that. He vows to help – with the urging and permission of Pepper – only to reverse those who were lost. Not to prevent it. Not to erase the last five years.

So, they all get to work and devise a plan. They’ll go back to specific moments in time to obtain all six stones ­before Thanos gets any of them. They’ll come back to the future do their own ‘snap’ and bring everyone back.

There are four groups.

Bruce Banner (who now is fully the Hulk in strength and appearance, but all Banner in mind and attitude), Captain America, Iron Man, and Ant-man will go get the Mind, Space, and Time Stones during the Battle of New York.

Hawkeye and Black Widow will get the Soul Stone from Vormir.

They also travel with Warmachine and Nebula who will take the Power Stone from Morag before Peter Quill does.

Finally Rocket and a broken and depressed Thor will go to Asgard to get the Reality Stone.

There is one kink in this whole plan. Each person only has enough ‘fuel’ to make two trips. One to the past, and one back to the present. They have to get this done. They all agree to it, and all step on to the time machine platform.

In 2012 New York, Cap, Stark, Banner, and Lang search out for each of the respective stones to get. Banner goes for the Time Stone while Cap, Stark, and Lang work together to get both the Mind and Space Stones.

Banner confronts The Ancient One (who has the Eye of Agamotto around her neck) about needing the Stone, but she is unwilling to part ways with it because doing so will create divergent timelines. Only after a lot of talking and realizing that this is Doctor Strange’s idea does she agree – with one condition. That each Stone must be put back at the exact moment they were taken. That way the timeline can remain constant – nothing changes in the future. This was the easiest stone to obtain.

The rest of the New York group have a bit more difficulty, they are able to get the mind stone ‘easily’ enough. Captain America pretends to be that timeline’s current Cap and just takes the case with Loki’s Scepter in it since that is where the Mind Stone is at the moment. They have a bit more trouble with the Space Stone. They obtain it, but get stopped on the bottom floor of Stark Tower. After a bit of an argument, some confusion, and a debilitated 2012 Iron Man (thanks to the tiny hijinks of Ant-Man), the Space Stone ends up at the feet of Loki. He, of course, takes it and uses its power to flee.

They think they’ve failed altogether, but Cap has another idea. They’ll go further back in time where they can get the Space Stone and more of the fuel they need to make more time jumps.

Thankfully that plan works. In the process Captain America sees the love of his life – Peggy Carter – and Stark gets to meet his father and have a good conversation with him.

Three stones down, three more to go.

In 2013 Asgard, Rocket and Thor plan to remove the Aether/Reality Stone from Jane Foster who was ‘infected’ with it during the events of Thor: The Dark World. This should be simple. But, as mentioned before Thor is a bit broken.

Since he killed Thanos and wasn’t able to save the world, he spiraled into a world of drinking, being lazy, over eating, and feeling unworthy to hold the title of ‘king of Asgard’ let alone the ‘God of Thunder.’ He’s out of shape, disconnected from reality, and emotional.

It doesn’t help that the moment they travel to is just before his mother is killed. Frigga seeks Thor out and has a heart to heart conversation with her son. She knows that he is broken and hurting, but reminds him that maybe he just needs to be who he is and not what he’s supposed to be. That’s a lot of pressure and its been weighing on Thor since the events after Infinity War.

As Rocket is being chased by the royal guards of Asgard, Thor discovers that even in his broken state, he’s still very much worthy as his hammer Mjolnir (which he hasn’t been able to use for over five years since Hela destroyed it) comes to him. He takes the Hammer and they both travel back to their present.

In 2014, Nebula, Warmachine, Black Widow, and Hawkeye arrive to get the Power and Soul Stones. They stop on Morag, while Hawkeye and Black Widow take Quill’s ship (the Milano) to Vormir.

On Vormir, Black Widow and Hawkeye confront something that they didn’t expect, and no one prepared them for. They too are met by the keeper of the Soul Stone – the same keeper that met Thanos. He tells them the same rules. In order to obtain the stone, you must give up something precious: A soul for a soul.

Hawkeye and Black Widow, best of friends who care deeply for one another, fight with each other in who will sacrifice themselves so the other can get the stone. After a bit of back and forth, Black Widow ‘wins.’ She willfully drops from the cliff, sacrificing her life so that Hawkeye can take the Soul Stone back to the present.

Trouble arises in 2014 because the 2014 Nebula and the 2019 Nebula share a neural network. Thanos and his closest followers are able to discover the Avenger’s plan to reverse what he will successfully accomplish years in the future. He of course, cannot have that. His plan must succeed and be permanent.

They capture, use, and take advantage of 2019 Nebula and switch 2014 Nebula in her place.

All the Avengers return to the present day with the stones they were assigned to claim. They go to Tony’s lab and decide which one of them will put on their version of the gauntlet to ‘snap’ the lost back to life.

They decide to give it to Banner since he’s the only one thought to be strong enough to withstand the combined power of all six Infinity Stones. Anyone else wouldn’t be able to survive. Stark insists that Banner only bring back the fallen, not to revert time back to that moment five years ago.

Banner snaps his fingers and the sounds of birds can be heard, not to mention Hawkeye’s cell phone starts to ring as he’s receiving a call from his wife. Everything seems to be good. Finally.

Except it isn’t.

2014 Nebula hijacks the time machine and uses it to not only bring Thanos to the present, but his entire ship, army, the Children of Thanos, and the Chitauri army. Thanos has come to put a stop to these meddling humans and their friends.

He also has a different plan, since he’s discovered that his original plan didn’t lead to life and thriving in the world. In his mind, if it had, no one would’ve wanted the fallen to return.

His new plan is even more sinister. He’ll use the power of the stones to wipeout all life in the universe and scrub the memory of the Avengers from all of history. Only after that is done will he then use the power of the stones to recreate the universe in his design.

This isn’t the ‘altruistic’ and reluctant villain of Infinity War. This is the Mad Titan Thanos that the galaxy has been in fear of.

A huge battle ensues. Surprises await at almost every turn. Especially when just as it appears that Thor is about to be killed by Thanos, he’s hit with Mjolnir; wielded by Captain America. He is worthy to hold the hammer and is bestowed the powers of the God of Thunder as well.

But, even that new advantage still isn’t enough to stop Thanos and his army. Thanos knows that he has numbers on his side. He’ll just beat them into submission by overrunning them.

Captain America isn’t backing down. As he stands to continue the fight. Countless mystic portals created by the returned Doctor Strange begin to appear all across the battlefield. Every fallen hero is back. Not only them, but the combined forces of the Wakandan, Asgardian, and Ravager armies and space fleets are with them.

Now, it’s a fair fight. Thanos no longer has a numbers advantage.

The epic battle of all battles begins as Captain America shouts out, “Avengers assemble!”

As the battle goes back and forth and more heroes enter the fight (namely Captain Marvel who destroys Thanos’ ship that is bombarding the battlefield and taking out not only the Avengers’ forces, but also his own) individual superheroes take possession of the infinity stones (still in the gauntlet that Stark made) to get it as far away from Thanos as possible.

However, he eventually takes possession of the gauntlet and places it upon his hand as Iron Man flies into him.

Thanos snaps his fingers…and nothing happens. The Stones aren’t on the gauntlet, Stark has taken them and placed them on his hand. He snaps his own fingers and Thanos’ entire army turns to dust. Thanos slumps and is resigned to his fate as he too turns to dust.

They finally won. But, it wasn’t without loss.

Those who were killed before Thanos’ snap are still gone; Loki and Vision. Those who were sacrificed to obtain the Soul Stone, Gamora and Black Widow, are gone. The one who snapped his fingers last, Tony Stark – Iron Man himself – is dead. He couldn’t survive the combined power of the Infinity Stones.

A funeral is given for Tony and is attended by all those who had ever fought at his side. His friend, body guard, and driver – Happy – promises to take care of Stark’s daughter, Morgan, and take her out for cheeseburgers.

Finally, the time for the Stones to be returned to their rightful times comes. Captain America decides to be the one not only to return the stones, but to also return Mjolnir to it’s proper timeline as well. Cap makes the time jump, but he doesn’t jump back.

Hulk, Bucky, and Falcon are distraught as they believe something is wrong. Yet, they notice on a bench overlooking the lake is an older man. Falcon walks up to him, and notices that it is Steve Rogers. Much older now.

After returning the stones, Cap decided to ‘have that dance’ with Peggy Carter after all. They got married and lived the life that he missed. Steve then gives Falcon his shield. Passing the mantle of Captain America to him.

Thus ends this chapter of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

 

When I was in my first call, I remember talking with the adults during Bible study one Sunday morning about the ‘life of faith.’ One person was adamant that the life of faith was easy. Just love people, go to church, and be good. God will take care of the rest.

A few others and I were kind of taken aback by that sentiment. So, I gently pushed her. Just love people – what about that person who cuts you off in traffic? Is it easy to love them? How do we love the person who hurts us? Who hurts others? Who we disagree with? Who gives us the ‘creeps’?

I wasn’t trying to be mean, but this life of faith is not always easy. It isn’t always about rainbows and sunshine. We don’t have mountain top experiences every day – and our goal isn’t always to have those mountaintop experiences.

Life is hard. The life of faith doesn’t make it easier, but it does make it possible to live into that hope that God does love, care, and is present with us always.

Endgame starts out with heartbreak and depression. The world is quiet, and tears are shed at almost every turn. People are broken. The every day folks like the young boy on the bike who meets Scott Lang after he gets out of the Quantum Realm and even the heroes themselves. Thor is broken and suffering and he’s ‘let himself go’ as it were. Black Widow is on the verge of tears as she speaks to Captain America in the beginning of this film. Hawkeye breaks really bad as he mourns and grieves the loss of his entire family.

Five years of tears, heartbreak, and loss. Five years of lost relationships, lost love, lost joy, and more.

As I watched those scenes play out, the eerie quiet, the constant tears, the dreary color of the world, I couldn’t help, but think of that time between Jesus’ death and resurrection. When Jesus breathes his last and is placed into the tomb.

His friends, his family, his followers have lost all hope. It isn’t there anymore. They were supposed to win with Jesus at their side. He is the Son of God. He’s raised people from the dead, healed countless folks, spoke with authority and presence in the temples, on the mountains, he calmed the storm – both the storm on the lake, and the storm that his closest friends felt in their hearts.

How; how could this one lose? And lose so humiliatingly?

The beginning of this film focuses on that lost hope. It shows in ways how some are best ‘coping’ with it, but no one is really ‘complete.’ Not even the Starks. There is so much loss.

Yet, one person speaks of a truth, a hope, a possible way to bring everyone back.

That small hope, that infinitesimal hope is all they need. All they need to hope again. To believe again. To trust; again.

That hope was proclaimed by the women at the tomb in what they saw (and didn’t see). There were told of the great victory of Christ – he isn’t dead anymore. He’s back. He’s been raised. Share and proclaim this news.

Yet, people didn’t believe them. Not even his closest friends and followers. Why? Because dead men don’t get up. Yet, that light burned in the darkness, finally they listened to the story, the passionate preaching of the women, they believed.

This film is all about hope – no matter how small – being what drives us to move forward, to believe, to trust, to have faith.

That slim hope of ‘could it be possible’ is what they need to give meaning and trust back into their lives.

Not only is that hope won, but all those who have been brought back are needed to fight back Thanos’ army. Their combined strength, their ability to assemble together is exactly what is needed to combat this evil that wishes to now destroy all life in the galaxy.

I don’t know how many people caught it, but when all those portals opened up, there is a quick shot of Thanos’ face, his surprise, his anger, his frustration, and dare I say his fear that things are going to go his way.

That quick look is what I feel “death” sees in Jesus. Where we aren’t gathered to ‘fight,’ but we are gathered to love. That this hope in Jesus, this love lived out together, does indeed strike fear into the heart of sin and death.

This light that shines and drives out darkness – for good.

This love that perseveres through struggle and hardship. This love that reconciles and mends what is broken. This love that makes us whole. This love that reminds that we are enough.

That hope and love fills us as people of faith and sends us out into the world proclaiming this good news to all.

That hope and love brought Tony and Cap back together, helped Banner wrestle with his ‘literal’ monster inside him, walked with Thor and brought him back from the edge.

It’s also the same hope and love that caused Hawkeye and Black Widow to fight over who would be the one to sacrifice themselves for the future of the universe.

Endgame helps us see that hope, love, and trust are needed in a broken world. Christ reminds us that hope, love, and trust do exist in this broken world. We have it already. It doesn’t make life easier, but boy does it allow us to live into this life that has been gifted to us.

 

I’ve only seen Endgame once, so there may be other things that I’ve missed. I hope to talk with our Nerd Word group about the film this month. Because, yeah – there’s a lot to talk about.

Thanks for reading through this with me on this journey of fun and faith.

Grace and peace to each of you – true believers! Amen.


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