Studying the book of Mark in my adult Sunday school class recently got me thinking about a question I have always liked to ponder: at what point did Mary approach her son and tell him the big news?
And that question led me to my favorite (and I would argue most tragic) superhero: Superman. Indulge me for a moment.
The conversation between Mary and a young Jesus must have paralleled in fascinating ways the conversation Jonathan and Martha Kent must have had with their son Clark.
Both Jesus and Clark, who must have had inklings that something was going on prior, set on about the task of puberty. Then, at some point in early adulthood, they came to a crossroads.
Jesus decided to enter the river Jordan, and was visited by his true father, and his true name was revealed. In response, he sought solitude in the desert.
Clark retreated to the Ice and his own fortress of solitude where he, too, met his true father, and his true name was revealed.
Both returned to society transformed. Both carried the weight of saving mankind. One wore a robe, the other a cape.
One key difference that fascinates me is that Kal-El (The Superman) uses his power and goes about trying to save everyone who is in danger. An impossible and lonely task that treats only the symptoms of the humankind’s illness.
Jesus Christ (The Messiah), on the other hand, relinquishes his power and gives it over to all. And regardless of one’s belief, his teachings can provide all humankind with the possible and collaborative task of treating the cause of the illness and, thus, transforming the world.
I’m Michael Perry and that’s my perspective.