Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Nerd's Eye View: Episode III
Return of the Family
Everyone has a family. We are all born from a mother and father, often with other siblings as well. Families come in all varieties; while not all are what you would call the typical "nuclear" family, we all have one. Every family faces different challenges and different circumstances. But, no matter the situation, the true blessing of a family comes from the support and love they offer each other through the storms of life.
This is by divine design. This is why the family is a universal unit. It doesn't matter if you are from America or a tiny island in the South Pacific, from Earth or a small desert planet in the Outer Rim Territories.
There will always be families.
Growing up, Luke's family were his Aunt and Uncle, Owen and Beru. Although not his bioligical parents, they raised him, nurtured him, taught him, and provided for him.
Owen, a moisture farmer, was a little rough around the edges but had a good heart. He taught Luke the value of hard work while forging a meager existance on the baked terrain of Tatooine.
Beru, Owen's wife, shows a tender and compassionate heart as she implores Owen to let Luke go to school, rather than stay home at the farm as all his friends move on in life. She was a voice of reason and kindness, and no doubt taught Luke the value of showing love to others.
Luke never knew his birth mother or father growing up. The most Uncle Owen would say about him was that he was a pilot for spice freighters.
Then, one day, two droids appeared that would change Luke's life, and family, forever. Despite his training into Jedi, warping to all ends of the galaxy, mastering the force, saving a princess(/sister), blowing up a death star, hugging a wookie, etc... in the end what changes Luke's life the most are four simple words:
"I am your Father."
We all know the story of the Prodigal Son. A young, foolish son approaches his father, asking for all the money of his inheritance. The father kindly, although I imagine somewhat apprehensively, does so. The son, with all his newfound money, freedom, and power, "wasted his substance on riotous living." As his money depletes, he finds all his fairweather friends leave him. He is left to tend to pigs, starving even for "the husks that the swine did eat." Happily, that is not where the story ends. The son, humbled and weak, has a change of heart and returns to the father. The father, who had love and faith in his son all along, embraces him warmly and lovingly. His son is redeemed.
What we learn from this galaxy far, far away is the story of the Prodigal Father. Darth Vader, originally a bright young boy named Anakin Skywalker, is seduced to paths of darkness in the course of his life. When Luke learns of his father's identity, he knows, almost instictively, there is still good in his father's heart. Despite the continual bad choices (including, but not limited to, lightsaber battles) of Darth Vader, his son believes in him.
Later on, when Luke's life is about to end at the hands of the evil Emporer, Anakin's love shines through the black metal and polyester, and he, at the cost of his own life, saves the life of his only son.
His last words are,
"Tell your sister you were right."
Families are built on sacrifice, love, and faith. It doesn't matter who raises you, what color your skin is, or what galactic vector you reside in, the family has always been, and the family will always be. It is something that is sacred, beautiful, and must be revered and protected. We mustn't lose faith in our loved ones who have lost their way, but have faith in them as our Father in Heaven has faith in us. And remember,
we are all family.
May the Spirit be with you!