This Year, More Bodhi, Less Jabba (A Star Wars Parable)

What are you wearing in 2018? The Apostle Paul tells us to “clothe ourselves with the presence of the Lord Jesus,” and to avoid making provisions for the flesh to gratify its sinful desires (Romans 13:14). What might it look like for us to be clothed in the presence of Jesus this year? Maybe a Star Wars analogy can help.

Identifying a self-serving character from Star Wars wasn’t hard. Jabba the Hutt immediately came to mind. This slug-like pile of nastiness is the poster child for indulging the flesh. His world is carefully ordered around his appetites. Even those closest to him, like the little weird looking dog-like-animal that sits nearby and laughs a lot, are not safe if they at all threaten his self-interests.

Coming up with a selfless character from Star Wars took a little more time. It couldn’t be Luke, he’s a bit too whiny. Definitely not Obi-Wan Kenobi. Like Luke, he’s a hermit who seems to prefer living in isolation. Han Solo? No way. Chewbacca? Hard to tell, he doesn’t really say much. So, who could be our galactic polar opposite from Jabba?

Might I suggest Bodhi Rook? He’s the pilate who defected from the Empire, delivered an important message about how the Rebellion could defeat the Death Star, and gave his life in service of this cause. He’s a great candidate because he (1) experienced true change, (2) cared for others, (3) risked and sacrificed everything in service.

So, as we seek to live out Paul’s admonition to clothe ourselves in the presence of Jesus and deny our flesh, may we experience true change, sincerely care for others, and give ourselves away in service. So, let’s stop living like Jabba the Hutt. Let’s quit ordering our world around our appetites. Let’s quit living like everyone is placed around us for our enjoyment and entertainment.

Because the Spirit lives in us as believers, we can experience true change that draws us out of ourselves, our sinful desires, our self directed ambitions, and propels us into a life that is lived for something bigger, and more grand, and more beautiful, than any self-centered kingdom we could ever construct for ourselves. That would be really be something wouldn’t it? That might be what it would like to clothe ourselves in the presence of Jesus.

May God give us grace to model his presence wherever we go.

And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh. (Romans 13:11-14)