Thought for the Day: Friday, April 3
As it is normal for us on a Friday chapel to have a guest speaker come in from one of the local churches, I’m delighted that Rob Beamish, the minister at Prince’s Drive Baptist Church and a very good friend of the school, has agreed to offer us a thought for the day of his own.
A week or so before the current lockdown I went with my son to the opening day of the new Geek Retreat Café in Llandudno, a place to drink milkshakes, play board games and catch up on all-things geek!
However, within days of this grand opening they like many other business had to find other ways to trade and engage with their community, so not a great time to start a new venture.
But in the midst of these challenging times for so many people it is probably fair to say that it has been a great time for the Disney+ streaming service to launch in the UK! Not only does Disney have a back-catalogue par excellence of family-friendly classics and heart-warming tales, but they also have new and exclusive content such as the Star Wars spin-off series ‘The Mandalorian.’
Now you may not be much of a Star Wars fan with an encyclopaedic knowledge of every scene and plot twist or get great enjoyment from spending your time dressing up like Chewbacca and other characters, but I am sure you have heard of this new series. Why? Well to put it in two words – ‘Baby Yoda’.
Whilst this key character was not seen on any of the pre-publicity it did not take long after the launch in North America for the news of Baby Yoda to find its way across the pond! There is of course nothing else like a cute protagonist to get people talking and to sell copious merchandise; you will be pleased to know that the cuddly toy version is available on pre-order, https:www.shopdisney.co.uk/ will be able to take your money!
If you can get over the fact that with this series being set between the original trilogy and the most recent one, this character is not Baby Yoda but simply one in a similar vein known as ‘The Child’, then this is still exciting news!
However, with only four episodes of the eight currently available we don’t yet fully know what role ‘The Child’ will play, and so far this character has not had much to say mostly because despite being fifty years old he cannot speak! So it is very much about the promise of what this character is and will be that is generating the excitement, rather than what they have done so far.
I have been trying to convince my children that the main character is really the Mandalorian of the title, the secretive bounty hunter, part of a mysterious guild taking money to hunt people down across the galaxy, but to no avail, it is all about the cute green creature floating around in the background!
I am not saying that the Mandalorian himself, or Mando as he is known in the series, is bothered one little bit by the fame of Baby Yoda (he is of course just a fictional character!), but it can be difficult to not be the centre of attention especially when you think you should be!
It is difficult because thinking that we are the centre of things is often a path to trouble. Trouble comes for King Herod who when Jesus was born took exception to the suggestion that the true King was now out there somewhere and it was not him!
If we fast forward to the events of Easter, which are now just around the corner for us, we see the same power dynamic being played out with the now local rulers taking exception to Jesus being hailed as the true King on what we call Palm Sunday.
Interestingly enough Jesus resists some of the titles being put his way, not because they were not true, but because his way was a different way, it was a way not of power and control but of sacrifice.
As we continue to get used to living in close proximity to others in our homes, without the usual outlets that we are used to, let us try and practice the way of Jesus – taking time to value those around us and to live sacrificially remembering that we are not the centre of all things and other people are important too!
Whether the Mandalorian has a problem with ego and status is not yet clear but we will see how his relationship with ‘The Child’ develops in the episodes to come…he may even remove his mask at some point!
Rob Beamish – Prince’s Drive Baptist Church