Significant Calling

While Anakin Skywalker is not the “poster child” for good decision making, he does give us plenty of mistakes from which we can learn. As has been discussed he was impatient and prideful, yet talented beyond measure, and blessed with an incredible gift with which he was to benefit many, many people. But he stumbled and as we know he fell from grace. The one pulling Anakin’s strings and encouraging his slow fade into the dark side of the force was Palpatine who was to become the evil Emperor. There are many things that were said to Anakin during the time that he was working on him but a few statements rise up above the rest. During the conversation in Episode III when Anakin discovers who Palpatine really is, he tells Anakin that he feels like he has always been looking for a life of significance outside of being an ordinary Jedi. Two things bother me about that statement, both of which of course are a part of Palpatine’s lies.

First, think of all the people that inhabit the Star Wars galaxy, billions and billions. How many of those people at one time are Jedi? Maybe a couple thousand at the most. Jedi Knights are not a common thing, it is a very rare talent to have, so that alone is significant just by itself.

Second, Anakin was not called to be just an ordinary Jedi, he was to be one of the most important Jedi ever. That seems awfully significant. But Palpatine played down this calling and his duty as a Jedi, wanting to deliver the promise of greater power and recognition else where, something that would bring respect and “show up” those who Anakin thought where out to devalue him.

The enemy often engages in this same kind of tactic, down playing a good work that you are called to do or the career that you are meant to have, especially if God is to receive all the glory from your actions. Proverbs 21:21 says, “He who pursues righteousness and love finds life, prosperity and honor.” The best way to receive the abundance of blessings that God has in store for our lives is to stay on track with His will, His perfect will. We may have to wait longer than we may think is necessary, but trusting in God’s timing is key.

A few days ago there was news of a shooting in California, the young man who was responsible for this crime was bitter and disgruntled with life. He felt that he was not getting enough recognition or attention, especially from girls, his plan was to prove to those around him just how much power he really had and what he was capable of; therefore hoping to gain…something. Much like Anakin he was impatient, much like Anakin he had lost faith in those around him and just like Anakin he lost everything. Sadly however, this young man died as his Darth Vader. God only knows what sort of Kingdom potential was within him, yet he was talked into tearing it all down in the pursuit of fruitless gains and he even more sadly, took some innocent people with him.

Anakin found himself in a similar position, he tore down everything that he was called to be and took a great deal of people down with him. He lost everything; his wife, his children, his friends, his hope, and his passion. Well he almost lost everything, his calling stayed with him. His calling that was so good and so significant, that it managed to stay alive within what little was left of Anakin Skywalker after he turned into Darth Vader. Anakin was reminded of who he was meant be and gained more in that one revelation than in all his years as Darth Vader. Luke had faith in his father’s goodness (the goodness that both him and Padame knew was still there), more importantly he had faith in the source from which that goodness came from and it brought Anakin back.

The calling that God has in store for your life whether big or small is significant, more than you may ever know. God will reveal His plans in His time, have faith and trust Him. There is nothing that can be gained from following the urgings of the enemy, don’t allow him to minimize God’s plans. Have faith the goodness that flows through you, for it comes from a source that never fails. 

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Selfish Ambition

Darth Vader is made up of many things; pride, impatience and the effects of bad company just to name a few. He is also full to the brim with anger and fear, and on top of that he was selfish. Anakin Skywalker was given a wonderful gift, one that was to benefit many people, to include himself and everyone that he loved. Yet his power was wasted-at least for a while-and was made to fuel selfish ambition for both himself and Palpatine. Well mainly Palpatine.

Anakin was made to believe that turning to the dark side was a selfless act, he was taking one for the team if you will. He even told Padame that he was doing to protect her and that it would make the galaxy a better place, full of peace, justice and security. However, it was really a selfish act because he was not really doing it to protect her, he was doing it so that he would not have deal with losing her. He was really protecting himself and, to gain the power he just had to have right then. And no one, other than Palpatine, gained anything from this move. Most of the Jedi where dead, Padame died from a broken heart, Obi Wan and Yoda went into hiding and Anakin, well he was imprisoned by his choices.

The Bible tells us in James 3:16, “For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.” What followed the fall of Anakin Skywalker took twenty years to undo and the time of the Empire was full of disorder and plenty of evil. Anakin’s selfishness caused him and those around him to pay a heavy price. His weaknesses were used against him, to make him into something he never should have been.

The enemy of our souls works in very much the same way. He knows what he can use to pick at you and he knows who or what it will effect. Our choices are important but our motivations are just as important if not more so. They can effect everyone around us but especially those closest to us, for we are the gateway to the people we care about. The enemy knows that, and he also knows the spiritual gifts that we possess and the function they are meant to serve in God’s kingdom. Don’t be weighed down by selfishness, pride or impatience. Trust in Gods timing. Surround yourself with good company. Be willing to be humble. Learn to trust in the voice of the spirit, allow him to direct your path. Don’t give in to selfish ambition, for your gifts could be made to serve the enemy for your soul.

In the end it was a selfless act, a truly selfless act, that brought Anakin back and fulfilled his calling that benefited everyone, to include himself. The Bible says in Philippians 2:3, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” God calls us to value others and their needs above our own. Don’t allow the goodness of your calling to be picked away by selfishness, for you’ll never know (until you get to heaven at least) just how many people it is meant to benefit.