Every May 4th for the past several years I have received from someone(s) the reminder “May the 4th be with you!” Maybe it will take you a minute (or more) to connect with the significance of this reminder. But for any movie buff out there who got caught up in the blockbuster movie “Star Wars” in the 70’s it might bring a smile to your face.
Star Wars movies became a huge family tradition in my family. My children, growing up in the 70’s saw each of the original three sequels multiple times. Their children, my grandchildren, growing up in the 90’s and beyond were just as captured by the even greater action-packed Star Wars “prequels” that dominated the movie scene about twenty years later. The gift of “Star Wars” for now three generations of my family is that it has stimulated conversations that generations need to share as we all grow together and try to live in what may not be a galactic universe but challenging times on simply one planet in a vast sea that seems to have no boundaries.
Star Wars has been considered the most profound contemporary “myth” of our times. It has not only mythical dimensions but profoundly theological ones too. Heroes and heroines struggling against forces of evil, seek the Light. Will the force of good, the light, be overcome by the dark forces that want to extinguish the light? “May the force be with you!” is the classic benediction that is given to the ones that go forth to meet the enemies of the light.
I found myself comforted this week by the reminder, after a long year in which we have combatted an unseen enemy that took us all on in the pandemic, of a force, an energy that wants us to continue to live, to survive and even thrive, despite the enemy. We fought the darkness with masks and a race for, not yet a cure, but an antidote that would protect us. We fought it with social distancing, sheltering in place, and of all things, simply masks. These were acts of love for the good of each other. Love, the force field that brought us through. And will take us beyond the darkness and ever towards the light.
May the Force be always with us . . . . .