Today I am pleased to introduce you to a friend and fellow MN Nicey, John W. Otte. John leads a double life. By day, he’s a Lutheran minister. He graduated from Concordia University in St. Paul, Minnesota, with a theatre major and then from Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri. By night, he writes weird stories. He lives in South St. Paul, Minnesota, with his wife and two sons. Visit him on-line at www.johnwotte.com. His Debut Novel, Failstate is featured below.
What kid hasn’t dreamed of being a superhero?
I can remember, when I was younger, deciding that when I grew up, I would be a vigilante. Every week, my home church would have family nights on Wednesdays. People would get together for a potluck and then the kids would have educational programs. Between the meal and classes, though, we usually wound up in the gym, running off our extra energy.
Well, on one Wednesday night, I decided the time had come to start training for my life as a masked vigilante. I pulled some mats off the gym wall and threw myself down on them repeatedly.
I think I was trying to teach myself a safe way to fall from great heights. A superhero has to know how to do that, right?
When I was in college, a group of my friends would get together every day to watch “Batman: The Animated Series.” Nowadays, if I’m going to a summer blockbuster, you’d better believe the star will be someone in a costume knocking heads together.
You’d better believe that I’ll be one of the first to see “The Avengers” when it comes out in May. I suppose in some ways I haven’t grown up. I still want to be a hero.
Of course, one of the major obstacles is the fact that I don’t have any powers. At least, none worthy of a cape. No amount of exposure to radioactive chemicals will change that. I can’t “retcon” my way into strange and incredible powers that defy human explanation. And yet, I know that I’ve been blessed with special gifts nonetheless.
That’s what St. Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 12. He reminds us that the Holy Spirit has given each of us special and unique gifts and abilities for use in His service. That’s not something that He does for a select few, those worthy of donning a cape and cowl.
Instead, it’s something that He does for each and every one of us. And then He gathers us together into a supergroup of His own, one larger and more powerful than the Justice League or the Avengers or anything you’d find in a comic book or blockbuster movie.
Because of God, all His children have special gifts. In His eyes, we’re all heroes, called into the service of something far greater than ourselves.
I don’t know about you, but I think that’s pretty cool. But it’s still fun to play pretend, right? So let me ask you:
If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?