Jesus Christ: Super Hero: Faster than a prayer on wings, more powerful than dynamite, able to leap over any problem. Introduce Jesus as the real hero kids can look up to. But first, understand what qualities kids look for in a hero…
Childhood heroes — we all had them — are a timeless element of childhood that allows kids to look up to someone greater than themselves. Kids aspire to be like their heroes. Today’s kids have a range of heroes, some with questionable reputations, such as Britney Spears or Harry Potter. Others are undoubtedly the best in their field — Tiger Woods or Venus and Serena Williams. And since the attacks of September 11, community figures such as firefighters and police officers have once again gained hero status.
So where does Jesus Christ fit in? “I wanna be like Jesus” — isn’t that what we want our kids to strive for?
Kids need to know that Jesus isn’t someone who lived more than 2,000 years ago; he also lives today. Jesus is the ultimate hero. Let’s take a look at the magnetic characteristics that draw kids to heroes and how those same characteristics can be found in Jesus Christ.
The Professional Hero
The professional athlete and the successful business tycoon portray the characteristics of the hero who’s an expert in a field. Kids are drawn to this hero not only for the expertise but also for the power and wealth that often accompanies this hero.
Today’s kids desire to be successful, and they don’t question that this quality is achievable for them as they grow older. Kids dream of one day being a professional athlete, the next Bill Gates, or a Pulitzer Prize-winning author. Having a hero who’s a professional gives kids hope for the future and a goal to achieve. The professional hero is where legends are born.
Jesus the Professional — Born a carpenter’s son, Jesus learned his father’s trade and, more than likely, he was good at it. His expertise in the art of carpentry isn’t what makes him memorable; it’s his unique knowledge of intimate details related to God.
And that’s because Jesus is God. Jesus demonstrated that he was God by performing miracles, resisting great temptations, and teaching life-changing lessons despite his age or lack of education. His business practices are legendary, using ordinary people to do extraordinary things. Because of who he is, he has the ultimate power.
The Problem-Solving Hero
Abraham Lincoln, James Bond, and Mary Poppins all have an answer when there doesn’t seem to be one. Whether it’s solving a political issue that could change the future or providing a remedy to make the medicine go down, kids like a person who seems to have all the answers.
Kids are curious by nature and enjoy the challenge of solving a problem. Characters such as James Bond display quick thinking in a tight situation. Abraham Lincoln was able to think past the country’s problems to ensure a solution for future generations. Heroes who are problem-solvers inspire kids to create a better future. Problem-solvers challenge kids to be the person who finds a cure for cancer or discovers a new way to teach kids with autism.
Jesus the Problem-Solver — When the wedding party ran out of beverages, Jesus found a way to provide more. When faced with a hungry crowd and few available resources, Jesus came through with food to satisfy people’s hunger. And when he had a boat-full of friends who were fearful that they’d die in a storm, Jesus assured them they’d be safe.
Jesus faced many problems, and he never shied away in fear or doubt. His problem-solving skills still apply today, and his answers can beat the toughest of situations. Jesus always knows the way home.