The hero’s journey has been on my mind recently. It’s a storytelling style we’re drawn to. We live vicariously through the adventure.
It’s typically in three moves.
The Departure. Think of Gandalf calling Sam or Frodo. Clark Kent leaves Smallville to find out who he is. Steve Rogers getting the Super-Soldier Serum.
The Initiation. Bruce Wayne training to be Batman. Tony Stark building his armor. Thor trying to become worthy again.
The Return. The hero comes back, but they’re different now. Batman Begins is an excellent example of that. The scene in Avengers: Endgame where Captain America returns to Peggy Carter.
Every challenge could be a little journey.
I was thinking that following Jesus is a hero’s journey.
There is the call to adventure. Jesus literally says, “Follow me.”
Next, there’s sometimes the Refusal of the Call. Jesus had to call Peter, James, and John twice. They’d met him before.
We second-guess and wonder if we should give the “God-thing” a try.
There comes Supernatural Aid—a mentor figure. For the Christian, it’s the Holy Spirit. Sometimes a more experienced Christian.
You take the step, embarking on the quest, turning from that life to a new life.
Obstacles and temptations arise. The forces of darkness oppose you.
So ends the First Act.
The curtain opens again, and you’re facing trials. Losing some, yet winning others. A training montage with your soundtrack plays.
It’s “Eye of the Tiger”, isn’t it?
That’s just daily living. As you go through the journey, you gather friends and allies. Something easy to do if you’re connected to a church.
Throughout, you’re tempted to go back or turn away. Finally, you confront the reason for your journey. It could be a person, a particular sin, or an event.
Then boom! A light switch clicks on as you understand your purpose or skill.
Better armed, you continue like Thor getting Stormbreaker and landing in Wakanda.
The goal is achieved.
I would switch it here with what’s called The Master of Two Worlds.
There, the hero balances who he was before and after the journey.
It often means balancing the material world with the spiritual and the experience they’ve gained.
I’m constantly trying to find the balance, swinging one way or the other.
Life is the cycling of the Initiation phase. The ultimate goal is to be transformed to be more like Jesus.
What’s your hero’s journey look like?