On Tuesday Travis and I went to see The LEGO Batman Movie.
It was everything I expected - funny, quirky, and cleverly self-aware. But it had something else I didn't expect - a beautiful and warmly biblical message: You need community.
Batman was an isolationist, the independent vigilante, and he was driven by a fear of intimacy (even as I write this, I realize I'm drawing deep themes from a movie about LEGO bricks, but stick with me here). Batman pushed away people he cared about because he desperately feared losing them - and in the process, convinced himself that he didn't need anybody else.
But the story and characters in this movie humorously yet honestly dismantle Batman's pathological self-reliance and put forth a better ideal: community. Team. Family. We are better when we have people who love us, support us, critique us, humble us, encourage us, and teach us. And not just people who are exactly like us, people who are different. We learn from different genders and ages and races and social statuses.
God created us for community, hardwiring our hearts for interpersonal relationship. Of course, we are designed to find ultimate relational fulfillment in Him. But He blessed Adam with Eve and continues to bless us with people - people to learn from, people to love, people to share with, people to be with.
The most profound community He has given His people is the church. He's knit us together with a bond stronger than blood, everlastingly unbreakable, sealed with His Spirit. We are the body of Christ.
And we need this body. We can be tempted to separate ourselves from the body, acting as vigilante Christians, doing our own thing in our own way, blissfully independent. But that's not the way to grow and gain victory as a Christian. The path is community. The path is fellowship. The path is people.
And I'm grateful to the masked LEGO minifigure who reminded me of that.