Copyright 2017 Theresa Harvard Johnson
Wonder Woman reminds me of the beauty of childhood innocence if you grew up in the 70s. She wore a pretty cool headband, wielded a lasso of truth, wore a sword on her back, commanded an invisible jet and wore bracelets that could release untold power!
She was the superhero that offered escape from my darkened childhood. I would jump up and down as I waited for my 15-year-old brother to use the pliers to turn the broken knob on our black and white analog television set – just so I could catch the latest episodes from her groundbreaking show.
In between the fights at home and my mother’s severe, incapacitating schizophrenia, I became Wonder Woman’s greatest fan.
I would don my underoos (which were all the rage in 1977), grab my toilet paper roll bracelets (we would slit the sides so they would fit), put the rubber band from the collard greens around my head, grab my jump rope lasso… and head to the “circle” in the center of the housing projects where all the little kids would gather to play in the summer time.
You see, being Wonder Woman was good back then. It was as empowering as the Soul Train lines my teenage siblings and their friends would form under the evening street lights.
Wonder Woman could do ANYTHING in my six-year-old eyes! And in some of the darkest moments that I can remember... I would pretend to be her – underoos, toilet paper roll bracelets and a jump rope lasso of truth. (I am so serious.)
Yes, I know her story is rooted in Greek mythology or folklore. But as an adult, I’ve come to learn that we all emerged from somewhere ungodly. And the truth is, our beginnings in this earth do not disqualify the hope that held us prior to our knowledge of Christ. As I continue to mature and grow in wisdom, I am reminded that hope comes in all kinds of forms for the heart who desperately needs and seeks it.
Deep within me I believe God gave me Wonder Woman. There was someone, somewhere in my childhood whom I could identify with during devastating times – even if it was an imaginary person, place. I’ve come to learn that make believe (as Mister Roger’s taught it), was to live in that wonderful place of HOPE that children seem to “naturally exist inside of” … before they are corrupted.
I believe the Lord found a way to meet me “where I was”….and place a little bit of that super hero HOPE and determination in me.
I needed encouragement.
I needed it to rise from the ashes.
I needed it to IMAGINE a life outside of the one before me.
I needed HOPE and DETERMINATION to place an imprint on my soul.
Wonder Woman (who stands right beside Nancy Drew in my hall of fierceness) taught me that HOPE is in the eye of the beholder. And who ever wields it can overcome any obstacle they face. She taught me that inspiration TO LIVE can come from anywhere! She taught me that perhaps, there was a fighter within me.
To those who are pure, all things are pure in their understanding. In other words, we can see beyond the obvious… the plain, the simple.
So, I won’t apologize for seeing my childhood hero dominate the big screen. I won’t apologize for being reminded of those wonderful moments that pulled me from darkness into light. I won't apologize for my obsession with underoos... or for pretending that if I touched those bracelets... my whole world would change. (My mother had to buy me several sets of underoos because I wanted to wear them all the time.)
In my heart, Wonder Woman represents the rise of oppressed girls and women globally. You see, NO SUPER HEROINE has ever had a major movie debut of this proportion in our history. Wonder Woman wasn’t a side-kick, a damsel in distress or a stereotypical woman character of television and film in THIS MOVIE, but one of confidence, strength, determination, conviction, clear direction, strategy and vision that was so well written… that it supersedes mythology and gender. She wasn't marketing sex... just perseverance.
THAT MOVIE.... THE WONDER WOMAN MOVIE...speaks to the potential in all of us to be great, to do something great and to live a life bigger that what our finite minds present.
No. I DO NOT worship Wonder Woman!
Yet, I have admired her from my youth and still do.
I worship God, and I love the raw truth of humanity.
I have learned to see Him in every corner and crevice of my life, and to make decisions daily to continue to do so. I’m thankful that some of my best memories revolve around pretending to be Wonder Woman with my friends. Those were good times. WE SHOULD ALL CARE ABOUT GOOD TIMES BECAUSE THEY CAN BE SO FAR AND FEW IN BETWEEN THIS THING CALLED LIFE.
We shouldn’t apologize for the child-like joy that rises when we remember them. How dare religion AND ITS CRUEL TASK MASTERS snatch those moments away!
Salvation causes us to know the TRUE source of all hope: Christ.
But until some of them get there... maybe all they have is a vision of Wonder Woman like I did.
This movie, as I see, caused me to face a very personal truth: God has placed a measure of super hero in all of us. Through Christ, He has called us into our true, unshakeable identity. He has given us HOLY IMAGINATIONS! He has given us hinds feet, full armor and a sword. He has commanded that we take a stand and become immovable. He even declared that after the battle only three things would remain: Faith. HOPE. And love.
Wonder Woman reminds me, reminds us of that child-like joy and HOPE. You see, most children aren't looking for devils and demons.... just inspiration. And Wonder Woman continues to teach me how important it is to PUSH THROUGH, TO PRESS THROUGH... to cling to TRUE HOPE.
Often, it’s not about the messenger --- but the message itself. It's how we FILTER what we see and hear through our hearts. So glad I am still learning.
1 John 3:2 NIV, “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.”
Matthew 5:8 NIV, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.”
- Last Updated: 21 June 2017
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