When Spider-Man asks you to write a blog, you write a blog.
This is that. Let me explain.
A few weeks ago, we got an email asking if we might want to be involved in the promotion of The Amazing Spider-Man 2. We said we would need to see the movie. They said we could see part of it. We figured they would send a link to a video. Instead, they rented out a theater and sent two security guards.
That led to this.
The bad guy in the new Spider-Man movie is a character called Max, played by Jamie Foxx. We are first introduced to Max when Spider-Man saves him from getting hit by a car. Max recognizes Spider-Man, and it means the world to Max when Spider-Man says his name and tells him that he matters. Max has seen himself a nobody, but Spider-Man tells him he’s a somebody.
Though we are yet to see the whole movie, we did see more of Max. The thing that really stood out to me was Max’s desire to be known. Even as he begins to become the villain, you can see that at his core, Max simply wants to matter, he wants to be significant. In a pivotal standoff with the police in Times Square, Max sees himself on the dozens of TV screens and he can’t look away. Suddenly, he matters. Suddenly, he is a somebody.
i wonder if you can relate to Max. i wonder if we all can. i believe we all desire to be known and also to be loved. i believe we all want to feel significant, to feel that we matter, to feel that we are special. i believe this stuff is central to us. It’s at the root of who we are and what we need. And because this life is hard, because things so often don’t go the way we wish or dream, we encounter pain. And when it comes to problems of pain - our struggles, fears, failures and questions, issues such as depression and addiction - how we respond is hugely important. Over and over in our lives, with actions more than words, we get to answer the question, "What do I do with my pain?"
There are a thousand ways to cope, a thousand places to put our pain. There are healthy ways to cope - leaning on friends, having honest conversations, going to counseling or treatment, doing our best to believe better things, even something as simple as getting exercise. And there are unhealthy ways as well. For many of us, we begin to isolate so that no one can know us or love us or meet us in our questions. Instead of letting others help us fight to focus on the possibility of healing and change, we live alone staring at whatever’s broken or missing. Drugs and alcohol are a common way that people attempt to escape a reality they wish was different. It works at first, but then spins out of control, leading to addiction. We become chained to the thing we thought might make us free.
TWLOHA exists to say that you can start again, that rescue and recovery are possible and worth fighting for. You deserve friends. You deserve love. You deserve whatever help you need. But we know that so much of this hinges on hope. If recovery is the fire that warms away our long cold pain, hope is the spark that starts the fire. Hope gives us permission to believe a fire could come.
So here is something meant to be a spark:
Your name is significant.
Nobody can replace you.
No one else can play your part.
You are living a story, rich with hopes and dreams and memories and we know there’s pain as well. Your story is priceless and sacred and unique. Your story is worth fighting for. Your story deserves other characters, other people invested in reminding you what’s true, reminding you you’re worth fighting for.
And what a cool thing that we get to be a character in the stories around us. We get to tell people that they matter, that they are not alone in their questions and their pain. We get to help people fight for their dreams.
You see, we are different but we’re also the same. We want love. We want our lives to count. We want to matter.
You’re not a nobody.
You’re a somebody.
You’re living a story and you’re surrounded by stories.
And everybody is somebody.
Peace to You.
PS: You are invited to join the conversation on Twitter. Tell us what #EverybodyIsSomebody means to you.
The Amazing Spider-Man 2 will be in theaters across American starting next Friday, May 2.