Childhood... I splashed into puddles, had the strength of Superman, the wealth of Batman, fought off the "baddies", and traversed through snake filled pastures with reckless abandon. I was full of life, I had no fear, and I was ready for the next adventure. I'm sure many had the same experience. Then for some reason I "grew up". 

     The moment I realized, "Wait, you mean I don't have the strength of Superman, the wealth of Batman, and I'm not really saving the world?" I was devastated. My little 6-8 year old self didn't know how to handle that information.

     What if God was setting us up in those years, giving us a glimpse of how He wants us to live life? In many ways, I think He is. The tragedy is that the world knows this maybe even more than we realize and tries everything in its power to derail the superhero train at 8-12 years old so that we never see who we really are.

     It is around the ages of 8-12 years old when we start having more of a consciousness of the world around us and want more in life. Jesus in the temple at 12 years old saw His destiny. Gregg  Johnson, our Founder, often likes to talk of Jesus' time in the temple, how Jesus probably saw the sacrifices being offered, and possibly even saw His future destiny. Jesus at 12 years of age, seeing the sacrifices being offered in the temple for the sins of the people, potentially saw the very Superhero and ultimate Savior He was to become by offering Himself up for the sins of the world.

     At J12 we believe the story of Jesus at 12 is a template for all of us to live and especially at around the age of 12. I believe it is at around that age when we are to see our destiny as blood bought sons and daughters of the living God and live like the superheroes we were saved to be. We are to live childlike; live in reckless abandon (trust and obedience) because of the Father's love for us and our love for the Father. What if "childlike" was another word for superhero? What if J12 was the emblem on our chest and a statement of who we fight in the name of? What if God is longing for us to be the superheroes He made us to be? What if?

Stephen Ibach
Creative Director