Where did Naruto learn discipline, passion, and honor when the people around him don’t seam to set the example? As Sakura said early on in season 1, Naruto had no parents to guide him growing up, so why is he so focused and determined even though he spent his childhood persecuted for who he is?
As a follower of Christ, I have my fair share of persecution. Not only did I receive harsh looks, threats, and a lot of screaming, I did not find a safe place among my fellow church members. Naruto, like myself were not accepted by our own people.
Still, Naruto represents the goodness that humans are capable of. Even when everything around us is negative, hopeless, and painful, we have the capacity of doing the right thing. Unlike Naruto, we are guided by the holy spirit who teaches us how to choose the right thing. It’s much easier to choose to do the wrong thing when we act in our humanness alone, as we see Naruto’s village rebuke and ignore him. Some of them know the secret of the nine tailed fox, but everyone else ignores him because it’s socially easier. No one wants to take responsibility for him.
Naruto and God’s followers have much in common, but we accomplish our goals differently. Naruto’s story is interesting because he uses his own humanness to gain respectability. We love to watch stories where the hero has too look with in himself to accomplish his goals, because it’s relatable and good entertainment. Christians know that we don’t need the same earthly approval Naruto craves, because the same thing is worth much more in heaven. We shouldn’t look in ourselves and channel our “Chakra”, because that’s what’ll win the battle against the real evil of this world. We need God’s spirit specifically to help us grow and become stronger and grounded in the truth. The same way we see Naruto learn to become a ninja, in ways we can apply his determination to our own lives and social battles.
As we fight this battle, we need to understand how vital it is to be a good example for others. You never know what will influence someone – an action, a simple word, or even a thought or idea can influence someone positively or negatively. We are Christ’s ambassadors. We represent the Kingdom of heaven, so don’t we want to encourage others to want to become citizens of the land we’ve inherited? This subject is very important to me, because there are many people in my own church that I feel don’t take their role in God’s kingdom very seriously. Like the townsfolk at the beginning of season 1, they decide to take the easy rout in disliking Naruto and judging him because it’s socially expectable and emotionally easy. Naruto learns nothing from them. They gave him a bad representation of his own clan, yet he fights for it because he knows it’s his duty. Even thought my church friends aren’t very nice to me, I still will fight the battle for them, because it’s my duty to them as their sister in Christ. I have a much different reason for protecting my spiritual siblings then Naruto- and my reason is our Abba Father.
Naruto goes around with the intention of pleasing them because he thinks that’s the only way to win their approval. This is the wrong attitude for Christ followers. When I go to church and I feel uncomfortable because of the actions of my fellow of my brethren, I do receive some disapproval – much of which I know is the spiritual battle. However, I know I don’t need to win their approval and I don’t need to be their best friends. I don’t even need to prove anything to the Lord. He’s already prepared a place for me by his side even though I have so many faults. This is the greatest peace a person can experience, and I wish Naruto could have enjoyed it as I have.
So even when life is difficult, especially when you have social or friend troubles, all you need to know is that you have been fully forgiven and excepted by the creator of the universe. But it’s also ok if you don’t feel that way right now. Ask the Lord to give you his “…peace that transcends all understanding….” (Philippians 4:7) and meditate on why you fight his battle. God will give you the answer.