"...Perfect love casts out fear..."
~ I John 4:18 ~
Have you ever sat in the movie theater and wanted to cheer for the character that captivates your heart? I have. I experienced this last night as my son and I watched Soul Surfer.
There was a scene in the movie in which the main character, Bethany, is in the midst of many teenagers and their youth group meeting, sitting and listening to their youth pastor show a couple of close up photography shots that take up the whole television screen. She asked the young people to guess what the pictures were. The answers from the teenagers were interjected throughout the scene as they gave their assumptions. When the still photographs were zoomed out, one frame ended up being a fly and the other frame ended up being a walnut in a shell; their assumptions were not even close to what was revealed. The youth pastor explained that what their assumptions were was likened to life. In life we sometimes see things so up close that it thwarts the real picture. Because of this, the youth pastor reiterated that there are many times when we must see life from a different perspective.
When Bethany's arm was suddenly and violently ripped from her body as she was attacked by a massive shark, her life became different in many ways. The one thing that remained was her tenacity to see life with beautiful perspective. Her perspective became more focused. Her life before and even after the shark attack was consumed with the obsession of surfing. However, when she went on her first mission trip, her perspective changed from the sport of surfing to the purpose for each of our lives to be consumed with true obsession, which is being consumed by the Love of God to be lavishly placed upon others.
In another scene of the movie, there were a few surfboards on the tsunami, ravaged beach in Thailand as they went on a mission trip. In one of the scenes, Bethany tucked one of the surfboards under her arm, and used the surfboard as a tool that God utilized to reveal new perspective as she woo'ed a little boy who was found a few days prior floating to shore after the tsunami had hit. He wouldn't speak, smile or interact with anyone. He was filled with fear in general, but was also fearful of entering the waters. but when she coaxed him into the water, he surprisingly followed Bethany and she was able to see deliverance of his fear of the water; and ended up enjoying every moment of hanging out on the surfboard with her. The fear over that little boy was washed away by the beautiful waters of God's love that Bethany was able to reveal over him.
I was strikingly overhwelmed with inspiration by Bethany's faith in God. As I watched a glimpse of her shaken circumstances squeezing her character, what came out revealed a young woman filled with optimism that God's plan was to take the seemingly impossible and turn it into possibilities she or anyone else around her could never have ever imagined or dreamt.
This unimagniative reminder of when we see issues of our life not panning out the way we planned; we must remember that our life is not over. When life squeezes us; we will truly see what is on the inside of us.
This leads me to the provoking questions of When the circumstances of life squeeze me, do I reveal my trust in God? Do I have a lot to work through? O yes indeed...yet, Bethany inspired me to be my biggest cheerleader over myself towards God and His plans over me to be a ministering laborer towards others.