So I will be straight… this post is going to be a soap box. And quite frankly, if you disagree, keep it to yourself.
And I want to be clear about the audience for this post. It is for anyone who would call yourself a follower of Jesus.
As we have seen in the past few months, the Bible seems to have taken center stage in our culture. The mini-series followed up by the movie Son of God and now we have the movie Noah that is in theaters.
And why not? There are some amazing stories in the Scripture. Whether you believe in God and the inspiration of the Scriptures or not, there are some amazing stories of hope in hopelessness and redemption and freedom for the oppressed. Why wouldn't Hollywood want to tell these stories? They are truly amazing!
And one would think that while this new interest in the Bible is taking root, that Christians would take the amazing opportunity to invite people into real relationships where they can discuss the implications of these stories with others in a GENUINE, RELATIONAL, COMPASSIONATE, UNDERSTANDING environment.
I find that works much better than just simply putting someone on blast over Facebook and validating my opinion because I copied and pasted a blog post that someone else wrote.
Some simple questions, then I will move on…
- When was the last time any movie said - Exactly like the event happened?
- When was the last time you got upset because Chariots of Fire didn't get the exact details of the events correct? Or Texas Chainsaw Massacre? Or the Passion of the Christ? Or Alive? Or ANY OTHER MOVIE EVER SAID TO BE BASED ON A TRUE STORY?
- When was the last time Christians agreed on anything?
And that last question is really to my point. The truth is, if they had made the movies verbatim to the story (which would have been a terribly boring way to make a movie) Christians would have picked it apart a thousand ways. We always do.
Which leads me to an aside. I am so tired of Christians talking about how the world is always out to get them. If I was with people who are as grumpy and disagreeable as Church goers, I would want them gone too. But that is another post.
How about this: what if we took the chance that has been given to us and rather than nit pick, we started entering into real conversations with others about what it means to believe this stuff and not just try to make sure everyone knows that I disagree with what happened.
Your disagreement never saved anyone. Jesus' love does. So maybe the better thing to put on display is the love of Christ, not everything that you agree or disagree with. How do we lovingly invite people into a real conversation about what the Bible says and how we can line up with God's agenda to bring heaven crashing into earth. I am not saying that this is easy, but no one seems to be having this conversation at all.
And that is the bigger issue isn't it? As a Christian, you are not doing the world or your God any favors by making sure that world knows everything you are against. Maybe the better conversation is about focusing on what you are for. And what it means to love God with all your heart and soul and strength. And maybe the better action isn't to pick everything apart because you think it should have been done differently.
There are a whole segment of passionate, Jesus loving people who don't even believe that Noah actually happened but that it was a story told to make a bigger point about God and His agenda for the world. But guess what, if you choose to just blast everything you disagree with, you will never be able to hear that maybe they aren't as "dumb" and closed minded as you might think. And that perhaps the closed minded one doesn't stare back at you in the street, but in the mirror.
Whole new worlds of God's grace and depth of Scripture open up to us when we care enough to listen and attend to issues with grace and not disagreement.
And a Christian had to say it. Because if a non-believer said it, you would just dismiss it as their foolish heart being darkened.
So, for the record: The Noah movie does in fact take some liberties that are not written in the story. And yes, that is an interesting point to ponder. And I would love to have that conversation over a cup of coffee. But don't condemn anyone over a Facebook post or a blog post because it didn't play out the way you would have done it.
Praise God that the conversation is happening.
And before you dismiss my post as one that is "doing the very thing that I am spouting against," I know exactly what I am doing. How does it make you feel? Do you want to talk gently and gracefully with me? Or do you want to fight?
*Consider how we can spur one another on towards love and good deeds." * - Hebrews 10:25
Does your disagreeable post spur anyone on to love and good deeds? Or did you just widen the chasm between the amazing love of Jesus and a world that desperately needs to know that love?
The right thing done the wrong way becomes the wrong thing.