We took the boys to see the movie, Letters to God , and it was so perfect. I wanted them to see how God can use even the worst things to change people for the good, and I wanted them to see that we’re not the only ones. You know how kids are. They don’t want to seem different… although they should. We should be different. The world thinks in the exact opposite way as God. But, my boys completely got the message of the movie at ages 8 and 11, and our whole family was in tears by the end. What a story of hope and courage and transformation. One little boy, Tyler, makes such a big difference in the lives of so many others. We can relate.
I hope you will all go see the movie. Rick said, “It just felt good to be in a movie theater and not have to think ‘Well, that was a good movie, but…’” We always wonder why they put in foul language or sexual content when the movie would have been so much better without it. Sometimes we think they do it on purpose just to smut it up knowing that it’s not adding to the movie. So, Letters to God was such a breath of fresh air. There was absolutely nothing offensive in it, which is rare for a movie theater movie, and the acting was really good we thought. But, the best thing about the movie was its message that there is purpose and hope and peace even in the absolute worst of circumstances.
What a contrast to another movie we watched put out by Hollywood about a girl dying of cancer. In that movie, no one seemed to know why. No one could make any sense of it at all. But, in Letters to God, they could. It reminds me of a time that I met a Muslim taxi cab driver in New York and struck up a religious conversation with him. He drove us to the airport, so we had a lot of time to talk. I won’t go into all the details, but that conversation really impacted me. It was clear that he didn’t have any answers. He didn’t know God, but what became even more clear to me after that cab ride was that I did. I do know God, and I do have the answers. We, who know Jesus as Lord, have the key. We hold the answers to life and death. Shouldn’t we be telling it more often? Shouldn’t we be shouting it from the rooftops? I mean, if there were a fire…
Well, I guess there is a fire. And that’s what Letters to God is all about, rescuing people from not just a fire but THE fire and providing answers to the questions we really want to know, like the biggest one of all, “Why?” When bad things happen, don’t we all just want to know why? Like that would make us feel better just by giving it a reason. Well, purpose does make us feel better. Giving a reason for suffering makes all the difference in the world.
The contrast between the two movies, My Sister’s Keeper and Letters to God, is just like that. One asks the question, “Why?” And the other one answers it. We, as Christians, need to see that the world is asking, “Why?” And, we need to tell them. Jesus holds the keys to life and death, and we hold Jesus.
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.” (2 Corinthians 5:17-21)
God has entrusted US with His message of reconciliation, God reconciling the world to Himself. There are reasons. There’s a reason why Christ had to suffer and die, and there’s a reason why we suffer and die too. Isn’t this worthy of discussion? Isn’t this a worthy message to spread? What are we so afraid of?
“Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one. I died, and behold I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and Hades.” (Revelation 1:17-18)
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified.” (Deuteronomy 31:6)
Stand firm like the Apostle Paul who wrote to the church at Corinth, “But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the knowledge of him everywhere.”
One man spread the gospel to almost the entire known world in his generation.
What are we doing to spread the gospel in our generation? Most of us aren’t doing a dang thing. We’re living our lives for ourselves and not for God.
I know. I was one of those people, too. I had everything going for me. Life was good.
Well, life’s not so good anymore. God had to make me a little less comfortable in this world in order to light a fire under my lazy…
Well, I’m not so comfortable anymore. Everything’s not perfect, but the fire has been lit. I stand here and say, “Here I am, God. Send me.”
The big question is… ARE YOU WITH ME?