Sunday, July 1, 2007

I'm afraid the well meaning movie critic missed it

I ran out and caught a showing of Evan Almighty. Have you heard about this film yet? God tells a modern-day family man to build an arc, just like Noah, and he does.

Collegues laugh at him, birds poop on him, and his wife thinks he's nuts and takes the kids to her parents house. It's the typical stuff you imagine would happen to someone if God told them to buy up lots of land to build a huge boat on, started dropping off lumber at their home, and if He didn't ever allow them to shave.

And yes, this movie is entertaining.

However, a reviewer for something called "Moviefone" said on CNN that "God himself couldn't save Evan Almighty." I heard this remark before going to go see the movie. I went with very low expectations as a result, but I was determined to go, because I have a personal policy to thank Hollywood for this kind of filmaking by buying a ticket.

You know what? I enjoyed myself, and the movie inadvertently teaches real spiritual lessons about obedience, faith, and family. Truthfully, there weren't a whole lot of laugh-out-loud moments, but it was a good time. And patrons in the theater I was at applauded at the conclusion of the film, so I wasn't alone in my assessment. I'm not sure our reviewer saw the same film I did.

One aspect of the movie that really struck a chord with me is how the filmakers accurately captured what a real faithwalk feels like at times.

We know Evan's really heard from God. Morgan Freeman (God) appears to Evan and gives him instructions, so we have the benefit of knowing he's not crazy. But Evan's circumstances scream, "You're nuts!" Anyone who has ever had a faith experience where they have been walking in obedience to the best of their ability, only to feel like God was almost picking on them by a mounting birage of unusual or uncomfortable circumstances will giggle during this film for all the right reasons.

The funny thing is when Evan appears to need God the most, He's strangely silent. Almost non-existant. It's like He gives Evan these absurd instructions and then leaves him all by himself to obey and explain himself to a bunch of people who think he's losing it.

Ever had to believe God at His word even when it made sense to no one but you and God? You'll probably like this movie. I'm not going to give away any more details here, but God does finally prove Himself faithful, as He always does.

A great take-home message is that there are benfits to faith. Go take your kids to see Evan Almighty despite anything a film critic has said.

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