Watching Paul Apostle of Christ

“Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2

imagesI read an article Mark Walsh wrote. It’s a review of the movie Paul Apostle of Christ. Click here to read his article. After reading it, I was kind of disappointed thinking the film would not highlight some of most significant journey’s Paul took in sharing the gospel with the world. However, after seeing the movie I was not disappointed, in fact, I was moved by how powerful some of the scenes were. The movie did seem slow in parts, but upon reflection, those were the moments that most affected me. I think if there had been a ton of action scenes you would not have been able to reflect on what was really transpiring at the end of Paul’s life. Of course, we can not fully know every detail. But to imagine is a powerful thing.

A vast majority of Paul’s lines were taken directly from scripture which was even more powerful. Especially if you knew those verses by heart. It was like if you were standing in front of the apostle and hearing him speak to you, speaking into your life. When reading the letters from Paul, we are often focused on his current situation, his surroundings, and his thoughts to us from his prison cells. We hardly ever think of the man facing death with all of the regrets and memories swirling around inside of his mind.

He said in Philippians that he forgets what is behind and reaches for what is ahead.

Brothers, I do not consider myself to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and reaching forward to what is ahead, 14 I pursue as my goal the prize promised by God’s heavenly call in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14

Why would he have to say that to us? To remind us that our past sometimes can plague us. That if we focus on what is back there, then we lose our focus on what God has given to us to do. His power in and through us comes in our weakness. And Paul reminds us over and over, we can do nothing without him.

The movie is worth seeing. Don’t go with any expectations. Let God use it to show you, where you are now in your faith walk, what He can do through suffering and sacrifice. I probably cried the last 30 minutes of the movie. It seemed to me that God used this film to show me how one day we all will have to make a stand for him. And it will cost us much. Will we be ready for the day, will I? Will we walk to it with grace? Will we give of ourselves with hands open or closed?

He drove home the point that Christianity is not something to mock or dismiss. It is not something we can pretend at or use as some magic rock to get things we want or to lift ourselves up as pious.

It is a calling. It is a way of life. It is Jesus Christ in you. In me!

Heart of Texas – The Movie

Last night I watched a movie (documentary) about a story of forgiveness, the likes which I have never seen!  If you can get a hold of this DVD (see link below) it will be well worth the time and expense.  As I was watching this movie the thought kept running through my mind…we always look for God in the mountain moving moments, the departing sea kind of event but never in a tragedy that pierces the deepest part of a soul.  What I witnessed in this account was just that, God and all His mercy and grace!!! You have got to see this movie!!!!

The Heart of Texas

"So seldom do you find a story that is so
heartbreaking, and yet so uplifting. The Heart of Texas is an
astonishing film that everyone should see."
Josh D. McDowell
Author and Speaker

"The
Heart of Texas provides a cinematic experience that will last long
after the viewing, a true tale of loss and redemption that will become
a part your life."
Ron Maxwell
Writer-Director of Gettysburg and Gods & Generals

"I
loved this story the first time I saw it….an incredible documentary
on the awesome power of God’s love that everyone needs to see."
Chuck Norris
Actor/Producer/Author of the N.Y.Times Bestseller Blackbelt Patriotism

"Down
through history, human beings have been wired for stories of sacrifice,
courage, redemption and forgiveness. Every man, woman and child has
been created with soul-strings running through their lives that
reverberate with meaning and power when plucked by certain stories. The
Heart of Texas is one of those stories, an unforgettable miracle that
would seem almost unbelievable — if it were not 100 percent true.
Don’t miss this story. Let it change your life."
Brian Bird, Co-Executive Producer of Touched By An Angel


"An unforgettable story of forgiveness."


Michael Landon, Jr. Director/Producer

"Forgiveness is the beginning of the journey Christians take toward
spiritual transformation. This movie gives us a clear glimpse of taking
the possible and making it the actual. It’s a must see!"
Dr. Larry Crabb, Best-selling Author and Speaker

"My wife and I wept with joy as we watched this wonderful film. This is a film that will bring hope to America".
Dr. Rick Scarborough, Pastor & Founder of Vision America

"Watch this Film. It will change your life!"
Reggie Dabbs, Author, Motivational Speaker

"This story will move your heart, change your life, and give you hope
in the potential for true redemption in a fallen world."
Greg Stier, President, Dare2Share Ministries

Family Night @ The Movies!

Man, what a time I had with my kids last night.  We went to see Spider-man 3. I purchased tickets Wed online so we wouldn’t have to mess with that since I was going to be driving in from work picking up my brood and the eating on the fly…which we did not get to do because of traffic.  My youngest was so excited, counting the days. And asking repeatedly, was I sure I bought the tickets.  I sat between my 10 year old, my 12 year old, and my daughter and her boyfriend on the end, watching this action packed drama, just as amazed as they were, at the imagination of all the people who put that piece of entertainment together. 

What was really cool, was the theme of the movie.  Basically you could sum it up with, revenge  destroys!  My boys got it pretty clearly. That was our discussion over pancakes at IHOP. Late show. And this morning while I drank my Saturday morning cup of coffee, little Sammy went over all the cool details of his favorite parts. I smiled while listening to his perspective on the story line.  I had read reviews Thursday, bemoaning how many villains were in the film and so that was a part of my movie-viewing checklist.  I think 3 villains in a movie is probably a good number.  1 would have been boring, 2 might have done the trick but 3 kind of clinched the point of the theme.  I mean the boys got to see “Harry” change for the good by forgiving towards the end and see the selfish jerk “Eddie” completely be destroyed.  As for the “Sandman”, well you kind of felt sorry for him but both of my boys remarked on the lesson in that…we all make choices, good or bad and there are always consequences.  We were able to speak about forgiveness, love and laying your life down for another.  And even redemption, a God of second chances.  That is one of the reasons I wanted to share the video above to extend the discussion to you all.  I love this song by Brandon Heath and I think it is appropriate for the theme. It is straight and to the point. I hope you enjoy it and God may use it to minister to you.

Grace to you all

Shell

Magic through a child’s eyes!

My daughter will be sixteen in a couple of months.  She is a wonderful person.  I become critical of her sometimes when I see things in her character that do not enhance her beauty. Inside as well as outside.  Even after all she has been through, she has so much more strength and confidence about herself than I did at her age.   She knows what she wants to be when she graduates from high school.  I am so happy for her.  We got to go on a mother/daughter date last friday night.  We went to see the Broadway production of “The Lion King”.  She was like a little girl again…full of excitement and wonder!  It was a memorable evening for me as a mother.  To enjoy the pagentry and spectacle live and then also to be taken back, remembering her as a little girl watching the movie and singing the songs. (a little girl behind us talked through the whole show, identifying each character – that would have been her at that age) It was magic!