"I count myself one of the number of those who write as they learn and learn as they write." ~St. Augustine

Friday, May 27, 2011

Lessons from a Stupid Movie

I watched a silly, stupid movie last night.

After a full day, I decided to watch a free, streaming-online movie. I really wanted to find a clean movie that was mild in any moral offensiveness. So, I searched a bit, found one that was promising, and checked the content on one of my favorite sites for movie content (Spotlight on Entertainment). I did find a film to watch that was quite mild. ...and also very stupid.

So, no, ...this is not a movie I would recommend (for it's sheer silliness and bad writing). But, that said, I believe God has used it today in my life. He does show up in the most unlikely of places, doesn't He?!

Okay, the movie was called "Confessions of a Shopaholic". In short, this young woman has a shopping addiction. Her addiction is dealt with in light-hearted, humorous way, to be sure, and the silliness of the movie is an attempt (I think) at satire. But, essentially, the audience watches as this woman ruins her life and all she loves in submission and bondage to this "mild" addiction. She has a lust and devotion to shopping, to "new" things, beautiful things, and "name brands". And, it tears her and her life apart little-by-little.

Toward the end of the movie, the man she loves asks her to tell him, "Why" she shops likes she does. He wants to hear her heart. He wants to understand. She pauses and answers something like, "...I shop because it makes me happy. I am happy for one very real moment. And, then ...well, then, I am not happy anymore. And, .... (pause for effect) then I have to shop again."

And, then I have to shop again. Profound, really. Maybe even a bit redemptive when looking at this badly made film! In this statement she sums up the pull and tug of the world and it's "offerings" to the human race. And, thus the beauty of the message of this stupid movie.

And, today, her answer rings true in my heart.

Just fill in the blank, Stephanie.

I _____ because it makes me happy. Even for just a moment, I feel happy. And, then I have to _____ again to be happy again.

What is it... shop, sleep, eat, read, watch, play, listen, drink, talk with, ... ?

Everyone has their escape, their addictions... surely some more "mild" than others. These "places" we go can be immoral, amoral, or even "good places". But, all these addictions, or devotions of heart, just "help" for a moment. ...I suppose even long moments, for some. But certainly they don't bring complete or lasting happiness. And, we have to have more (do more, eat more, get more, watch more) to get "more" happiness. ...like a drug.

I am not advocating the law, nor the ending of all shopping, eating, reading, sleeping, watching or playing. That is ludicrous. No, I am just wondering after my own heart.

I am wondering about
what I run to first...
what I devote my time to...
from where I gain my peace...
where I search out happy feelings...
or, where I go to find rest...

What is it that God offers us? What is it that He offers in Himself that is uniquely different than these other "places"?

...a stream of ever-flowing, living water. ...
...faithful love that endures forever. ...
...guarding, reigning peace. ...
...complete and fullness of joy. ...

Very, very different than my escapes, my other loves, and my other devotions!

From this silly movie, I am reminded to seek Him first. I am reminded that it is only He that satisfies all the longings in my heart, my mind and my body.

Only Him. Him alone. His girl alone.
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