Illustration results for choices
How many of you have seen the modern-day Christmas classic, “A Christmas Story?” It’s a great movie about one family’s Christmas season and a little boy’s mission to receive the Cadillac of BB guns as a present. The Miano family watches this movie every year. Whenever I see the scene of Ralphie being forced to try on the bunny pajamas, I think of the purple turtleneck sweaters my grandmother would get me every year. I hated those sweaters—and I had to wear them whenever grandma came over.
The movie is filled with scenes that will take you back to the nostalgia of your childhood. Another such scene is one in which the tongue plays a prominent role. The scene involves Ralphie, whose adult counterpart narrates the entire movie, and Ralphie’s friends, Flick and Schwartz.
We find the three boys, along with a bunch of other kids, huddled around the school flagpole. It is a cold and snowy day, and everyone is bundled up like Eskimos. The scene begins with Schwartz trying to convince Flick that his tongue would stick to the flagpole. Flick told Schwartz he was “full of it.” Schwartz responds by issuing a “double-dog dare” to Flick. The camera pans to Ralphie and the group of kids who all gasp at the challenge.
Flick is momentarily taken aback by the challenge, but quickly smiles and says that it would be stupid for him to put his tongue on the flagpole. The narrator returns and explains the etiquette of the dare. He explains that proper form would be to follow his “double-dog dare” with a “triple-dare-you.” If this challenge was not met, then, and only then, should Schwartz go to the worst of the worst—“the triple-dog dare.”
But Schwartz, determined to see his friend’s tongue stuck to the flagpole, goes for the jugular and, with the authority of a nine-year-old, issues a “triple-dog dare.” You can see the panic on Flick’s face as he realizes that he has no choice but to place his tongue on the flagpole. To do otherwise, to refuse a “triple-dog dare” challenge, would be tantamount to playground cowardice.
So with some false bravado, and a lot of uncertainty, Flick sticks out his tongue and touches it to the flagpole. Any guesses as to what happened? Yep. It stuck like a bug on flypaper. Of course, Flick panicked and started to squeal like a little girl (no offense ladies). The school bell rang, which made it convenient for Flick’s good friends, Ralphie and Schwartz, along with all of the other kids, to scramble back to class, leaving Flick alone in his moment of shame and pain.
Pride got in the way of Flick making a wise decision. Pride caused Flick to say and do things he should not have done. The moral of the story is that the pride of the tongue, the pride of speech, if you will, can stick us with some very serious consequences. And this is what James addresses in verse one and the first half of verse two, in chapter three.
D. Greg Ebie
· In the movie "Groundhog Day" actor Bill Murray wakes up to the same day over and over. He finds himself confronted with the same situations he had faced just the day before all over again; only of course it isn’t a new day–he’s stuck on groundhog’s day. Only he is aware of the repetition which is taking place as he experiences the repetition of the day before. Confronted with the same choices once again, Murray is able to change what had happened previously by making a different choice.
If only it were that easy! How many of us have ever had a day that we would like to live over again. If only we could go back and right our mistakes; if only we could learn from our mistakes before others were hurt.
Video Illustration: Ghost – Toward the end of the movie Sam the departed soul battles his friend who is trying to kill his wife. The man ends up killing himself in the battle and discovers he has made a wrong choice and he is hauled away into torment and darkness by demonic spirits. Sam tells his love when the Light of Heaven appears that the Love inside is what you take with you when you go to Heaven. This scene paints the picture that we wrestle not against flesh and blood but principalities and powers.
In the TV series Firefly, in the episode “The Great Train Robbery,” the captain has agreed to a job to steal something. After finding out that it is medicine, which is badly needed, he decides to break his contract and return the stolen medicine. The sherif catches him returning the medicine and says something to the effect that people take jobs that they don’t understand but when the truth is known they have to a choice to make. The captain’s answer was, “No, I don’t have a choice.”
Gladly doing what...
Dr. Bruce Emmert
On a scale of 1 to 10, how optimistic are you about your future? In that great mid-life crisis movie, City Slickers, Billy Crystal’s character Mitch attends career day at his son’s grade school. Mitch is anything but optimistic. His son had told everyone that his dad was a submarine captain, but he really sells advertising. The kids aren’t interested at all in what he does—and neither is he. In classic Baby Boomer angst, Mitch gives the kids something to think about. He tells the kids to
“Value this time in your life, because this is the time in your life when you still have your choices, and it goes by so quickly. When you’re a teenager, you think you can do anything, and you do. Your twenties are a blur. Your thirties, you raise your family, you make a little money and you think to yourself, "What happened to my twenties?" Your forties, you grow a little potbelly, you grow another chin. The music starts to get too loud and one of your old girlfriends from high school becomes a grandmother. Your fifties you have a minor surgery. You’ll call it a procedure, but it’s a surgery. Your sixties you have a major surgery, the music is still loud but it doesn’t matter because you can’t hear it anyway. Seventies, you and the wife retire to Fort Lauderdale; you start eating dinner at two, lunch around ten, breakfast the night before. And you spend most of your time wandering around malls looking for the ultimate in soft yogurt and muttering, "how come the kids don’t call?" By your eighties, you’ve had a major stroke, and you end up babbling to some Jamaican nurse who your wife can’t stand but who you call mama. Any questions? (From City Slickers)
On a scale of 1 to 10, he was a 1—he was a man without hope!
Comedian Billy Crystal plays the part of a bored baby boomer who sells radio advertising time. One the day he visits his son’s school to tell about his work along with other fathers, he suddenly lets loose a deadpan monologue to the bewildered youngsters in the class:
Value this time in your life, kids, because this is the time in your life when you still have your choices. It goes by fast.
When you’re a teenager, you think you can do anything and you do. Your twenties are a blur.
Thirties you raise your family, you make a little money, and you think to yourself, "What happened to my twenties?"
Forties, you grow a little pot belly, you grow another chin. The music starts to get too loud, one of your old girlfriends from high school becomes a grandmother.
Fifties, you have a minor surgery-you’ll call it a procedure, but it’s a surgery.
Sixties, you’ll have a major surgery, the music is still loud, but it doesn’t matter because you can’t hear it anyway.
Seventies, you and the wife retire to Fort Lauderdale. You start eating dinner at 2:00 in the afternoon, you have lunch around 10:00, breakfast the night before, spend most of your time wandering around malls looking for the ultimate soft yogurt and muttering, "How come the kids don’t call? How come the kids don’t call?"
The eighties, you’ll have a major stroke, and you end up babbling with some Jamaican nurse who your wife can’t stand, but who you call mama.
The Body, Charles W. Colson, 1992, Word Publishing, pp. 168-169
Several Years ago there was a movie that starred Nicolas Cage. It was about a New York City Cop who didn’t have enough money for a tip. He felt bad about it so he gave her a choice. She could wait until tomorrow and he would come back and bring her a few dollars or she could have half of anything he might win on a lottery ticket he had purchased earlier in the day. I really identified with this movie because as you know I too am a waiter. What you may not know is that I am also a delivered compulsive gambler. Well the waitress did exactly what I would have done in the same situation. She took a chance. If you haven’t seen the movie or didn’t here about the true story that inspired it let me tell you what happened. They won. The movie goes on to tell of all the good and bad things that happened to them after winning this large amount of money. The title was
It Could Happen to You.
As I thought about that movie I thought about all the possible out comes and what would I have done if that had happened to me.
SERVANTHOOD: THE SOLOIST
There was an interesting movie recently. It bombed at the box office, but it was a very interesting film. "The Soloist" was a true story about a Los Angeles Times columnist named Steve Lopez who discovered a homeless person on the street who, in turn, was a Julliard School of Music dropout. At one point in the film, the homeless person (exhibiting evidence of the schizophrenia he denied) shouted that Steve Lopez was his god. And Lopez, believing that he was turning that stated devotion into a good thing, commanded the man to do something that he thought would benefit the man. As a result, Lopez went through a personal crisis when he was rejected by the homeless man, frustrated because he had tried to provide good things to the fellow, but experienced only hostile ingratitude and even assault at the hands of his intended beneficiary.
The truth remains, no matter how beneficent our intentions, we be God for anyone else, we can only point people to God, the ONLY authentic and valid choice. A lot of people don’t like the idea that God would "command" people to love Him. They would perceive this as weakness in God, some human type of insecurity and neediness. As with all of the commandments, thou...
Jars of Clay sings about how we should be in love with the One who we praise – Listen to their song “Love Song for a Savior” and note some of their words and the heartbeat of this song. Catch these phrases in the song
i. He is as close as a heart beat.
ii. We must learn how to see Him
iii. We must run and fall into His arms
iv. Do you want to fall in love with Him?
v. It is your choice!
vi. But you may be thinking it that it seems too easy to call Him Savior!
1. But it is that simple!
2. How can we show Him proper devotion? Give Him your heart and your life!
3. Do you want to? Then do it as this song is played!
Play Song: “Love Song for a Savior”
Action point: Do you want to fall in love with Him then open up you heart?
Video Clip: The Guardian - Start: Chp. 5 43:54 - Stop: 46:16
Senior Chief Randall had a choice. He could have taught the recruits about hypothermia as an abstract theory during a lecture from the comfort of a classroom. Instead, Randall chose to fill the pool with freezing water and then share the experience with his students. He wanted them to “see” and “feel” the effects of hypothermia not just hear about it from a sterile classroom.
Jesus Christ, the greatest teacher, did something very similar. He wanted to teach his disciples about serving others. But instead of just telling them he showed them. John 13:3: “Jesus knew that the Father had given him authority over everything and that he had come from God and would return to God. 4So he got up from the table, took off his robe, wrapped a towel around his waist, 5and poured water into a basin. Then he began to wash the disciples’ feet and to wipe them with the towel he had around him.” Then he said, “Whoever wants to be a leader among you must be your servant...” Just as those recruits understood hypothermia by being in the cold water, Jesus knew that we would learn best by watching Him actually serve.