I went to see the new film, War Room, this week. The movie, produced by Alex and Stephen Kendrick, drew a large audience on Thursday night (which is a very good indicator of the success of a film). The first week of release, it came in second place on box office receipts. That is incredible! Though its 11 million dollar opening does not constitute “blockbuster” status, they have certainly become a profitable operation, which is the dream of every filmmaker. As an avid moviegoer (I watch at least one new movie per week), I consider myself a pretty good judge of films. Because of this, I have witnessed the progress of the Kendrick brothers’ films and have observed their growth. Perhaps that is why I enjoy independent films; those that stray outside the Hollywood “box” that many producers follow in their pursuit of profits.
One of the secular critics said that the film would be “laughable” for mainstream viewers because of the film’s overtly evangelical twist. That is a foolish and uppity critique from someone focusing on the message as a way of discrediting the film. Anyone who regularly attends independent films understands that this is often the very purpose of independent pictures. As for me, my opinion is that War Room is a must-see for Christians because we need to support the budding industry of Christian films.
The World System Will Not Stop!
We are in a time of great warfare in the spiritual realm. We need Christians who will use every means to convey the evangelical message. We need to meet the world head-on!
When my daughter was a child, we enrolled her in a local dance school. When I saw that it was an avenue for the world to convey their standards on the children, I withdrew her from the school. I did not however withdraw her from dance. As a result, we started a school founded upon Christian values. Today, 21 years later, I am thrilled to see a first-rate studio that is a witness of the Kingdom in the arts.
My dream is not simply to provide a performing arts school, but to raise up visionaries who understand how they can bring Christ to every area of life. Jesus prayed for His disciples as He was getting ready to leave His mission in their hands. In John 17, we read His prayer, which was, “Father do not take them out of the world, but keep them.” We need to raise-up a generation that is “in” the world, but not “of” the world. The Kendrick brothers are where they are because their church and church community got together and supported them. We need to stand together as never before a unified front ready to confront the world system!
As a Christian leader, I feel like Paul must have felt as He was getting ready to leave the church at Ephesus. He warned them of current problems, but exhorted them to believe God and adhere to the Word in the time of trouble. In Revelation, we learn that the church of Ephesus kept the word, but unfortunately, they left their first love. We need to be firm in our beliefs, but also continue to be firm in “His” love!
For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God. Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. 30 Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears. “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified. (Acts 20:27-32)