Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What Does It Mean To Be Courageous?

There is going to be an exciting new movie called Courageous released at the end of this month, September 30th to be exact. It is the latest in a string of pictures from Sherwood Pictures. Here is the trailer and related information. You may remember their last production, Fireproof. As a men's leader in my church, I was privy to an advance showing of Courageous a couple of months ago. This movie revolves around four police officers and a good friend. They are each dealing with the struggles, realities, and lasting impact of fatherhood. The movie not only delves into each man's unique situation, but dramatically brings out some strengths and weaknesses maybe not initially evident in the characters. The picture has much to offer the interested movie-goer. Action, humor, drama, and a few twists you probably won't see coming, are all evident. But most importantly, the movie addresses some critical topics for today's society and even goes on to present some of God's principles for success.

Many of the issues portrayed on the big screen in Courageous have been addressed in the material from our class, most specifically in the book Hurt People Hurt People by Dr. Sandra Wilson. On page 180 she brings up the idea of the "Father Wounds and Spiritual Confusion." She presents the theory that we tend to view God as we saw our father, for good or bad. For example, if you didn't have a very healthy father figure in your life, referring to God as a "loving Father" could be an oxymoron to you. Furthermore, one of the police officers in the movie struggles with what the book would call "Binding Shame." He grew up without a father on the scene and always felt as if he didn't measure up and was worth less than everyone else. Accepting the grace God offered helped him to come to see himself as worthy, loved, and forgiven. The idea of "Securing Your Own Oxygen Mask First" is introduced on page 219 in the book. Courageous clearly displays godly men attempting to tackle this challenge by getting healthy them selves so they can be strong examples to their wives, children, and others. In case you haven't figured it out yet, I think the movie is awesome and I have a strong feeling it is going to make a big difference in many homes around this country and, hopefully, the world.

Let me simply state the fact that Courageous is just plain a fun movie to watch! As I've already shared, it had everything a good movie should have, but with more piled on top. Granted, I'm a pretty emotional guy, but I certainly wasn't the only person in the packed theater who literally went from tears to laughter and a host of other emotions in between. There are deep moments of grief that tear at your heart and others that will make your stomach hurt from laughing. And of course there is the normal dose of cops-and-robbers drama you'd reasonably expect. But on top of all that, the eternally important message of forgiveness through Christ is clearly shared and the encouragement for men to be the leaders God wants them to be is demonstrated in powerful ways. I hope I have not only shared how Courageous lines up so well with what we're learning in class, but more importantly, whetted your appetite to get together with some friends and family to go see this meaningful new release. Even this cheap guy is going to drop the twenty bucks plus to bring my wife to it on September 30th. I hope to smell the popcorn with you!


  1. I think the point you made about how we tend to relate our image of our earthly fathers with the image of God - our heavenly father - is very valid and present in the lives of many these days. I have seen how bad father images have affected the lives and views of many teenagers, upon who God is and how he acts towards us. I think that it is interesting that the movie focuses also on how these men desire to change themselves in order to be better examples to their families and those around them. If all men and fathers would rise up to this, I believe we would see less wounded people in this area.

  2. "Father Wounds" I think is an interesting topic. To me, the idea contains so much truth, and it is so evident even in the people around me. Unfortunately this can bring about some marred and broken images of what our Heavenly Father truly is like. Therefore, this concept proposes a huge responsibility for men. I was talking to my dad about this idea a couple of weeks ago, and he agreed that as a father this idea is overwhelming.

  3. I really like this post. I think you brought up a good point addressed in the book regarding the "oxygen mask" analogy. I think so often parents get so caught up in the idea that they are bad parents if they focus on their own healing first. Unfortunately, by denying their own healing, they usually end up hurting others instead of helping. I am really excited for this movie to come out! I will be interested to see how it ties into what we've learned in Hurt People Hurt People.

  4. I think you did a very good job with this post especially connecting the Father Wounds to this movie. Your right when you say that we immulate our earthy fathers images to what our heavenly father is like, especially when we come from a background of hurt. I think that its an important topic Father Wounds especially for those who don't know God or for those who are just coming to God. The fact that they might take a negative protrayl of their earthy father and make it their complete example of how God must be, is heart breaking. I think that its important to note that we must help people break this cycle of hurt so that they can have an actual true representation of Gods love.


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