Tuesday, November 15, 2011

He Loves Me He Loves Me Not

What is our purpose for life? According to Jacob Palmer (Ryan Gosling) in the movie “Crazy Stupid Love,” life is about seeing how many women he can take home with him. This film is an accurate depiction of love and heart break. Cal, played by Steve Carell, is introduced to his wife’s affair and request for divorce. Broken, Cal spends many nights at the bar to help wash his hurt down with alcohol. It is his nights spent at the bar that he becomes introduced to Ryan Gosling’s character. Jacob is this smooth, hansom, lady’s man who spends his nights getting any girl he desires. Upon noticing Cal’s pitiful attire and despondent disposition, he approaches him with a proposition to change him into a lady’s man. Jacob is perfectly content with his life, which consist of different women coming and going every night- or is he? Jacob becomes complacent in his lifestyle for a while, but things change when he meets this girl who shows genuine interest in him as a person and not as a physical being. Jacob discloses his unhappiness and his embarrassment to admit how he desperately seeks intimacy with a female. He falls in love with this girl only to find out toward the end of the movie this girl is the daughter of Cal, the one he spent much time perfecting into a womanizer. The climax of the movie results in a much heated dramatic event, leaving all the character’s feeling shameful.

This movie conveys Dr. Larry Crabb’s book “Connecting” very well. Humans are designed for intimacy, not only with others, but with God. Within our core is the longing for closeness and connection with others, often times leaving us feeling lonely and unlovable if we are unable to find it. Even within a marriage, where intimacy and connection was first developed, it become easily lost when the couples becomes too consumed in other things apart from their partner and God. As Crabb mentioned, when this occurs, it often times results in blaming the other person instead of taking responsibility for their own lack of involvement in the relationship. Love is not a feeling, but a choice and when a person forgets this indispensable fact that is at the center of all our hearts, a downward spiral of self-centeredness and relational conflict can soon follow. Jacob spent much of his time in bars perfecting this ideal “lady’s man” image hoping this would satisfy his need to feel loved, but in the end he is left with a crushed pride and an empty heart.

            I enjoyed watching this movie because it uses a variety of emotions to pull the viewer in. They use humor to depict the sad reality that marriages are failing every day and people are giving up their self-worth to provide pleasure for the flesh. I think as soon as people realize God’s purpose for our lives: to come to know Him, love Him and others, and minister than the pleasures of this world will become less important and begin to take the back seat in our lives. “Connecting” was one of the most powerful books I have read and it expresses what most people feel, but are afraid to admit; our deep longing for connection is pushed aside by the psychological diagnosis and disorders that are thrown at us and a “I’ll pray for you” that may get thrown in there somewhere as well. It is when we know God and seek Him with all our hearts and mind (Luke 10:27) that real connection and intimacy can occur with others, just like God planned it to be.


  1. God can reveal himself in many forms. As Christians, I think that sometimes it is easy to fall into a confused state. The scriptures that talks about how we are in the world but not of the world, are dynamic. It is common sense to know that when you are in an environment some of the surrounding may rub off. Through prayer, fasting, daily devotionals or any other method that will strengthen the Christians mind and heart to live in this world is extremely important. Christians are on the right path for God's blue print design of humanity, how we were meant to and designed to connect. I encourage people to be so careful, because though we laugh, it is not funny. Confusion, heart break, deception is never pleasant or humorous. This post is great for depicting reality.

  2. I remember one of the lines that stuck out to me most in the movie was when Ryan Gosling's character starts opening up for the first time and admits that he's horribly unhappy. Throughout the entire movie he is trying to help Cal feel better about life by "getting with" all these women, but in the end, he's just as unhappy as Cal. I feel like this is such a strong picture of the type of connection Crabb was talking about. So often we get sucked into this false reality that if I have enough stuff, or if I have enough friends, or if I date a bunch of people then I'm a great person. But it doesn't work like that. We were made for meaningful relationships. The kind where the person sees your fallen-ness, yet also sees the good and reaches out to nurture the good.

  3. I agree with you, "Connecting" is a very powerful book and will be among those I will recommend to clients in the future. It reminded me of how often we settle for much less than true connection, even in our relationships with fellow Christians.
    I have not seen this movie but it sounds as if it could be worth watching if it exposes some of the myths about what is real, true intimacy and authentic connecting. Unfortunately so many believe the lies that Hollywood and much of today's society portray as intimacy and connecting, and how they can be found.

  4. I watched the movie the other night and understand how it depicts are inner need for connection and how it can be expressed through different ways. Many times though, this desire of connecting with others, as shown, is not expressed in the most Biblical ways. And I really agree with the idea that in the end all connection is routed in our inner drive to reconnect with God, and that as we go throgh that we are in constant search of that true connection.


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