Thursday, April 3, 2008

August Rush

Shaina and I got our most recent NetFlix last week and watched August Rush, a story about an orphan boy who believes wholeheartedly that he will get back to his parents, who for the majority of the movie don't know he exists. The way it will happen? Through the music that links them together of course.

Yes it is moderately predictable...Sure its a little bit cheezy...but all and all its a pretty decent feel good movie. Robin Williams gives one of his only good performances in the last decade as the man who introduces August Rush to the music he'd always had inside him. This unleashing of the music leads to him becoming a child prodigy, while Williams character manipulates and connives to make profit off of him and many other talented child musicians.

It does of course utilize the monotonously used "Caught up in passionate love at first sight" one night stand motif, which I hope no one believes is real or reliable. Other than that it brings up some good lessons.

The first is that the music is out there...don't get sappy on me...but the mighty Conductor is creating a symphony all around us...yet often we are too self absorbed to hear it, to find it...and to join along with it.

Second, a more ethically charged lesson. Child exploitation is not good. Now obviously a homeless man training and then exploiting the musical talents of homeless children is extreme...but this is something I see happening in this country...Often done by parents. What is the obsession with getting one's child to be involved so heavily in sports, music, name it? Kids are being rushed from this practice to this rehearsal, to this game, to this function...and while they may increase in their talents and win in their games...the place that feels the decrease and the loss is the home. The family unit is really messed up right now. Where is the family meal? Where are family nights? Family meetings? Family vacations? Family devotions?

I have seen it in my experiences working with youth...they go down the wrong path...drugs, alcohol, name it...and the parents wonder what went wrong? Sometimes they blame the youth group. "Why didn't you teach my kids better." Sadly, sometimes parents think that the hour a week that is spent in youth group is all the discipleship training that a young person needs to follow Christ. It is not the church's job to raise your kid up in the faith of Christ...It is yours! Own it...Embrace it...Live it. Dang...I start with a post about a movie and end up with a sermon.

1 comment:

Mike Schnee said...

First of, we loved that movie too and agree on the messages behind it. Secondly, RIGHT ON BROTHA! The problem is that parents are literally worshiping their kids. It is who they revolve their lives around, their schedules, their EVERYTHING. It is disturbing to hear parents complain about how they HAVE to be here and HAVE to be there, then go there, and be back there to pick up that kid and do this with that kid, and make sure dinner is made and the house is clean....WHY!? First of all, they don't HAVE to do ANYthing. They are the PARENTS. They make the decisions -- yay or nay.

Second of all, parents aren't supposed to be their kids' "friend". They need to be a parent -- nurturing, caring, loving -- in the fullest sense of the words. They are making their kids into idols. Then the kids grow up to worship themselves and the things they're "good" at because that's how they were raised.

Finally, I see it as a generational issue. The baby boomer's parents were disciplinarians. Things were very strict and rigid, while kids were pretty much left with unconnected and uninvolved parents for the most part. Then you have our parents generation (the baby boomers). This generation was the opposite -- they wanted to be their kids' friends, let them do and have pretty much whatever they asked for. Now, you have our generation. We worship our children, as I mentioned above. We lift them up and treat them like we never were. There are daycare babies and unconnected parents that simply do, do, do. They're always on the run, always trying to please everyone.

The bottom line is parents NEED to keep God the center of the home. Do that, and everything will happen His way. For the sake of saving space in your comments section, I'll stop there. Go TRIBE!!