Fulfilled in Jesus

Our pilgrimage with our Beloved in Japan -- Yoko & Ramone on the journey with Jesus!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The Saint of Fort Washington




I'm going to try to sum up this film up simply: This is a movie about two men who are homeless in New York. I wonder how much you want to continue reading now that I've said that?

If I had been reading, I probably would've stopped. Maybe if I had time I would skim. Lord, it's hard. We all feel inconvenienced and heavy, don't we? Sure, there are many who can ease their consciences away by coming up with any number of reasons for faulting the guys themselves.

They must be lazy.
They're crazy.
They're only wanting drinks or drugs.
They don't want to work.
They want a hand-out.
Anyone who really wants to work can.
I pulled myself up, so can they.

The internet movie database helpfully includes this note about the film: "In order to research his role in the film, Danny Glover actually went incognito as a homeless person to get the feel for the struggles and hardship that homeless people endure."

That's more than I've done, and likely more than you have, too. Not that I'm blaming you, not anymore than I blame myself. It's not about blame! But that's the truth, isn't it? We feel blamed when we see them. We don't know what to do. I don't know what to do. Lord, what can I do?

The Danny Glover character tells his son that "Everyone has a story". Seeing this film I realize again I want to know their stories. The thought that some of their stories may be lost hurts. Worse. They are dying.

Somehow I'm learning as I grow that everyone has a story, and I want to know every one of them. Somehow it helps you understand that each person is valuable, each person is important. No, each person is precious. If I care--or want to care--that much, how much more interested is our Father! He always has time to hear, and unlike me & most of us, He's interested in giving us His full attention.

Lord, what can I do here? Help me find a way to love them, Jesus. Thank You for never forgetting them, for caring, and for not letting one story disappear from Your heart. Grant me Your heart, and grant me Your heart in my walking. In Jesus' name, amen.

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The Saint of Fort Washington (1993)
Starring Danny Glover & Matt Dillon
Directed By Tim Hunter
Rated R.

Read Roger Ebert's honest review.

5 Comments:

  • At January 19, 2006 6:52 AM, Blogger DJ said…

    I haven't read the review yet, but am wondering, what is it rated R for?

     
  • At January 19, 2006 1:24 PM, Blogger Ramone said…

    For "language".

    And really, the rating is unnecessary.

    In his review for "Bowling For Columbine", Roger Ebert rightly said that we are barring young people from seeing the films that they most need to see. This is one of them, not only for young people, though.

     
  • At January 26, 2006 7:23 AM, Blogger Crystal said…

    Wow. *adds to list of movies to watch*

     
  • At February 04, 2006 2:43 AM, Anonymous shadow said…

    R is for language and it is very roughand vulger to put it politely, but the movie as adepiction of homelessness is very good, the scenery of nyc is the inner bowels of the city and it shows the chaos, misery, surface hopelessness, and fruitlesnessof human endevors.egberts monologue on it does a good job on the film and it message. two main people do a good job in their portrayal, we used an electronic filtering program on the talk so were spared a lot of profanity. but the film does get it,s message out and across, i could not watch it twice in a row, but had to take several days between the viewings.it made me realisethat but for the grace of GOD there would i be, it made me appreciate what i have and know where it really comes from, not from my own efforts by itself. the visuals stuck in my mind for some time. a good film to keep humble by.

     
  • At February 05, 2006 12:05 AM, Blogger Ramone said…

    The language at times is rough, but it is not vulgar (in a Quentin Tarantino sense). There is a difference.

    I don't like using swearing language myself, and I don't enjoy hearing a lot of it. But I know there are certain cultures where people use it without having bad hearts.

    (Yes, I am saying that the homeless have a very different culture than middle class people, or even people merely living in homes)

    For many of us, we think it is God's grace that has given us a middle class life, but there are some who by God's grace have lost everything and yet become far richer than us. We can't see the difference by merely looking at them...

    One of my friends met a homeless lady in California who in the truest sense possible was a minister and a prophet. God called her to that life and was working His beauty in her and through her. The danger is when we look at our middle class affluency as God's grace to us, when in truth God's grace is something far better and exists deeper and apart from our social level.

    Awhile back I was sharing witih friends online how I felt God's heart calling me into a ministry of compassion in a dark place in my city, and I wrote this:

    You know, the thing that really has shocked my eyes open is the never-ending uphill feeling of going into such a calling, going down a road where the baton will be passed down from servant to servant.

    You see, we tend to think of a goal before we go to action. But I'm beginning to understand that the Kingdom doesn't always work on earth that way, that He calls us to look to Him for fulfillment of the promises in the end, and sends us down a road that, on earth, has no end 'til the End.

    A quote from a book that Metro Ministries (headed by Bill Wilson -- google it) gives to child sponsers really said it bluntly:

    "...Jesus really is alive---and if He is not limited to the middle-class neighborhoods and suburbs---but if He is introduced to America's underclass, there will be a change. It may not be the kind of change the rest of America has come to expect, because they equate Christianity with their own lifestyle. Christianity in the ghetto may not be the same Christianity that resides in the suburbs, but that's really not bad: because it's not Christianity we're trying to propagate---it's Jesus."

    Suddenly I realize that I've equated all the good things in life with whatever God would call me to do in life. I pitied those below my standard of living, and thought it would be great for the church to reach out and help the poorer classes and bring them up to a better way of life.

    But what if that better way of life is not a standard of living at all? What if He sends me somewhere to minister to people and bring them hope and life, in a place where there is no hope of "bringing up the standard"? So much of my idea of "mission" has been about the standard of living.

    But now suddenly the gopsel is not about the standard of living to me ... I know there is something greater, deeper, and I am being called to give up my ideas of Christianity as my lifestyle standard, just to bring people Him.

     

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