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The Establishment of a Ministry
on February 14, 2009
After seeing "Facing the Giants," then going to the theater to see "Fireproof," and subsequently also buying that DVD; I had to also see the initial effort by the Sherwood Baptist Church in Albany, Georgia.
The intent of this movie was to be a ministry outreach to their community, and the goal was to show it in a local theater for one night. It ended up being shown for weeks, being shown elsewhere, and then released on DVD. Its success led to the production of the two later projects.
If you are going to judge it alongside Hollywood productions- yes, the quality is not on the same level; yes, the writing is not on the same level; yes, the acting is not on the same level; and yes, the production values are not on the same level. But, it's still not bad- especially for a first-time effort by a group of amateurs. And believe me, I've seen plenty of larger-budget movies by Hollywood professionals that were much worse.
You have to realize, that although the intent of this movie is to entertain; the heart of it is to minister. At the time when Mel Gibson's "Passion of the Christ" was released and became a blockbuster, and more religious-themed movies began being to be produced, it was said that the movie theater was becoming the new church. Let's face it, the past efforts of Christian movies, produced by Christians, have left a lot to be desired. But with "Flywheel" the bar was raised.
As a Christian, knowing that this is a message movie, I watched it with "spiritual" eyes, so I was able to overlook its inadequacies. There is such an anointing on this movie, and it is very apparent that the Sherwood Baptist Church is yearning to bring glory to God, and to lift up Christ.
Even so, I don't believe it will turn-off non-Christians, because it isn't preachy. The Godly values that the movie portrays is really just a demonstration of ethical living and doing the right thing. The movie is a witnessing tool, because it shows that you can preach a better message with your life, and not just your lips. In other words, actions speak louder than words.
The goal for any Christian is to live a Godly life, and although many times we fall short, God's grace is sufficient. It's not about religion- it's about relationship. The movie shows what happen when we reach out to our Heavenly Father and are sensitive to what's in His heart. It's not about us. This movie shows what happen when we put aside what we want in order to do what God wants.
We sing for God to Bless America, but why would He, if we're not willing to bless God in word and deed. The Sherwood Baptist Church is doing that with "Flywheel" and continue to do so with "Facing the Giants" and "Fireproof." If you're a Christian and you haven't seen all of these movies- you need to. Not only for the simple fact that they will bless you- but also to support this ministry. If you're not a Christian- these movies offer a practical demonstration of how God wants to work in our lives and our hearts, and how He wants to interact with us in a very real way.