Monday, February 27, 2012

MovieChurch in Lent

Last night at MovieChurch we watched “the Fighting Temptations”. It’s the second time we’ve watched this film together (although, in my defence, the first time since we amalgamated evening congregations with another local church).

I’d originally intended on screening “Liar Liar”, but having been a little unsure of some of its content, watched it a third time and pulled it, a shame because it has some nice themes worth exploring.

So, a film to start Lent with. Was it a good choice? It really was. There are echoes of lent in the movie, with the heart of the story being a 6 week preparation for a choir competition called “Gospel Explosion”. The choir of Beulah Baptist Church has to go through many travails to get to the event, including ridding itself of some bad habits, embracing the marginalised and the outsider, and going through crises or faith and conscience.

Cuba Gooding Jnr displays a fine comic sensitivity, whilst drawing out some great depths from his character, the down-on-his-luck advertising exec in desperate need of a break.  Beyonce Knowles almost pulls it off too, with just a few moments of acting inexperience showing through what is at times a very moving performance. The supporting cast of actors and gospel singers makes for a fun time, and the soundtrack (which I recently bought, it’s just so good) keeps the film moving along sweetly.

It’s a musical/comedy/romance that has at heart a simple message that is sung in the final song. Imagine these words coming from the mouths of young and old, black and white, church hypocrites, murderers, thieves, alcoholics, liars and adulterers as an act of worship, and you’ll realise why this pastor's heart breaks as I hear the song:

Took me awhile, but i'm finally here
So I just wanna testify, make it crystal clear
See I've been picked out, to be picked on
Talked about out my friend's mouth
I've been beat down, til' he turned my life around

Seems like I always fall short of being worthy
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me
I ain't no superstar, the spot light ain't shinin' on me
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me

I used to, wake up somedays, and wished I had stayed asleep
Cuz I went to bed on top of the world, today the world is on top of me
Now everybody's got opinions
They ain't been in my position
But it breaks my heart when I hear what they
Have to say about me

Seems like we always fall short
of being worthy (Lord I ain't worthy)
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me (but you still love me Lord)
I ain't no superstar,
the spot light ain't shinin' on me
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me

I'm not perfect
Yes I do wrong
I'm trying my best
But It aint good enough
Shunned by the world
If I don't succeed
Cuz I aint good enough
But he still loves me

If you ain't worth just raise your hands
And let me know that you understand
Stand for him or fall for anything
Cuz through his eyes we all look the same

Seems like we always fall short of being worthy
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me
I ain't no superstar,
the spot light ain't shinin' on me
Cuz I ain't good enough, but he still loves me

I'm not perfect
Yes I do wrong
I'm trying my best
But It aint good enough
Shunned by the world
If I don't succeed
Cuz I aint good enough
But he still loves me

I'm not perfect
Yes I do wrong (If you understand me sang with me)
I'm trying my best
But It aint good enough (But the Lord is so good to me)
Shunned by the world (Shunned by the world world world world)
If I don't succeed (Shunned by the world)
Cuz I aint good enough (I ain't good enough)
But he still loves me (But the Lord still loves me)


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