The Role Of Faith In Life's Suspenseful Scenes
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The Role Of Faith In Life's Suspenseful Scenes

What's the point of having faith?

The Role Of Faith In Life's Suspenseful Scenes

You may feel like you can enjoy much more freedom with the perspective that you should live life for yourself because this is all there is. Life's what you make of it, after all. You can control your own destiny. Why surrender it to someone else who probably doesn't even exist?

I will never forget the second time I saw the classic movie, "Back To The Future." It was for this cinema series that Atlanta's Fabulous Fox Theatre was holding last summer. Imagine hundreds of rows of antique seats filled with people watching this film displayed on a big screen on the stage, (as shown in the photo below). I was one of those with a balcony view, and I had not seen this movie since the fourth grade. I was really looking forward to seeing it again because I had always regarded it as one of my favorite movies. It was that good. (By the way, if you have not seen this film yet, I suggest you take care of that, pronto. You will be glad you did.)

There is a reason I went on this tangent:

It is likely you have at least one friend who is cynical about the "happily ever afters" in fairy tales and family movies. Perhaps you are that person yourself.

Happy endings? What about after that? The obstacles don't end when the hero saves the day. That's unrealistic nonsense. We all know that in real life, every day is a battle. That won't change after the princess and the prince get married and float off into the sunset. Even after your fondest memories and greatest triumphs, you have witnessed the death of at least one person you love. You have experienced great pain. Loneliness. You have been scarred by the turmoil you see happening in society all around you. You have feared your safety.

There have been moments, even great lengths of time, when you have felt like it is completely hopeless. Kind of like the way I felt my second time watching that scene where Doc and Marty are struggling to get Marty and the time machine back to 1985.

They are just minutes away from the time that the lightning was going to strike the clock tower, and the suspense is real. My anxiety grew with every inch that the minute hand came nearer to 10:04 p.m., as I witnessed everything that could possibly go wrong occur. (See the video above.) There was just no way they could make it back in time. With all the many obstacles in that scene, I simply couldn't see how, and I cringed in my seat, wanting nothing more but to cover my eyes and bang my head against a wall. However, in spite of it all, I had this hope stirring inside of me. It was the hope that came from watching the film before. From what I could recall from seeing it the first time, I still had a blurry memory of the last scene where Marty returns home unscathed to a more confident father. Although I was in the midst of the frustration of a highly suspenseful and seemingly hopeless bind, this reassurance allowed me to trust that it was going to turn out alright.

You cannot argue against the fact that we are all weak. In this weakness we can fall into times of despair, through which the pain we suffer seems endless. Unconquerable. The possibilities diminish, and we feel a weariness that words cannot do justice to. Each day is a burden on our shoulders. You may find yourself completely alone in these times; everyone whom you encounter is just too preoccupied to understand what you are going through, to try to console you or to even keep you company in the dark. You want to be freed from this anguish, but you don't see any way out. You are ashamed of yourself for what you've done or failed to accomplish, feeling so hindered by your past, by this darkness that you fear still remains inside of you.

My faith is what reassures me that these "suspenseful scenes" are only temporary. The battle between good and evil has already been won; now it is up to me to choose a side. And I choose Jesus. He has endured all of the pain, all of the anguish that we have ever experienced combined, so that we can each have a "happily ever after." Even though it seemed that all hope had been lost as He was tortured and crucified, He demonstrated through His Resurrection — the greatest of all miracles — that He can and will take care of all things if we choose to place our trust in Him. I know that He will carry me when I am at my weakest, though I may not have the capacity to feel it. Although I lack the wisdom to imagine what God can do to allow everything to work out, I will follow Jesus.

I trust that He will be with me in my loneliest of times, and that He will lead me home ... to where the unrealistic endings of family movies are possible and sustainable. Home, to where evil and suffering can no longer taunt me. This song sums it up beautifully.

Furthermore, I know that this life is not everything, so it does not matter how hopeless it may seem at the moment. The joy God has to offer us in Heaven is greater than any pain we could ever experience. As Jesus said Himself in John 16:19-22:

"In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me... Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.'"

So often, we are encouraged to take process-oriented, rather than a product-oriented approach. While that can be good to a certain extent, I think at times it can be our downfall. This life is a blink of an eye compared to eternity, yet we still live with the mindset that we exist for the process preceding it, almost as if the afterlife will solely consist of us celebrating the compelling journey that led us to it. Thus, we get so caught up in trying to make our lives as entertaining and carefree as we can manage, and we find ourselves extremely frustrated when there seem to be no answers in terms of what the future will hold. However, we must remember that we truly exist for a bigger picture, which we consistently neglect: God lovingly created us in the hopes that we will choose to spend eternal life in union with Him. Thus, since He is the way, the truth and the life, we must look to Him always — in our sorrows and in triumphs — even when the path He is leading us through is unclear.

My faith in Jesus in the midst of hopeless situations is just like my memory of the ending of "Back To The Future" during the most stressful scene. I know it doesn't matter how "Marty" makes it through, I just trust he will.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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