Movies, life, and 'God's screenplay'

A Christian Science perspective: Opting to see life as God has shaped it frees us from sorrow.

Movies serve a wonderful purpose in society when they uplift, educate, and sometimes expose. In some cases people place great importance on movies, expecting a film to cheer them up when they’re sad or to express their anguish, disappointment, and discouragement. At times, movies satisfy those needs. Also, movies can inform and awaken viewers to serious cultural and political issues.

A Monitor feature explores the recent Oscar nominees, which author Neal Gabler sees as reflecting society’s predominant thought – a general malaise. Whether or not you agree with that evaluation of society’s mood and the assessment of the Oscar contenders, every movie viewer has a role to play. A further and important step is to examine the “screenplay” we entertain in thought and bring that up against the light of Truth, God. This leads us away from buying into the general mood around us, thinking it’s ours, then finding ourselves taking it on.

The human mind constantly projects images that it believes are true but that have no foundation in the face of spiritual reality. Rather than accepting a material picture, which can at times look hopeless, why not see that God has written the only true screenplay, based on His view of reality as spiritual and good? This view exposes the emptiness of the material picture and its resulting malaise.

A screenwriter’s work expresses individual consciousness. That’s infinitely true for God as divine Mind, the source of all intelligence. The difference is that when God writes the script, it becomes fact, not fiction. In the Bible, the Gospel of John explains, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.... All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not” (John 1:1, 3-5).

All that God makes reflects His nature as Love, Life, and Spirit – all synonyms for Him. His light shines even where darkness and despair seem to be the overriding mood. Looking for this light and turning to it awakens one from the mesmerism of darkened thought. It lays to rest the hatred, fear, and greed barraging consciousness.

Realizing that one has a choice regarding which script to rehearse in thought can be incredibly liberating. We choose the thoughts we entertain. The Bible says it like this: “I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live” (Deut. 30:19). What does this choice mean? Answers to that moment-by-moment question, which we’d all do well to ask, will unfold in thought throughout our lives. We’ll find that opting to see life as God has shaped it frees us from the crippling effect of sorrow, by replacing it with the anticipation of good, a sense of well-being – the recognition of the kingdom of heaven within. That’s not a bad dwelling place.

People have the divine right to look beyond the projected image, to see the universe of God’s creating – intact and at peace.

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