Here’s how it went. Saturday night, I realized the Oscars were gonna be on the next day, so I better try to watch at least one of the best picture nominees since I hadn’t seen any of them (nor set foot in a movie theater in months). Argo was on iTunes and looked like a favorite, so Kalen and I rented it. It’s been a while since we’ve even finished a movie at home, honestly, and Kalen didn’t make it, but I did. And I loved the film.
Then, Sunday, it won the Oscar! And while my main concern was keeping the statuses rolling for the annual Oscar Social Snarkfest on Facebook and Twitter, I was hit hard in the emotional/spiritual gut by Ben Affleck’s acceptance speech. Indeed, I really felt that God was speaking to me through that speech.
Fact is, it’s been a rough couple of months. Couple of years, really. And Affleck’s description of coming into Hollywood on the first Oscar win, and having no idea what he was doing, and learning that he had to work harder than he ever thought possible, and then getting knocked down and having to keep getting back up, was a pitch-perfect description of my own experience in ministry, and especially church planting.
And you can’t hold a grudge. It’s so hard, but you can’t hold a grudge.
The kicker, though, was the undeniable authenticity of his love for his wife and family. “Thank you for working on our marriage for 10 Christmases…there’s no one I’d rather work with.” That’s it, exactly! And then, as he trailed off in tears as he spoke of his kids, I began sobbing, too.
For reasons I can’t get into here, this week marks what is likely the biggest turning point in my life and ministry to date.
And I needed to hear from God.
Thanks, Ben, for giving voice to those words, straight from the Spirit: Get back up.