Good acting doesn’t take the place of compassion and sensitivity to God’s voice. That’s the lesson I learned this past week while teaching Sunday school with my wife to about 12 grade one 6 year old children. For while I was doing my best to “act out” the story of the week (that is, to dramatize it using my voice and gestures), a little boy suddenly “interrupted” me by saying, “You forgot to take attendance!” Now he did this right while I was talking.
At once, my spirit — not the Lord’s — responded by thinking to myself, “It doesn’t matter. I will continue on with my story!” But as I did — that is, as I attempted to do so — a gentle voice, as subtle and yet as certain as the scent of a rose at a distance of about 5 or 10 feet said to me, “Are you sure that wasn’t Me speaking with to you just now through that little boy? It might be My will to take attendance right now!” “Preposterous!” I thought to myself, as I did inward battle against the Holy Spirit … and this in the middle of a Sunday school lesson to the ones that Jesus loved!
What was happening? Well, instead of being the sensitive person that God had called me to be, I was trying to be a “Hollywood Superstar” with these 6 year old children. Maybe I was trying to impress my wife, or the children, or maybe it was the authorities under whom we were serving that I was trying to somehow “impress” — I don’t know — but what I do know is that I was not listening to the Holy Spirit. It took that little boy to “aggravate my spirit” as it were — that is, to wake me up!
Suddenly — realizing I was beginning to resist the Holy Spirit — I agreed with him instead (and it felt a whole lot better, too) and dropped the story for few minutes and motioned to my wife who was busy on another part of the lesson that we had forgotten to take attendance and that, as the little boy was now making known to me — well … the lady who gathered up the attendance sheets was now beginning to make her rounds to pick them up from the individual Sunday school teachers and she was obviously on her way to pick up ours, too!
Not only did we stop to take attendance, though, instead of rushing on with the story, like I had wanted to, a different question now came to my mind. “Children, how was your weekend? Who wants to tell me?!” Hands went flying! We spent five or ten minutes talking about what each one did — instead of what I wanted to do — and then prayed for each child, as well, after the sharing was done. THEN … we did the story. And the story was much more “soft spoken” this time — not that it always has to be soft spoken, but I noticed a definite difference in the way the story came out. It was “me” … it wasn’t this “Hollywood Superstar” trying to act some part in order to impress anyone.
Now, friends, it appears to me that this is the same thing that Hollywood knows nothing (or very little) about. In short, good acting doesn’t take the place of compassion and sensitivity to God’s voice. Which is why we need to be careful not to get ourselves “hooked on” or “intertwined with” Hollywood, because we’ll end up missing what God is saying to us as we get wrapped up in what they’re doing. Does this mean we should never watch a movie? No. But one has to be very careful when choosing what to watch. In closing, here are a few verses that you want to ponder in this regard. May the Lord bless you as you do!
“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.” (Matthew 6:24a) (In its context, this refers to money but applicable to any worldly thing, as well.)
“And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.” (1 John 2:17)
“They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them.” (1 John 4:5)
“Love not the world, neither the things [that are] in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” (1 John 2:15)
Hooked on Hollywood? Get hooked on Jesus instead.