My friend says, "It's sort of like shopping only everything is FREE." It has been a long time since I sat and watched a DVD that I borrowed from the library, but I wasn't feeling well tonight and decided to stay home and relax. Watching a movie was the perfect way to do just that.
The DVD was a Canadian film called Saint Ralph. Set in 1953 and 1954 in Hamilton, Ontario, Saint Ralph is about a 14-year-old Catholic schoolboy named Ralph Walker.
Ralph's father is dead, and his mother Emma is gravely ill. Told it will take a miracle to bring his mother out of her coma, Ralph is in search of one. When Father Hibbert cracks a joke about the cross-country team training for the Boston Marathon, Ralph misunderstands and takes him seriously. The priest tries to correct Ralph's misperception by saying, "Anyone on this team winning the Boston Marathon would be a miracle to match the loaves and fishes." That's all Ralph needs to hear. He figures if he can win Boston, he'll have the miracle necessary to wake his mother.Ralph learned in Father Hibbert's religion class that there are three criteria to making a miracle: faith, purity and prayer.
And Ralph is determined to work on all three.
No, this is not a true story. And I'm not mentioning it so that you run out and rent this low budget Canadian film. In fact, I'm not even recommending it. It is probably not worth the cost of the rental.
But watching this movie did make me think about the combination of faith, purity and prayer.
Why does it seem like we can be strong in one of those areas, or perhaps even two. But often we fall short of seeing all three at the top of their game. Even the disciples ran into this problem:
Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to them, "Sit here while I go over there and pray." He took Peter and the two sons of Zebedee along with him, and he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, "My soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me."Sheesh! The Lord of heaven and earth, who is about to be crucified for the sins of the world, asks you to keep an eye out - and you can't even keep an eye OPEN!
Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, "My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will."
Then he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping!
"Could you men not keep watch with me for one hour?" he asked Peter. "Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak."Watch. And Pray. "Set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity." [1 Timothy 4:12]