Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday by the Sea

"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all they ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." ~ Proverbs 3:5-6

It's a moving scene. A school of fish has just warned Dory to swim through the trench, not over it. And dear Dory, with her short-term memory loss, instantly forgets what it is they told her.

But then she and Marlin (the clown fish) approach the trench. It looks terrifying, dark and gloomy. As Marlin says: "It's got death written all over it."

But then a "little red flag" goes off in Dory's mind, and she tells Marlin she thinks they should swim through the trench. She tells him, "Trust me on this."

Marlin looks skeptical.

Dory clarifies, "Trust: it's what friends do."

A simple yet powerful statement. One which Marlin ignores, proceeding to distract Dory and get her to go over the trench.

For those of you who have seen Finding Nemo, you know what happens next. You remember the swarm of jellyfish above the trench, the race through the tentacles, and the scars on Dory's side. What seemed like a great decision to Marlin turned into a fearful ordeal.

How often do we experience the same? No, we most likely won't encounter a swarm of jellyfish, and we most likely won't get stung by tentacles. But we will suffer in other ways for not trusting our truest Friend of all.

Now, obviously this example from Finding Nemo cannot serve as a complete comparison, nor could anything or anyone in general compare to our God. However, I think there is a lot we can learn from Marlin's lesson.

Marlin is a fish that plays it safe. He's seen the evil in this life, having lost his wife and almost all of his children (except Nemo) to a hungry barracuda. And the last thing he wants is to put himself or Nemo into any dangerous situations. He chooses to rely on only himself, sure that he knows what's best and no one else can keep him or Nemo from harm. He refuses to trust the school teacher (Mr. Ray) in the beginning with Nemo's safety, and in this illustration he is refusing to trust Dory, no matter that she has shown herself to be a loyal, caring friend.

Our Lord has proven Himself to be the most loyal and the most caring friend we could ever hope for. When we choose to go our own way, believing we know what is best, we sin. We rebel against our God, and we fail to trust our Best Friend. And He bore the scars for our choices when He died on the cross.

Unlike Dory, Jesus died and rose again. He is God and He is omnipotent and completely righteous. He has offered us grace if we choose to believe in Him and the saving power of His sacrifice. And now through His mercy we can be close to Him; we can be friends with God.

Are you facing a trench right now that looks completely impassible? Trust God. If He guides you to that trench and you know He wants you to go through it, then believe that He knows best. Follow His lead and heed His words in Scripture.

Remember:
"Trust: it's what friends do."

"As for God, his way is perfect: the word of the Lord is tried: he is a buckler to all those that trust in him."
~ Psalm 18:30

(Finding Nemo pictures are from the Pixar website.)

2 comments:

Amanda said...

What a beautiful AND adorable post!! Finding Nemo is one of my favorite Pixar movies and seeing some pics from it here made me smile :) You know, you should really write for Our Daily Bread, because you can devotional with the best of them, my friend!! And, I think it’s amazing that you can recognize such a powerful truth in a movie like that and apply it to our Christian walk. Now, every time I see Nemo I’m gonna think of you and this wonderful post :D

I love what you said here: “Our Lord has proven Himself to be the most loyal and the most caring Friend we could ever hope for. When we choose to go our own way, believing we know what is best, we sin. We rebel against our God, and we fail to trust our Best Friend. And He bore the scars for our choices when He died on the cross.” WOW, it was that last line that really got me!

And, your last paragraph reminded me of Psalm 23:4- “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me.” Even in the trenches, as long as Jesus is there, there is no safer place to be :) Thank you so much for sharing this with us!!

Blessings,
Amanda Stanley

Amber S. said...

Amanda,

Thank you! :D Finding Nemo is such a wonderful movie, and it was fun posting about it. :)

And thank you for your kind words! You are so, so sweet, and I'm so glad that these devotional posts encourage you. I love sharing about God's goodness and truth!

I have been wanting to write this post for several days now, but I think it fits well with "Sundays by the Sea," so I'm glad I waited. :) I just remember walking along several days ago and thinking about trust when Dory's words from this movie hit me in a powerful way. The connections were so beautiful, and I loved the reminder that God is our Friend and that He knows what's best, even when we think the trench He knows we should go through just looks so scary. We don't even realize how truly scary the alternatives to trusting in Him really are! At least, I find that to often be the case with me.

And thinking about what Marlin's choice in the movie cost Dory, and how he trusted her later when looking at the scars on her side, I was reminded of how our choices hurt God. By remembering His scars He received for our sake, we should realize our need to trust in Him. Something I definitely need to remember!

Psalm 23:4 fits so well, and I'm so glad you shared it! I love what you say at the end of your comment: "Even in the trenches, as long as Jesus is there, there is no safer place to be." Amen!

I'm so thankful for your comment and your friendship in general. :D

~Amber