Have yet to find a philosophical somewhere I am content to call home. The closest I get to a creed these days is a quote by John Green. "Whether I believe in God isn’t really relevant. I do believe however tenuously in Mercy" Due to a lot of personal reasons encountered along this journey, I have mostly stepped away from writing for now. Still, sometimes something stirs me and I need space to hash out my thoughts. So welcome to my little space along the journey.
Friday, January 20, 2006
"Waengogi Had a Son" - An "End of the Spear" Review
The story of the people of the Waodani is told in the new movie, "End of the Spear" by Every Tribe Entertainment. Their story is a message of fierce pride and selfish ambition being pierced by a small group of women committed to living out the love of Christ Jesus.
The Waodani history is as jagged edged as the spears and machetes that perpetuated an entire civilization in an unending circle of violence. Theirs was a culture so savage in their self-concern and so cyclical in their revenge that the resulting homicide rate was leading their tribe into extinction. Each family group exhibited it's ferocious strength through their cruelity to rival groups. The culture was on the brink of it's own detruction at the bitter end of one another's spear heads.
The horrible end to these people was not seen because 3 women who had lost those they loved dearly to these very spearheads walked into the jungle and brought the message of God's path. This movie seeks to illustrate how Rachel Saint, Marj Saint, and Elizabeth Elliott along with a tribe member named Dumaya brought a message that changed a family of killers, who had killed their families, into God's rich eternal family.
This movie hinges on the message that these ladies brought with them, "Waengogi (the creator God) had a son who was speared, but he did not spear back.” Now a culture of strength, retalition, and spite had been confronted with the a God who showed his strength through peace; a God who surrendered his right to retaliate because of his compassion; a God who met the spite of his enemies with forgiveness.
These themes are wonderfully illustrated as in time the tribe joins together to nuture their rivals in sickness. The clans accept each other, accept Christ and come to replace their culture of death by being a people of life. This process leads Mincaya and Steve Saint to the very island where this Waodani warrior had killed his father Nate Saint some 30 years earlier. The climax is fulfilling and intense as Mincaya is able to surrender his guilt and Saint is able to forgive his bitterness in the truth that Saint's father's life was not taken by this warrior, but was given as an offering to Almighty God.
The cross of Christ is ultimately a story of redemption, reconciliation, and life. This movie illustrates these themes masterfully. The Waodani people find redemption from their history of violence, Mincaya and Saint find reconciliation on an Amazon sandbar, and the missionaries, the families, and the Waodani share life as a followers of Waengogi's path. This is a path of love that leads to a whole new cycle seen generation to generation.
More details about the Missionary Martyrs, Steve Saint, Mincaya, and all the Waodoni people can be learned by watching the documentary Beyond The Gates of Splendor.
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Hey Kevin -
Did you go to the Tony Jones thing last night? I was disappointed I couldn't make it at the last minute. Something came up that I had to do....
Maybe you'll be out for a regular up/rooted meeting sometime?
As for the movie, our small group is hoping to go see it together this week. Thanks for the post!
Sid F. gave me your web address after I sent website info and links on End of the Spear to a bunch of people. We saw it yesterday; I came away weak from the intensity and thankful for the commitment of all and for God's victory after much sorrow. Thanks for clarifying at least a couple confusions I had. I've had 2 friends respond that Through Gates of Splendor was what encouraged them to go into missions.
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