5 Reasons Why I Liked A Matter of Faith

After feeling disappointed by God’s Not Dead, I’m happy to say that the latest film in what appears to be a long line of Christian/Bible-based films this year did not disappoint.  A Matter of Faith was a film that surprised me in a good way.  Seeing the trailer for this movie did not show much promise, and felt like it was just trying to mimic God’s Not Dead.  Thankfully, this didn’t turn out to be the case.  I went to see it with absolutely no expectations and I found myself enjoying it.  Below are five reasons why I felt this film was good.  As a forewarning, there are major spoilers to follow, so if you haven’t seen this movie and you want to, then I recommend you wait.

To start off, the plot of the movie is a girl named Rachael who graduates high school and is heading off to college to study biology.  Her biology class is taught by Professor Kaman, who teaches evolution as fact (which is way more believable than a philosophy professor making the students write ‘God is dead’ for a grade).  Because of this, Rachael begins to be influenced by her professor’s teachings, which concerns her father.  As a result, her father ends up challenging the professor in a famous debate: Evolution vs. Creationism.  Now to list why I felt this film was good:

1.  This film has a much more straightforward, easy-to-follow storyline that doesn’t try to add in a bunch of subplots and extra side messages that many other Christian films attempt to do.  The central lesson of this movie all comes down to this: Believing in a god that created the universe and choosing to have a relationship with Jesus Christ doesn’t result in a matter of ‘fact’, it results in a matter of faith, hence the movie title.  It all comes down to what we choose to believe.  Former Professor Portland in the movie spoke the truth when he said that we can argue back and forth with each other about how our beliefs in the origin of the world are logical, but it won’t change anything.  People make the decision to turn to Christ through love, not logic.  The logic of an intelligent designer is already around them, they just choose not to accept it.  It’s the actions of Christians that win them over and it’s the love Christians show the others that gives us hope that others will change their minds about what they believe.  Professor Portland displayed this by apologizing to Kaman for the bitterness he had towards him and he forgave Kaman for firing him from the school.  That was a powerful moment that made me nod in approval in the theater.

2.  Like I said above, this film doesn’t try to be something so big that it feels too overwhelming.  This film feels much more focused and seems to know exactly what it wants to be at the end of the day.  There’s also no Newsboys and Duck Dynasty to find here (thank God).  In fact, there’s no mainstream Christian music in this film at all until the very end, but at that point, it almost felt fitting and was a welcome way to start rolling the credits.  This film felt raw and honest, and I felt it had a little something for both sides of the issue.  Almost all of the characters in this film played a big part in the story and contributed well.  This felt more like a real movie that knew what it was doing instead of trying to be a Christian propaganda piece.

3.  I really liked the fact that the Christians here weren’t portrayed as perfect people.  Rachael was the character that Josh Wheaton from God’s Not Dead should have been.  Rachael was conflicted, her faith was challenged, and she made choices that she would regret.  I think a lot of Christian parents can relate to the fear of seeing their children off to college.  Will their kids continue to hold on tight to their faith?  Will they make the right decisions now that they don’t have their parents’ supervision?  This movie takes a good look at that, without going through all the trouble of adding all the aspects such as alcohol, drugs, and sex to add more needless drama.  Cracking eggs over a guy’s head promising him a hundred bucks and then cheating him from it, which sparked a trend that caused Rachael to get into an unhealthy relationship, was a decent way to go.

4.  Making the professor’s ultimate decision at the end somewhat ambiguous was an excellent move on the writers’ part.  The movie leaves it to the viewer’s imagination to wonder what the professor chooses to believe.  I know that a lot of Christians would want to see a clear conclusion where the unbeliever chooses Christ and we can all rejoice for the character, but why not have a little bit of mystery?  The important thing is that the debate got the professor thinking.  He’s at least rethinking what he believes.  His last scene in the movie where he’s looking deep in thought at the stuffed chicken was a great way for his character arc to end.  Is anybody familiar with the fictional story An Imperial Affliction from The Fault in Our Stars?  I think it’s about as powerful as that.

5.  Finally, it’s important to mention that this movie also technically bashes the Evolution/Creation debate.  Arguing with someone who isn’t a Christian is, at the end of the day, a horrible waste of time.  It’s perfectly understandable that we want others to believe what we believe because, to us, it’s fulfilling and infuses hope in our lives.  I believe that some of us assume that anyone who isn’t a Christian has a miserable, depressing life with no positive aspects to go around.  At the end of the day, God changes their minds, not us.  God leads people to Him.  We’re the ones who plant the seeds, and then we’re supposed to step back and allow God to work within the lives of those we’ve affected.  We can’t force our doctrine down other people’s throats just like others shouldn’t force their doctrine down our throats.  How is that treating each other with love and respect?  We’re supposed to show love to them, not ridicule them for what they believe.

That all being said, this film was in no way perfect.  The music for the first twenty minutes seemed to be the same fifteen-second track on a loop, and some of the dialogue wasn’t very well written.  When Professor Portland does his speech near the end of the film, I felt like I was watching a video sermon instead of an actual movie.  Thankfully, the speech was very well written and was one of the key components for the way I felt about this film, so I’m not really going to bash it.  I recommend this film for both Christians and non-Christians because it contains a message that I think both sides desperately need to hear.  It puts a lot of those Evolution/Creation debates to shame, and teaches us something valuable.  Believing in God isn’t a matter of fact, it’s a matter of faith.

10 Reasons Why I Disliked God’s Not Dead

I said I would do this, and now I’m doing it.  Below is a list of ten reasons why I didn’t like God’s Not Dead.  I would like to point out that when I started watching the film, I was willing to be open-minded and give this a chance.  Unfortunately, I was disappointed by the film, and despite the encouragement I’ve gotten to show this film to people who are not Christians, I will not be doing that.  So here it goes:
1. To start off, no philosophy professor whether atheist or not, would basically force his students to write ‘God is dead’ on a paper and get graded for it.  I know this from hearing the opinions of other atheist professors.  The true fact is that if an atheist professor was caught doing this, the university would fire him, because his actions were a violation against the First Amendment which clearly states this: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.  Regardless of your opinions or your point of view about how the First Amendment is being treated today, it still stands and professors would be fired for doing something like this.  Professors, atheist or not, know this, therefor would never dare to do this.  It is true that atheist professors have challenged an individual’s faith in the classroom, but have not done it in any way this extreme.
2. Which actually leads to my problem with Professor Radisson himself.  Not only did he do something that was against our rights as American people, but he was also portrayed as someone who was selfish, arrogant, and even verbally abusive.  If having me write ‘God is dead’ in the classroom wasn’t enough to make me report him, stopping me in the hallway by putting a rough hand on my shoulder and turning me around to face him and then tell me that he is god in the classroom, I would definitely report him then.  I can’t for the life of me see how he can get away with this.  Also, if Professor Radisson truly hated God and disliked Christians, why does he have a Christian girlfriend?
3. A short note on Radisson’s Christian girlfriend.  I can’t think of any reason why a Christian girl would choose to live with an atheist.  There’s also the fact that the two of them are living together before marriage, which is something Christians believe is wrong.  This is a girl who has obviously made some pretty stupid decisions.  It is true that the girlfriend finally decided to abandon Radisson because he wasn’t right for her, but it’s hard to feel sympathy for her, because she made really stupid choices in the first place that, in my opinion, puts Christians in a bad light.
4. I should probably mention the subplots and other characters right now.  If this film is really supposed to be about a college student challenging his professor’s stance, why do we have subplots of a Muslim girl and a girl with cancer?  These subplots added absolutely nothing to the plot.  If they were in the same class as Josh Wheaton, and were affected by the debates, that would’ve been something a little more worthwhile to see.  But no. Neither characters cross paths with each other or Josh or the professor or the pastor or anyone.  The pastor even felt shoehorned in so that he could affect some of the other storylines throughout the film.  Unfortunately, I’m given no reason to care for him or his welfare.  He’s there to be like a human ‘God’, which would’ve been okay if this film was all about him.  I lost complete respect for him when he got angry at the car salesman and said ‘lying to an ordained minister is even worse’.  That’s treating other people with love.  I also hated how the cancer girl’s boyfriend brushed off her illness like it was an inconvenience by saying, and I quote “couldn’t this have waited until tomorrow?”.
5. Which would bring me now to the overall view of Christians and non-Christians in this film.  This movie made it very clear that it thinks Christians are perfect, flawless, and all-knowing, while non-Christians (especially atheists) are miserable, nasty, heartless, discriminating people. I was actually offended by this portrayal of atheists even though I’m not an atheist myself.  The Bible specifically says that we’re supposed to treat all people regardless of their beliefs with love and kindness.  America strives to create a sense of equality between people regardless of their background, culture, religion etc.  I don’t think Christians are helping that by viewing atheists in their films like this.  In this movie, every atheist is a terrible person that mocks and hates Christians.  I’ve met people who aren’t Christians that respect Christians even if they have different beliefs.  In fact, I’ve gotten along very well with people who are different.
6. I admire the idea that Josh Wheaton wants to stand up for his own faith, especially in a place that’s hostile towards it, but it just didn’t work here.  Aside from the bad start of the conflict where Radisson has his students write ‘God is dead’ for a grade,  Josh has been dating the same girl for six years.  If he was that committed to God and that passionate about Him, he should’ve realized that this particular girl was not the right one for him quite a long while ago. In fact, I noticed there were three breakups in this film.  That’s just not creative from a storytelling standpoint.  Romantic relationships are put in a negative light here, because it views your significant other as someone who is an obstacle in your path towards your goals and will abandon you at the first sign of something they don’t like about you.  Josh’s girlfriend abandons him at the first sign of him standing up for his faith.  I understand that by doing something that sounds outrageous or crazy, it means there will be some obstacles in the way, and some things in your life you’re going to have to get rid of, but this was a bad example to use for reasons which I just mentioned.
7. During the debates between Josh and Professor Radisson, while there were some interesting and even valid comparisons between philosophers and what the Bible says, I think the most significant problem about this debate was how one-sided it was.  Josh tried to push the idea that God’s not dead because the Bible says so, and the Professor tried to push the idea that God is dead and philosophy is true because of what certain philosophers said.  In this case, I’m especially embarrassed for Josh because he says that everything about God is true because the Bible says so.  No one will accept that idea.  To people who aren’t Christians, the Bible is just a well-written book that is centered around a religious belief.  If you’re going to say that something is true because the Bible says so, you have to look deeper and explain how what is said in the Bible is true, and there are many valid sources that can help you.  Josh didn’t really look into any of these kinds of things.
8. Professor Radisson decides he’s an atheist because of a tragic thing that happened in his past.  So technically it’s not that he doesn’t believe in God, it’s because he’s angry at God, so he chooses not to believe in Him.  This is not the norm for atheists.  Atheists are people who decides that God doesn’t exist and never has, period.  End of story.  Instead, this is just a man who witnessed a death in the family, gets angry at God and hates Him, and decides to claim that God is not real.  In the movie Camp, which is admittedly a much more enjoyable film about spiritual redemption than this, the main character decided he didn’t want to talk to God anymore because of a death in the family when he was young.  He wasn’t a proclaimed atheist though.  If everyone who experienced a death in the family or another tragic event got angry at God for allowing it to happen, there would be way more atheists today.  I do however have to give the writers credit when Radisson confesses he’s angry at God and Josh says ‘how could you hate something that doesn’t exist?’  That was a powerful line, and one of the best comebacks I’ve heard with great delivery too.  However, it also exposes how off of a portrayal Radisson’s character is if he’s supposed to be an atheist.
9. Unfortunately, after that great comeback, the movie just crumbles apart.  I felt like the movie turned into a propaganda piece for Newsboys and Duck Dynasty, and a final middle finger to atheists.  I’m really telling the truth when I say that my heart was just torn to pieces by this ending.  When Radisson decides to go to the Newsboys concert to find his ex (because somehow he knew she’d be there) and apologize to her for everything, he’s hit by a car and lies on the street dying.  When the pastor just happens to be passing by (I know this was probably God’s timing), instead of calling 911 or trying to do everything he can to save the professor, he makes Radisson say the Lord’s Prayer, because apparently that’s the only way to have salvation, and allows him to die a painful, miserable death.  This tore me apart so much.  The pastor did nothing to try and save the professor’s physical life, but was instead for some reason more concerned for his spiritual fate.  Getting the professor to believe in God felt forced since he was in a very vulnerable, desperate position.  If I was in the pastor’s position, I would’ve called 911 and made sure he was lifted out of the street.  It pained me so much that the professor never did get to find his ex and apologize.  I understand that not all movies have to have a happy ending like that, but this was a terrible way to go.
10. Finally, right after the Professor’s death, the film pulls us into a Newsboys concert as if that death doesn’t matter at all, and the last ten minutes feels like a music video advertising Newsboys.  Josh Wheaton and the other students are completely oblivious to the fact that their philosophy professor just died.  During the end credits, I was thinking about how bad the students will probably feel once they find out.
Again, I was feeling heartbroken by it all, and I didn’t feel enthusiastic like the film apparently wanted me to be.  I hate how they portrayed non-Christians and atheists in this film.  It’s as if the writers have never actually met any atheists.  All the portrayals are bad stereotypes, and makes us think that everyone is out to get us.  We should be treating everyone regardless of their backgrounds with love and acceptance, and this film really doesn’t show that.  It treats Christianity like its a fan club where everyone is right and everyone else is wrong.  I think this movie would drive non-Christians even further away from the possibility of believing in God.  The movie Camp starring Michael Mattera was much more inspiring, subtle, and moving as a story of a man finding spiritual redemption.  The Way starring Martin Sheen, though it wasn’t technically a Christian film, had better spiritual undertones than this movie.  I’m sorry I can’t say a lot of good things about this movie.  When I saw the previews for this movie, I was dreading it, but when I went to see it at youth group, I was driven to be open-minded and give it a chance.  I was shocked by this film in a bad way.  At the end of the day, I do not recommend this movie.

Why the Twilight Series Is Terrible: Horrible Picture of Love

I just recently had the misfortune of watching the Twilight movie series.  It took a lot of snack-eating and joke-cracking to survive through it, but I did.  To be honest, I can’t remember what my first thought was when I popped in the first Twilight film.  I can’t remember if I knew I was about to watch a monstrosity or if I was actually willing to be open-minded.  Regardless, I ended up hating all these films.  In order to keep this article short however, I’m just going to discuss the biggest problem about this series: the way romance/love is pictured.

Apart from the terrible acting (Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson makes Hayden Christensen seem like an award-winning actor), and the bad CGI (CGI baby?? Really???), and the poor storytelling, this movie paints a bad picture of romance.

The first film suffers from typical Hollywood crap where Bella and Edward Cullen fall in love with each other simply because of looks.  There is absolutely no good chemistry between them.  Even the relationship between Kili and Tauriel from Desolation of Smaug had more chemistry then this one does.  Edward admits to Bella that he watches her when she sleeps at night.  You’re kidding right?  And Bella doesn’t do the sensible thing and screams at Edward to get out and never talk to her again.  She actually becomes more attracted to him because ‘he cares so much for her protection’.  This comes to one of the biggest issues.  Edward is one of the creepiest boys known to mankind.  He lustfully stares at Bella when she sits next to him in class because he wants her blood.  He pops up in Bella’s bedroom because he wants to see her.  This isn’t good material for a soulmate.  This is just downright creepy.

In the second movie, New Moon, Bella attempts to commit suicide when Edward goes away.  In the third film, Eclipse, Bella continues to nag Edward to turn her into a vampire so that they can live together forever.  It’s all she cares about and it’s almost all she talks about.  And then to make matters worse, Bella keeps trying to get Edward to have sex with her.  So is this all that romance is about?  Finding a cute person that he/she thinks is cute and pursue sex with that person?  However, I do have to give the movie credit when Edward insists that he wants to wait to have sex until they’re married, which is exactly what happens.  This is something rarely found in Hollywood films, and I have to give the movie credit for that.  Unfortunately, this is dragged down once Bella and Edward are married.  Their honeymoon is one of the worst portrayals of romance I’ve ever seen.  Every night during their honeymoon, Bella seduces Edward, and during the day they just silently play chess.  Best.  Couple.  Ever.  I was being sarcastic of course, this is not a great picture of married love.  Edward and Bella never talk about anything that can allow their relationship to grow.  It’s all about sex and being together.  It’s a relationship that’s just about the two of them being sexually pleased.

So then I guess it comes down to the question: What do believe is the right picture of romance and marriage?  Love for another person grows through being friends first.  The two people have many things in common, they have a lot to talk about, and they spend a lot of quality time together.  My dad tells me that by marrying the one you love, you’re also marrying your best friend.  The one you marry should be your best friend.  The two people should have very similar beliefs, a lot in common, and similar goals.  For Christians reading this, you and the other person marry because you know that God has brought you two together.  For people reading this who are not Christians, though Christians should take this into account too, you marry the one you love because you are best friends who treat each other with respect and honor, you share so much in common, and you would be more than willing to live together with that person for the rest of your life.  And it’s about loving each other for the beauty within, not the outward appearance.

NOTE: Next week sometime, I’ll have a review of God’s Not Dead released, and have a review of Noah out the week after that.

 

The Trap of Loneliness Part 2

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The idea of continuing on writing what I’ve written before is not exactly something I do often, but recent developments have compelled me to write more on the subject of loneliness.  I feel that I had only scratched the surface on the subject in my last post.

Almost two weeks ago, I was beginning to realize why my loneliness was not getting much better and possibly why I wasn’t finding new friends or new people around my age that I can relate to.  I drew a conclusion, and the following reasons are the most likely reasons why God doesn’t seem to be answering my prayers on my loneliness or wanting a new friend.

1) My relationship with God isn’t strong enough.  If I have a strong relationship with God, my relationships with other people will also grow stronger.  Fellowship and deep intimacy with God strengthens human relationships.  A couple days ago, I was thinking on the wrong idea that God only cared about me having a relationship with me and excluding all other relationships as irrelevant.  Obviously I was dead wrong and I know that.  God really wants us to have fellowship and relationships with each other, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.  It’s just that He wants our number-one priority, above all else, to be having a relationship with Him.  Devoting time to Him and having a strong relationship with Him will improve our relationships with other people.

2) My relationship with my family isn’t strong enough.  If I can’t have a good relationship with the people I see every single day, then how can I be trusted with having relationships with other people outside of my family?  The sad truth is that I would only push those people away, even if I’m not exactly trying to do that.  In conclusion, if you can’t be trusted with the people closest to you, then you can’t be trusted with new people.  I would hate to push new people away.

In truth, I’ve been feeling better lately as far as my loneliness goes.  I’m not even entirely sure why.  Maybe after walking around my church thinking about all the things I listed above, it allowed me to feel better because I knew what I had to do first if God was going to answer my prayers and I’ve been working on that.  God answers prayers if He believes we’re ready to handle the responsibilities that come with the requests.  If you’re feeling lonely and you wish for more company, I highly suggest you follow the steps I listed.  If your relationship with God isn’t as deep or as intimate as it can be, then it’s very likely that that’s why God isn’t answering your prayers to bless you with new friends.  He wants you to have a relationship with Him that’s deeper and stronger and more intimate than any relationship with a human can fulfill.

The Trap of Loneliness

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In the past few weeks, I’ve been struggling with feelings of loneliness, and the more I think about how lonely I feel, the worse it gets.  By feeling really lonely in the past few weeks, I’ve also grown more anti-social, which is odd because if I want to meet new people and NOT be lonely, why would I make myself even MORE isolated?

The feeling of loneliness, especially when you allow it to grow more and more over time, is one of the worst experiences you can ever go through.  I did some research into the symptoms of loneliness today.  Loneliness can cause isolation, depression, the relationships you DO have with other people can falter and slip, and sometimes loneliness can even cause (cough) sexual fantasies.

Why do these things happen when we feel extremely lonely?  As humans, we constantly desire intimacy with other people, whether its social or physical touch.  We want other people to care about us and be there for us when we need or want them.  Think about the guy from Cast Away.  After being on that island for a really long time with nobody around, he goes crazy and starts talking to a volleyball.  Because of that constant desire for intimacy, when we don’t get it, we become lonely and depressed and it takes a toll on us.  Our mind runs wild and no matter what we try to do to make ourselves happy, whether it’s by constantly entertaining ourselves with materialism or going out and doing stupid things, it doesn’t work.

There are cures to loneliness, and even though they may not work like magic immediately after doing it, as long as you’re consistent, the loneliness will fade eventually over time.  If you’re extremely lonely for a long period of time, it usually means something.  As a Christian, it probably means your relationship with God isn’t as deep or intimate as it should be, or you’re not spending enough time with Him.  God has the power to satisfy your desire for intimacy, and that’s through the intimacy of His presence.  When you spend time with Him, talk to Him like He’s another person in the room talking to you.  The conversations may feel one-sided because God doesn’t talk to you like a regular person, but He will still communicate with you if you listen, and you’ll know when He’s speaking to you when He does.  You can even ask God to help you and ask Him if He can lead you to new friends.  After all, God says “ask and you shall receive”.

Extreme loneliness can happen because of a lack of friends or lack of people you know you can turn to and talk to.  If this is the problem, one of the best things to do is to go out more.  Seek out people at your church or another public place you visit often and try to strike up conversations with them and establish relationships.  It never hurts to try, even with people who don’t look promising to you at first.  As they say, there’s more to the person than meets the eye.  Whatever you do, make sure you choose your options wisely and move to do these things quickly, because the longer you dwell within your feelings of loneliness, the worse things will get from there.

One Reason I Love to be a Fanboy

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As I write this article, I’m listening to geeky music from a web show. Just wanted to let you guys know.

This article isn’t just for fanboys and fangirls, anyone can read this because I have some interesting stuff to say about being a fanboy. Anyone who knows me personally knows pretty well that I’m a geek, fanboy, nerd, whatever. Geeks and fanboys/girls love stuff that other people outside that circle would think is a terrible waste of time and that those geeks should go outside and jog. I understand how they feel, but I think it’s time for me to explain why being a fanboy can actually be a good thing.

We all know that the world is full of pain, suffering, tragedy, and even hate. It’s a world broken because of man’s sin shortly after the beginning. But even in this world, love, light, and hope exists.  No fanboy or fangirl I’ve known or heard about has been obsessed with predicting the end of the world or have tried scaring other people with predictions of terror and hopelessness.  Some Christians, unfortunately, do this despite everything the Bible says about God having plans for us that will give us a hope and a future.

So, one of the biggest reasons why I love to be a fanboy is because of that feeling of joy and positivity that being a fanboy brings. I get excited about geek-related stuff and it makes me happy if I’m feeling rather down. I already wrote an article about the fan community (you can read it here), and even though fans have their own varying opinions, there’s always something that they agree on.  Even if two Star Wars fans have different opinions on what they like about Star Wars, it doesn’t change the fact they both love Star Wars, so they’ll always find something in common.  Things like Star Wars and Lord of the Rings and Doctor Who have brought many people together at conventions and Comic-Con which leads to new friends, sometimes even marriage!  I think that’s a great thing about geek-related stuff.  I find comfort in communicating with other geeks and fans because we love to talk about fun, positive things, not gloomy, scary things.  We also anticipate exciting things to come within the fan community too.  Sure stuff like Star Wars and Marvel are not very important things in our lives, but they are great ways to get our minds off of the negative aspects of our lives to make us feel relaxed and happy.

One other thing I should probably add is that fans and geeks highly anticipate stuff and get excited over it because they will be treated to new stories featuring heroes that they root for, and the villains that they love to hate.  It’s better to get excited over the next Star Wars film (something we’ll be getting in 2015) than it is to fret over when the end of the world comes, which nobody but God knows anyway, and feel hopeless about life.  Stuff like Star Wars is an excellent form of escapism.  Many fanboys and fangirls are inspired to write stories of their own because of the things they love.  Yes, it normally starts with fanfiction, but I’ve seen fans who eventually start writing their own original material because they’re inspired, through the stuff they love, to create their own worlds, heroes, and villains, and tell a good story.

In conclusion, I say to the people who are NOT fans or geeks, don’t ridicule geeks for the things they love.  Instead, be happy for them that they have things that they love and that they make them happy.  It’s better for them to love that stuff than it is to feel depressed or worried all the time.  After all, Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”.

On the Subject of Moms

This isn’t exactly the kind of blog articles I write, but today I felt compelled to write this. Soooooo, here we go.

As a young child, you constantly rely on your mom. You trust her with all of your heart, and you count on her to fulfill all of your needs. You trust her completely because you’ve been with her all of your life, and she’s technically one of the first people, besides your dad, that you know. I think the dad is considered a fun “playmate” to the child while the mother is the caretaker. I have no proof of that, it’s just my own speculation. The dad is at work most of the day while the mother stays home and takes care of the child, so that’s just the concept I drew upon.

Anyway, once the child grows into a teenager, an odd feeling of stubbornness and selfishness seems to grow along with him and he and the mom tend to have moments of trouble between each other. It’s perplexing that a teen would take his anger out on his mom. What was once a very stable, peaceful relationship becomes kind of heated and unstable, and the most intriguing thing is is that the mom normally isn’t the one who did anything wrong. The teen takes his anger out on her because she loves him unconditionally and seems to have bigger heaps of mercy for him than the dad, because a teen won’t talk to his dad the way that he talks to his mom. I know from personal experience that if I talked to my dad the way I talked to my mom out of anger, well, that would mean I’m screwed.

Let me tell you a little bit about my own mom. My own mom was there for me through all of my school years, and though I finished high school, there’s so much that I have to thank my mom for because she bent over backwards to make sure that I succeeded. The saddest thing is that I don’t feel like I recognized how vastly important mom’s role was in me finishing high school. When I wanted someone to talk to, she was always there willing to listen and still is. She would drive me to youth group every week and made sure that I got there in time, she made sure I had everything I needed to complete school and everything I needed to simply live well. I remember when there were times I would give my mom a hard time or act ungrateful and she would tell me I have it “pretty well” where I’m at. I feel that the phrase “pretty well” is an understatement. My parents have worked hard to make sure that I live in the best household possible. Honestly, it’s like when Jesus died on the cross for everybody, I can’t find the right words or comprehend just how much I really owe Jesus and my parents for everything they’ve done. God uses parents to raise the next generation, so it’s the parents’ responsibility to raise their children in the best way possible, and I know that my own parents have worked so hard to do just that. It’s truly one of the greatest examples of love that the world can display.

If you the reader are still living with your parents and you’re having a difficult time getting along with them, think about everything they had, have, and will do for you. It’s incredible mercy and love that pushes your parents to do everything they can for you, so with that in mind, all they want is for you to respect them and be grateful for them in return. They want to know that they didn’t fail as parents. Even if your parents are doing everything they can, and if they haven’t been treating you right, continue to treat them with respect. The Bible doesn’t say “honor your father and mother if they’re treating you right”, it very simply says “honor your father and mother”.

Agents Of S.H.I.E.L.D Season 1 Episode 12 ‘Seeds’ Review

MING-NA WEN, CLARK GREGG

Hello all! I decided after a long while of not writing reviews for TV shows (I reviewed all the episodes of the third season of Star Wars The Clone Wars) it would be cool to come back and do it again, this time with Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. This week, I saw Episode 12 “Seeds”, which was about our fellow team of agents investigating strange happenings at a SHIELD academy. It was really interesting to see an academy where new recruits for SHIELD are being trained. In this episode, we are introduced to Donnie Gill, who will inevitably become Blizzard later on. This was an interesting move considering that this show hasn’t been very heavy on real Marvel characters from the comic books or other media. We see a foreshadowing of Graviton way back in Episode 3, but other than that, that’s pretty much been it. Graviton and Blizzard are probably not Marvel villains that the fans would go crazy for, but it’s nice to see the show care to pay attention to that stuff anyway since those characters still have connections with the Marvel universe.
At this point in this show, I’ve come to accept the characters given to us and not complain that we haven’t even had a CAMEO of an Avenger. This show is about a team of agents within S.H.I.E.L.D, not the Avengers, and I’ve come to accept that. We get to see the Avengers in a much cooler way anyway: awesome MOVIES. Fitz and Simmons are a real delight to watch, particularly in this episode, and Coulson is always a great presence onscreen. The pacing of this episode was great, and the storyline was entertaining, but any Marvel comic book fans among the audience would know right away that the person behind the strange ice incidents in the academy is Donnie Gill, since he is, after all, Blizzard.
It was really cool to learn more about Skye’s backstory, and it makes us really wonder what kind of mysterious powers she has, or what exactly she is. I’m looking forward to learning more about her, which is surprising considering the fact that she’s my least favorite character on this show, LITERALLY THE WORST. I’m also excited to see more of Ian Quinn’s involvement with the Clairvoyant and Centipede, which is very obviously at this point a lurking shadow within this show. It’s a recurring foe that we actually know very little about right now. So far we’ve got the Clairvoyant, Blizzard, Graviton, Ian, and possibly a brainwashed Mike Peterson. Do I see a supervillain team on the rise?
In conclusion, this was a really fun episode. I can’t wait for Stan Lee to step in next time. That should be really interesting. If the show continues to produce more episodes like this, we may get to see a redemption for this series. Here’s to a bright future!

**** (4 being the highest rating)