The manifestation of God! That is what the subject is for the synchroblog this month. I must admit I volunteered to do this blog early on and then forgot completely about it. It was not until my mother reminded me a few days ago that I started thinking about what I was going to write.
This is a tough subject. Often we think of the manifestation of God as being a sudden impact at a church service, usually during worship, where we feel weak in the knees and start talking in tongues. To be honest I always considered this weird and sometimes embarrassing. Sure it is fine to see my mother and father pray for God to come down and manifest himself on this earth. The unnerving part is when it actually happens. I remember seeing my mother wobbling back and forth while praying for someone. She was making some of the most awkward noises. She did a lot of, “Humin nah you lababwa tah tah tah tah” and “Puuusssshhhhh mmmmmmmmm yah nanah nah nah nah nah”. All I could do was roll my eyes and sort of act like I did not know her.
I am not trying to make fun of the manifestation of God. Nor am I trying to make fun of the act of speaking in tongues. Just for me, especially when I was younger, I did not understand it. I did not know why people got so consumed that they felt they needed to jibber a bunch of nonsense and go all twitchy on me. To this day I hardly ever feel like speaking in tongues or twitchy because of the presence of God.
One of the only times I ever feel enthralled, weak at the knees, or completely blown away both emotionally and physically, is after watching a exceptionally well crafted movie. But how can this have anything to do with the manifestation of God?
At first I did not think it had anything to do with God. I watched movies because I wanted to be entertained. Spiderman was thrilling because he could swing across buildings and beat up bad guys. I originally felt like I was gripped by film because that is what good film does, it grips you and takes you on a ride.
However, if you ask anyone of my friends, they will tell you that I am sort of obsessed with film. I am a student of film and have passions on making my own stories come to life on screen. Why so passionate you might ask? Well I think it is because film speaks to me in a way nothing else does. Good film moves me in profound ways. I began to realize that the impact that curtain films had on me, such as Dead Poets Society and Schindler’s List, had more to do with God then I originally thought.
God manifests himself to me through film. I have actually heard God speak through curtain movies. When watching Schindler’s List, God beckoned me to step up and do the kind of things I was seeing Schindler do in the movie. God actually showed up in the man Schindler. He made it clear that he can manifest through imperfection, that color and race didn’t matter to Him. God showed me that His love was and is for all. In fact the movie Schindler’s List spoke more to me then any sermon I had ever gone to.
The place God shows up the most for me is in the movies. I know this is hard to believe for some. Some might think that it is just an excuse to watch more film. I will admit that if my life only consisted of watching films it would be a very sad and unhealthy life. Even if God manifests himself to me through films, I can not just sit there getting high from film to film. It comes down to what the manifestation of God is for.
In my experience there is too many people seeking out God’s manifestation, then there are people who are trying to manifest to others. God is not a drug, He is not here to show up just so we can “Awe” at his beauty. God shows up to us so we can show Him to others. The manifestation of God, whether through a worship service or a movie, is meant to not only awe you but inspire you to act.
Before I ever knew it was Him, God was showing up in the movies. He has moved me in so many ways. He has brought me to tears through movies like Blood Diamond and Dead Poets Society. He has inspired me to act through movies like Braveheart and Schindler’s List. The manifestation of God has opened my eyes. The question we should now all be asking ourselves is, what do we do when God shows up?