When Rusty Griswold wants to give his troubled family a life-enhancing boost he decides to take them off on a road trip to Walley World, with the intention of riding the scary Velociraptor rollercoaster. But the rollercoaster turns out to be happening on the journey there as their trip turns into a dysfunctional nightmare.
Many film comedies centre around the problems of family life. Rusty sees himself as a weak father, intimidated by other dads, but any attempts he makes to be more cool, or more impressive, just go wrong. He longs to be funnier, tougher, wiser, but he is merely trying to copy other people. I can relate to those desires, I often feel as if I muddle through my days, sometimes intimidated by others who I perceive to be doing life a whole lot better than I am.
In Psalm 139 the writer proclaims himself to be ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’. A description that often gives me hope. We are uniquely designed, we are not supposed to be ‘aping’ other people, or longing to be someone else. It’s a big pressure though, much advertising is based on the principal that if we just do it like someone else, then we’ll be fine. When Jeremiah had a vision of God he was assured that, “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my spokesman to the world.” We may not be spokespeople to the world, but one of the recurring, reassuring messages in the Bible is that God knows us and understands us, and wants to help us, not to try and be like others, but to develop into the people he imagined we could be.