Film Friday: The Founder

When milkshake machine salesman Ray comes across a small take away called McDonalds in 1950s St Bernardino, he can’t believe how quick, efficient and tasty the burger meal is…

Ray travels a lot, but all the other places he goes to provide water and waitress delivered food to your car. It takes a while to get the food and often the orders are delivered wrong. Not here. McDonalds is a whole new concept in fast food. Ray is blown away and joins the company with a vision to open McDonalds restaurants here there and everywhere. However, he and the McDonalds brothers begin to fall out as Ray starts to suggest ideas which go against the grain of the original restaurant.

The McDonalds brothers are totally dedicated to their initial vision of tasty food, served fast. And they won’t squander that in favour of making more bucks. Ray is a salesman and he does not feel such devotion. Life can sometimes seem fraught with offers of compromise. If you’re like me you’d love to be famous and successful, and yes, a bit richer. But compromise is not always the best way. How many celebrities and stars tell stories about their lives being damaged in some way as they race for success. A friend recently gave me a quote -‘Money can steal from you.’ It certainly steals from the McDonald brothers peace of mind. I often come back to a quote from mother Theresa. ‘We are not called to be successful, we are called to be faithful.’ I’m aware as I type this that it’s very easy to trot these things out, much harder to apply them. Jesus talked about our hearts being where our treasure is, I have to keep dragging mine back when I go chasing after the wrong things. It’s so easy to be shaped by the expectations we put on ourselves, and the pressures we feel from our culture. In these days of social media-ocrity I long to be ‘liked’ ‘friended’ ‘followed’ ‘retweeted’, to achieve something out there in the public domain. (Here I am posting this on Facebook and Twitter for goodness sake!) Thank God that he is kind, understanding and wanting to help us to keep on refocusing on what really matters. We see life through a muddy window right now, God sees it much more clearly. I’ll finish with that ancient joke about the rich man who wanted to be buried with his bars of gold. When he pitched up in heaven St Peter took one look at them and said, ‘Why’ve you brought paving stones?’ The kingdom of God flips our priorities on their head. God is with the broken, the poor, the grieving, the hurting, Jesus said. And he knew because he’d walked in their shoes.

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