Film Friday: Rush

In the hot summer of 1976 two men kept climbing into cars, and chasing each other around a track. One was a party animal, with a hankering for the good life, the other was a single-minded, meticulous technician. Both were intent on winning. However when Niki Lauda and James Hunt came to race in the German Grand Prix at Nürburgring the weather was not hot and sunny…

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‘It helps if people like you…’ James says to Niki after winning the vote to race that day. However, as popular as James Hunt was, it was Lauder who saw things more clearly. The race ended in disaster with Niki Lauder hospitalised with terrible injuries. Popularity is, well… popular these days. We are all encouraged to get more followers, more friends, more ‘likes’ on social media. To look right so that others will want a piece of us. But Niki Lauder was not interested in that kind of thing. He saw things clearly and wasn’t afraid to go against the crowd.  One of the things I find difficult about being a Christian is that we are called to walk another road. One that sometimes goes against popular opinion. (Yikes! I like to be liked!) Jesus described it as a narrow way. (Matthew 7 v 13-14) A choice that would not necessarily prove a popular or common one. Yet he also described it as the way to life.  The poet Robert Frost once wrote of a road less travelled. Which is another way of looking at it. Two roads diverged in a wood and I, I took the one less travelled by and that has made all the difference.

Following that road less travelled is not always straightforward, we each of us have to wrestle with the options laid before us, sometimes on a daily basis. And as the writer James puts it in his biblical letter, we need to pray for wisdom so we don’t get thrown about in life’s storms, torn ragged by the tides of peer pressure and opinion. ‘If you don’t know what you’re doing,’ James tells us, ‘pray to the Father. He loves to help. You’ll get his help, and won’t be condescended to when you ask for it. Ask boldly, believingly, without a second thought.’ (James 1 V 5-8) It’s not always easy to be bold and full of faith in our praying, but just bringing it all to God is a great place to start. To ask for his help, and offer up our struggles and worries to him. ‘Don’t worry about anything,’ writes Paul, ‘instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers.’ (Philippians 4 v 6)

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