As we educate our children, it can be pretty easy to just expose them to information—you know, facts and figures. No matter what curriculum you use, whether it is workbooks, online classes, or co-op instruction, there are plenty of ways to get information into our students’ heads.
But inspiring them to think beyond that information can sometimes be a challenge. We want to help them identify their strengths and identify what their passions are as they determine what occupation God has for them in life. And we want to help them gain a purpose in why they are doing whatever they are doing. As Christians, that passion for serving the Lord in all we do and bringing Him glory is one of the most critical driving forces we can help to instill in them.
Well, on Friday, September 16th, a new feature film is coming out that helps us do just that.
Hillsong – Let Hope Rise is an engaging, documentary-style film that explores the development and popularity of an Australia-based band. This group of folks began singing in their local church, wrote worship songs, and then watched as God blessed their efforts exponentially so that today over 50 million people all over the world sing their songs each Sunday. You can watch the trailer here.
As I watched their story unfold, I was first touched by the humility of these artists. They are regular people, just like you and me (and your teens). They are all talented musicians in their own rights, and have a passion for sharing the love of Jesus with those around them. After just performing at a large venue, one of them said, “Can you believe we just played for so many people?” He was so excited and dumbfounded that they were where they were. I smiled in excitement along with him.
Today, Hillsong performs in venues all over the world. The film ushers you back stage with them as they prepare before shows and then brings you front and center during several of their concerts. And through it all you can see that these guys aren’t about being in the limelight. Their humility is evident.
“We’re the biggest band that no one’s ever heard of.”
You travel with them from their simple beginnings up to their extreme popularity today. It is very exciting and engaging to “tour” with them. But this is where it gets interesting. You go into their homes and meet their families. I was surprised to see that these young parents don’t live in mansions or have excessive lifestyles. In fact, they live quite modestly. Most of them are married, and when they go on tour, they have to leave their wives and children behind for weeks at a time. Why do they do this, then? It definitely isn’t for fortune and fame. I mean, though you may have heard of this awesome group, can you name any of the specific performers? I have sung several of their songs for years, and I couldn’t do it. But as I “met” each one, I was touched by how they each had a desire—you might even say a calling—to use their talents to share the love of the Lord with others.
We get to see some of their wives and hear from them; and if you know me, you know that this really touched me. These ladies are holding down the fort at home. During tours, they are with their children, doing this parenting thing alone. But they see it as their ministry, too. They are raising a new generation of believers. They see what they do as a vital work. And they are enabling their husbands to go out and proclaim a message that brings hope and encouragement to many.
We always are looking for mentors and role models for our kids. This movie highlights how some humble individuals are sincerely working to do what they feel God has called them to do.
“God’s not looking for us to do everything, but He wants us to do something.” He is doing great things, brings those things before us, and then desires us to jump into His plans for us…not our plans for us.
These talented folks are using their God-given skills to accomplish what He has called them to do. And they don’t stop there. They do more than just stand on the stage and perform. They spend much of their resources and time putting feet to those words they sing. I won’t tell you all the details, you need to watch it for yourself, but I can tell you that it is truly refreshing to see people who do more than just sit in the limelight only talking about helping people.
Add to that the seriousness with which they approach their work. They don’t just write songs that are fun to sing. They feel a responsibility to write words that are in agreement with what the Bible teaches so that it brings glory to God.
This family-friendly movie is one that you can watch with all your children and then get those conversations going. Talk with them about what strengths God has given them. If they don’t yet know, help them to see that, just like these ordinary people, God uses us for His extraordinary purposes. Help them to explore how their interests can be used for a greater purpose than just earning money. Give them a vision.
That’s what we want, isn’t it? We may not be able to see all that God has ahead of us. But we know He has a plan. He has had one for each of us before time began. This movie gives you the opportunity to talk about these things as you come alongside your children each day.
I love one of the quotes that a group member shared – and it isn’t word-for-word, but it went something like this:
Abel Tasman discovered New Zealand and other Polynesian islands. But he missed discovering Australia.
He didn’t know that there was something even greater beyond what he could see. We are like Tasman. We are able to see only a little ahead of us. The same for our students. They don’t know what is in the future. But God does. And it is likely much bigger than what we can even dream or imagine—even Australia-size—if we follow Him.
Hillsong – Let Hope Rise helps us to see others, like Tasman, who are doing their work day-by-day and giving God the glory in what they do. The movie is coming out this Friday, September 16th. Don’t miss it. It’s truly inspirational!