Saturday, March 31, 2012

Soul Surfing...

The last Friday of the month is "Movie Night" at Ihtus. I choose a film which had a good message or deals with a tough subject (or the Princess Bride if I am in the mood!) and we have a short discussion afterwards.

Last night we watched the fantastic movie "Soul Surfer" based on the real life story of Bethany Hamilton. It is an "emotional" movie with a message of hope (more about the movie at the end of this post after the spoiler alert so if you want to watch it I won't ruin it for you!). I highly recommend it if you haven't seen it! 

Up until now we have had varied success with our movie nights, with about 10 people coming mostly... But last night we had over 20! As we have English Conversation Classes also on Fridays, I decided to incorporate Movie nights as part of the English Class - we watch with English subtitles, so they are technically learning some English even during the film and afterwards the discussion (for those that stay) is in English! And as we have been having up to 20 people coming to the classes, and had another few other regular "Movie night" goers coming to see the film we managed to have a great group last night:
The discussion afterwards was great as I managed to pick up a lot of things I missed when watching - even though this was my third time...

 *****SPOILER ALERT***** (don't read further if you want to watch the film...)
Bethany is a girl who was born into a surfing family on Hawaii, who lost her arm in a shark attack. The story is how she finds the strength through her faith to get back up again and eventually become a professional surfer. She also went on a trip with World Vision to Thailand just after the Tsunami which is where she gained a lot of perspective. More about her here.

It is definitely a film you cry through in parts...even the boys said they were choking up a bit... And then one of the English students told me that her sister said that she wasn't able to understand anything at the beginning of the movie. But then half-way through the film she caught her bawling eyes out... so obviously she was understanding something :-)
The movie really is a feel good classic, and helps put things in perspective in our lives as well. At least I have both arms! And here she is able to compete in a sport where two arms are needed for balancing... and is up there amongst the best. And one of the things that is brought out in the movie is this need for perspective: when you look at things too closely it is hard to see them for what they really are. You need to get some distance and get a different perspective... that is a big lesson we all need to learn in life!

Some amazing quotes from the movie:

I wouldn't change what happened to me, because then I wouldn't have this chance in front of all of you. This chance to embrace more people then I ever could have with two arms. 

Who would have thought that teaching a kid to surf would teach me that surfing isn't the most important thing thing in the world? And that something else is. Love. Bigger than any tidal wave. More powerful than any fear.

I've learned that life is a lot like surfing. When you get caught in the impact zone, you need to get right back up, because you never know what's over the next wave. 

I don't need easy. I just need possible.

Normal is so over-rated. :-)

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