A while ago hubby watched a movie one night when he couldn’t sleep. Me – I was of course so far in zzz land that I don’t think I knew that he was even up that night. The next morning, he told me of a movie that he watched and how much he enjoyed it and that he thinks I should watch it.
And so last night I did.
And it was wonderful.
It’s a story written by Mitch Albom of “Tuesdays with Morrie” fame. And it tells the true of story of Mitch’s experience of visiting his Rabbi who asked me to prepare a eulogy for him. At the time of the request, the Rabbi was 82 – he eventually died at age 90 and in the intervening years Mitch Albom used to visit his Rabbi regularly to prepare a eulogy based on who the man was, not just the man as a Rabbi. This experience led Mitch Albom to take a journey to not only question his faith, but other faiths as well.
At the same time, while he was visiting with his Rabbi, Mitch Albom meets and eventually befriends a black protestant pastor who is ministering in the poorest area of Detroit. In fact, the area is so poor that their 100-year-old church building has a huge hole in the roof, and they have no money to fix it. Mitch Albom questions whether he should assist, as this pastor – Pastor Henry Covington – as he had been a drug addict, convicted of murder and he had no idea as to whether he can trust him or not.
As quoted from Mitch Albom’s website:
Feeling unworthy, Albom insists on understanding the man better, which throws him back into a world of faith he’d left years ago. Meanwhile, closer to his current home, Albom becomes involved with a Detroit pastor – a reformed drug dealer and convict – who preaches to the poor and homeless in a decaying church with a hole in its roof.
Moving between their worlds, Christian and Jewish, African-American and white, impoverished and well-to-do, Mitch observes how these very different men employ faith similarly in fighting for survival: the older, suburban rabbi, embracing it as death approaches; the younger, inner-city pastor relying on it to keep himself and his church afloat.
As America struggles with hard times and people turn more to their beliefs, Mitch and the two men of God explore issues that perplex modern man: how to endure when difficult things happen; what heaven is; intermarriage; forgiveness; doubting God; and the importance of faith in trying times. Although the texts, prayers and histories are different, Albom begins to realize a striking unity between the two worlds – and indeed, between beliefs everywhere.
In the end, as the rabbi nears death and a harsh winter threatens the pastor’s wobbly church, Albom sadly fulfils the last request and writes the eulogy. And he finally understands what both men had been teaching all along: the profound comfort of believing in something bigger than yourself.
Have a Little Faith is a book about a life’s purpose; about losing belief and finding it again; about the divine spark inside us all. It is one man’s journey, but it is everyone’s story.”
The think that I liked most about this move is that Mitch Albom reminded me so much of my husband. My husband is a man with a heart of gold, who will help wherever he can, but who doubts and is cynical when it comes to faith and matters of the heart. And yet, because of this doubt, has faith at the very same time – you doubt what you do have, not what you don’t or what doesn’t matter. My husband will do whatever he can to help someone who needs it. In fact, his whole business model is to set up a business that people can use to make something of themselves, to work and earn their own money and be in charge of their own destiny – to set themselves up as “agents” of his business model and only their effort and dedication to their work will determine how much money they make or how well they do. That is my husband – always thinking of others. I am so proud of him and I am proud of the fact that he has this good heart.
I hope that I can always be the wife that my husband needs me to be – that I can love him, encourage him and gently show him the way to go. I hope that the stress of this world doesn’t cause my husband to lose his faith – and I hope his faith does not cause him to lose his cynicism. I know that sounds weird, but I love the fact that he questions – he doesn’t just accept and it is in questioning that we find answers. But only when we ask the right questions.
Thank you Lord for giving this man to me as my husband.
Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.
So my favourite quotes from the movie:
“I think people expect too much from marriage today,’ he said. ‘ They expect perfection. Every moment should be bliss. That’s TV or movies. But that is not the human experience. . . . Twenty good minutes here, forty good minutes there, it adds up to something beautiful. The trick is when things aren’t so great; you don’t junk the whole thing. It’s okay to have an argument. It’s okay that the other one nudges you a little, bothers you a little. It’s part of being close to someone. But the joy you get from that same closeness–when you watch your children, when you wake up and smile at each other–that . . . is a blessing. People forget that.” ― Mitch Albom, Have a Little Faith: The Story of a Last Request
“So, have we solved the secret of happiness?”
“I believe so,” he said
“Are you going to tell me?”
“For what you have. For the love you receive. And for what God has given you.”
Watch the movie – read the book. It is well worth it.