Several weeks ago Owen Valley Health Campus sponsored a night at the Tivoli and showed Polar Express. Several years ago I posted some thoughts about the movie and thought I would submit it to you again since I have so many new readers. Here it is (with some changes).
Polar Express, based on a book by Chris Van Allsburg, tells us the story of one boy’s journey from doubt to faith. He lies in bed on Christmas Eve, hoping to hear sleigh bells, but his doubt grows. Later, he is awakened not by sleigh bells but by a train in his front yard. He walks out front and the conductor (Tom Hanks’ voice) greets him with a question: “Well, are you coming?” Boarding the train (Polar Express) soon turns out to be the smartest decision he makes.
He finds many other children on the train. A sensitive black girl. A loud, obnoxious, selfish know-it-all. A lost little boy who appears to believe all the things people have whispered in his ear. The train is an adventure ride as he meets the children, the mysterious man on the roof, the conductor, and others. The boy travels to the North Pole, where Santa will give away the first gift of Christmas. During the trip, the young boy continues struggling with doubt. Two messages stand out in the movie (among others).
Lesson #1: “It doesn’t matter where you’re going; what matters is deciding to get on.”
How many times have you allowed fear or hesitancy or the whispers of others in your ear, stop you from getting on the train? We run away instead of run to. When that happens we often grow cynical and bitter and “curse” our lot in life.
Lesson #2: “The most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.”
Talk about a lesson in faith!! Does that not remind you of Hebrews 11:1? I daresay that probably all of us, at one time or another, have questioned what we believe in..even though we cannot see Him.
The choice we make is whether to get on the train or not. He has drawn me to Himself but the choice is mine to get on board or not. The ironic thing is that neither I, nor you, have any clue whatsoever what getting on board holds for us. Faith and hope cannot be seen in tangible ways. It is a great time to hang on and let go. He won’t let go of you…that is a promise!!
Have you ever seen the movie? Any comments about my thoughts or would you like to add your own? Feel free to do so. If you haven’t seen it, I think you should. Just try not to groan when the singer at the great event looks and sounds like Stephen Tyler from Aerosmith.