Once I know the story I tend to like to watch it again and focus my critical eye on the minor theme.
Like today for instance, I was watching the classic “Rudy” who striving against all odds (academic and physical) dreamed of someday playing football for Notre Dame. That’s the major theme. Underlying that was the story of Rudy’s brother, Frank. He had the natural academic and athletic abilities to accomplish only what Rudy dreamed of yet, he chose to settle for the mediocre. This is the minor theme.
This minor theme is so poignantly displayed in the scene where Rudy’s father is announcing his acceptance to Notre Dame over the intercom at the mill where he and his son’s were employed. As my eyes are watched Rudy’s father bursting with pride and the entire mill giving Rudy a round of applause the camera slowly shifted my attention to his somber- faced brother, Frank where I could see that Rudy’s success shouted nothing but failure to him.
At that point I asked, “What if Rudy had listened to Frank?” There would have been no movie, no story to tell except for a boy who settled into life in an old mill town to make a living instead of making a life. Then I wondered, “How many times have I majored in this minor theme myself? How many times have I been Frank and settled for mediocrity instead of living the life God intended for me to live? How many times have I ignored the desires he placed in my heart to pursue the comfort of the crowds? How many times have I stayed when God said ‘Go’?”I do believe God places dreams in our hearts. I do believe he wants us to pursue those dreams. Sometimes they’re desires that we have no means to attain apart from the miraculous and sometimes we know they are desires for which we’ve been gifted. Either way, God is the author of those dreams and desires…our major theme, if you will.
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