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Friday, March 02, 2012

Producing isn't as important as reproducing - Matthew - pages 289-290


Let me start with a random thought...the movie: "Pay it Forward"

Pay It Forward is one those movies that leaves a lot of residue.

When it's over, the setting and dialogue may drift from memory, but the core, the soul of the film lingers.
The storyline, based on the novel by Catherine Ryan Hyde, is so simple and downright good that at first even the title boggles the mind. Ads for the movie explain, "When someone does you a big favor, don't pay it back, pay it forward."

Such ideas expand the expectations of goodwill. Most times, "big favors" encourage "big paybacks." Appreciation requires reciprocity. Give and ye shall receive.

But Hyde's idea, and the one that premieres in the screenplay written by Leslie Dixon says that instead of paying a person back for a favor, you "pay it forward" and do something for three other people that they can't do for themselves. Those three people in turn continue the cycle of altruism.

Some say the story, which showcases the talent of intense performers Kevin Spacey, Helen Hunt and Haley Joel Osment, teeters too close to the edge of sentimentality and syrupy social consciousness. They criticize the story's structure, the jumbled sequence, the startling ending.

But that is not what most moviegoers will remember.

What lingers, in the way that mist does after a rain is the idea of extending one's blessings into the universe, three by three by three…the power of multiplying one’s life beyond one’s self.

…the power of multiplying one’s life beyond one’s self

I love Latin...that is to say, I love studying etymology and am intrigued with dead language.  One of the Latin phrases that has always gripped me is...

non nobis solum nati sumus - "not unto ourselves alone are we born"


…the power of multiplying one’s life beyond one’s self


One of the quotes in the movie that struck me afresh that has become one of the most popular expressions of frustration in our culture is the phrase…

"Everything sucks"
                                    …that sucks…you suck. 

--Where did this phrase come from do you suppose?  Maybe, just maybe, it’s too often so true…most things don’t gush…they suck.  They suck you dry, suck out your vigor, suck out your energy.  What if most things don’t produce, but reduce? hmmm?

There’s more Reaping than Sowing
More Infection than Affection
More Defreshers than Refreshers.
More Sterility than Fertility

Latin phrase that speaks of God’s desire for multiplication…
ubertas et fidelitas - "Fertility and Faithfulness"

Matthew 25
The Parable of the Talents
 14 "Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his property to them. 15 To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey. 16 The man who had received the five talents went at once and put his money to work and gained five more. 17 So also, the one with the two talents gained two more. 18But the man who had received the one talent went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master's money.

 19 "After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20 The man who had received the five talents brought the other five. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with five talents. See, I have gained five more.'

 21"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!' 22 "The man with the two talents also came. 'Master,' he said, 'you entrusted me with two talents; see, I have gained two more.'

 23"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!' 24"Then the man who had received the one talent came. 'Master,' he said, 'I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 

25 So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'  26 "His master replied, 'You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

 28" 'Take the talent from him and give it to the one who has the ten talents. 29 For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.'

But the man who had received the one talent went off,
dug a hole in the ground
and hid his master's money.

Three steps to ineffective living…
  1. He went off (seclusion & isolation)
  2. He dug a hole (sideways energy)
  3. He hid his talent (selfishness & safety)

The Christian ideal has not been found tried and found wanting, it has been found difficult and left untried. -- GK Chesterton

Core thought: Reproduction.

“Give a man a fish; you feed him for a day.  Teach a man to fish; and you feed him for a lifetime”—Author unknown

Other renderings…
“Give a man a fish; you feed him for a day…teach a man to fish and he’ll sit in a boat drinking beer all day long.”

“Build a man a fire, and he’s warm for a day…set a man on fire, and he’s warm for the rest of his life.”


2 Timothy 2:2 –
“What you have received teach to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.”


"Disciples be damned. It's only the masters
that matter. Those who create."
 -
Pablo Picasso

But Jesus felt so differently than Picasso…He heart was…

“Disciples be made!  It’s only the multipliers
that matter. Those who procreate.”
– Jesus’ heartbeat.

Multiplication is really Influence. 

Etymology of Influence:
Middle English, from Old French, from Medieval Latin influenti.  Date: 14th century

It's where we get the word "Influenza" – “The Flu” 

How contagious are you?  What virus are you sneezing so others can catch it?

The bible uses the analogy “of clouds without rain” to describe a sterile and unproductive life.

Because it is not only important that we are creative…but that we are procreative.
It’s not just important that we are producers…but reproducers.

Proverbs 25:14
Like clouds and wind without rain is a man who boasts of gifts he does not give.

Jude 1:12
These men (false prophets/professing Christians) are blemishes at your love feasts, eating with you without the slightest qualm—shepherds who feed only themselves. They are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind; autumn trees, without fruit and uprooted—twice dead.

How contagious are you?  What kind of influence do you have on others?  What are you doing with your talents?  Who are you affecting these days and how are you affecting them?  Is your life reproducing life?  Are you Paying it forward?

___________________________

He is greatest whose strength carries up the most hearts by the attraction of his own.  - Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) 

God, make me a procreator, not just a creator.
God, make me a reproducer, not just a producer.


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