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Category Archives: movies

April 18, 2007 – two Turkish Christians and a German missionary were tortured and killed inside a Bible Publishing house in Malatya, Turkey.

Summer 2008 – two young filmmakers from Texas set out to create Malatya, a documentary exploring how three Christian martyrs have shaken the nation’s roots. (one of our children, Joey Shaw, pastor of international missions at Austin Stone Community Church in Austin, TX, is the producer).

The three men were tied to their chairs, tortured with butcher knives and killed for worshiping Christ. The wives of the two Turkish men have followed the model of Jesus and publicly forgiven those guilty of their husbands’ deaths.

Turkey is a country of nearly 72 million, 99.8 percent of which is Muslim. This has left their surviving families and friends with little human support to lean on in a nationwide church of around 3,000 believers.

3000 believers – in a nation of 72 million!!!!

Even before the martyrdom, Turkish Christians faced persecution. They were unlawfully jailed, interrogated about their activities and even tortured. Attacks and attempted murders have increased since the Malatya martyrdom.

Find out more, watch the trailer, schedule a screening or buy the entire DVD at


Living in the South keeps some things before your attention. One is the Civil War – or, as one elderly southern belle said, “the recent unpleasantness.

Several weeks ago, a movie theater offered a special showing of the classic, Gone with the Wind. Scarlett O’Hara enters the screen as a spoiled young woman who is thoughtless of anything other than her beauty. Scarlett is the center of attention for all the young men in the area, and has been spurned by only one man. She is depressed because she can neither attract nor control him.

A key scene takes place early in the movie when she and her father walk out at sunset and look over their plantation, Tara. He draws her attention to the beauty of the land, and she says all this means nothing to her. He replies:

Do you mean to tell me, Katie Scarlett O’Hara, that Tara – that land doesn’t mean anything to you? Why, land’s the only thing in the world worth working for, worth fighting for, worth dying for, because it’s the only thing that lasts.”

Scarlett replies, “Oh, Pa. You talk like an Irishman.”

“It’s proud I am that I’m Irish, and don’t you be forgetting, Missy, that you’re half-Irish, too. And, to anyone with a drop of Irish blood in them; why, the land they live on is like their mother. Oh, but there, there now, you’re just a child. It’ll come to you, this love of the land. There’s no getting away from it if you’re Irish.”

The camera zooms out and Scarlett and her father are silhouetted against the red sunset; Tara’s theme fills the theater and, if you’re from the South, tears well up in your eyes.

Gerald O’Hara’s words provide an anchor for Scarlett time and again – “The only thing that lasts – is….

Whatever I believe is the only thing that last will, indeed, exert a magnetic attraction for me. I will return to it over and over. I will build my life on it.

How would you fill in the blank?

The only thing that lasts is… ______________

Ruthe and I saw “The Great Debaters” last week. In my opinion, this movie is a good way to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr day. It is a reminder of how things were when the Civil Rights Movement began.  

The movie is too intense for small children – there is the scene of a lynching of a black man. There is also a brief suggestion of sex between two young people.

I appreciated the way human dignity was portrayed. The Christian faith was honored rather than lampooned. Study, history, learning – all were encouraged and upheld.

I’m reading  Jonathan Aitken’s  biography of John Newton, the ex-slave ship captain, friend of Wilberforce and composer of Amazing Grace. It is a wonderful story, and a well-written book. I recommend it.

Enjoy this video from the movie Amazing Grace and Chris Tomlin’s beautiful and haunting version of the great hymn,   

Check out the trailer for Prince Caspian, one of my favorites in the Chronicles of Narnia books, by C. S. Lewis. Looks very good!

Yesterday, I had lunch with a friend who made a statement – not original with him – that I have come back to over and over.  I believe it is true. Here it is:

” The principles you live by create the world you live in.”

 Are there any exceptions to this axiom? It applies to the home, marriage, work, career, church, government, leisure, relationships –

Live by the principle of love – you will live in a world of love.

Live by the principle of respect – you will find yourself respected.

So – to change the world you live in, you must change the principles you live by.