Life and circumstances have impacted Film & Theology events and this website over the last 10 years, as it’s been juggled amidst various seasons of busyness and strife. However, this year afforded a window to plot, plan, and grow the initiative in ways it’s never been before. That window will be closing before year’s end, leaving us with the question of where we’re taking this website and related events in 2013.
“Nothing is static, everything is evolving… everything is falling apart” – Tyler Durden, Fight Club
Forward or backward are the two sides of the coin we’ll be tossing soon. Status Quo just won’t be possible. The website alone has seen a marked increase this year, in addition to a rough draft of our book being written (currently in the editing phase). Just rewind a few years and you can see the difference:
2009 – 24 posts (about 1 every 2 weeks)
2012 – 65 posts (2/week), over 100 by year’s end
2013 – ?
I know some people mistakenly believe I just sneeze and wondrous content spews out (and there are days I buy into that lie and think I’m just that awesome… and need subsequent humbling). The reality is that while musing about much of this has become second nature, building it into a cohesive and helpful outpouring that speaks to others and equips them to create conversations takes a lot of mental time, composition, editing, audio and video production, and more. Hence, the more time I’m pulled in other directions and need to give attention to other work, this obviously hits the back burner, it simmers on the side rack staying warm until I get around to it.
Many of you ping me with ideas, movies to review, ideas you’d like to see fleshed out, and general encouragement. It seems there would be benefit from more, and so much of YOUR input has given birth to a dream:
…including pre-release primers for films instead of just post-film reflections, to help as you watch films the first time through.
…for contemplation and interaction with others to maximize your movie-going experience for God’s glory
…(managing editing, posting) so we can see others imitating and emulating what we’re learning
More instructional videos
…to address common concerns, objections, and equip others to emulate.
Published book (rough cover design shown)
…to help create more conversation and replication by pastors, Christians, and more.
The hope is also to travel, speak and lecture over the next year to train and equip others as well. Toward these ends, we’ve started a Kickstarter Project as part of the way to achieve the next stage of this: to raise sufficient funds that allow both publishing of the book and doubling (maybe tripling) the content on the website over the next year. Not familiar with Kickstarter? It’s a crowd funding project site that allows people like YOU to back initiatives they’re passionate about or curious to see happen. It’s essentially raising support, which is pretty familiar in ministry circles, only this one sets some strategic project goals and even provides rewards for backers.
Additionally, we’ve had our CinemaGIVE page up for a while (and ongoing support is always appreciated) but funding this goal is strategic and specific. To be frank, this won’t work unless every one of you who enjoys, benefits, and believes in Cinemagogue backs our Kickstarter initiative and contributes as able, well…
What if it doesn’t happen?
“Looks like I’m going nowhere…” – Luke Skywalker, Star Wars
God knows exactly what Cinemagogue should be in 2013. If it’s minimal, if the book takes more time, I’m confident it will be used to reach exactly who our Master Storyteller plans to impact in this next chapter of life. I’ll be content because he calls us to be so. If we don’t move forward, we will slide backward a bit: we’ll party like it’s 2009 again with a post every couple weeks and publishing of the book may take a lot longer. It’s a simple equation of time and treasure and having that bandwidth to build this into the adventure I envision long term.
Luke: “But it’s a whole ‘nother year. “
Uncle Owen: “Look, it’s only one more season.”
So… say goodbye to Cinemagogue 2012. It’s going to die and pull a phoenix, and the new bird is either going to be much more, or much less. In many ways it’s up to you to decide.
I have a vivid dream where this ministry can expand, create more conversation, and that we can take this thing to the next level right now. If God indeed inspired that dream, then maybe you share it too, and you can help make it a reality. I’m excited to see what happens next.
“Where we‘re going, we don’t need roads.” – Doc Brown, Back to the Future
Thank you for such an awesome ministry. Through you, God has demonstrated that he personally cares about me. I’ve enjoyed stories, in movies and books and video games for my whole life, but I’ve learned to feel guilty for caring about fiction. But what God has shown me is that He (1) gave me the desire and enjoyment of stories, (2) gave me the desire and ability to tell stories, and (3) did so because I’m created in His image, the Master Storyteller. You’ve freed me to enjoy stories as an act of worship, and even been a big part of God inspiring me to become an author. Praise God and thank you very much.