Amazing Grace (2006) is a biographical movie about William Wilberforce, a British parliamentarian credited for passing anti-slave trade legislation in Great Britain.
Among the many moving parts in the movie, one particular part stayed with me, inspiring me when things become difficult. If anyone told you that making the world better will be easy and always feel good, they lied. When you hit that day when it’s so hard you want to stay in bed and not get out for a while (true story), watch the movie, it might help you get up.
William Wiberforce begins his quest to abolish the slave trade as a young, idealistic lawmaker. He goes on enthusiastically when he was given an opportunity to introduce legislation to ban the slave trade in Great Britain. But both the bill and Wiberforce are highly unpopular and the bill is shot down.
Even so, Wiberforce doesn’t give up, continuing his efforts through many backdoor strategies. Yet, 15 years later, with the whole world against him, he becomes tired, disheartened, and ready to leave politics. At one point we find him in bed, ill and unwilling to keep up the fight.
Despite his attempts to convince himself that ending the slave trade is a failed cause, and life would be easier without having to fight, his conscience cannot rest. He realizes that he needs to continue to do what God has asked him to do or he will not be at peace with himself.
So, he rolls out of bed and tries again.
Of course, it is a movie, complete with a stirring soundtrack (you can listen and see if it makes a good one for your life), but dramatics aside, there is a simple and important lesson for everyone:
Doing the right thing, sticking to promises made with God, standing up for truth, is NEVER easy. It will test you to the very core, pull all the things that gave you certainty, comfort and stability out from under you.
That is why, in our every day, it is important to connect back to that which transcends all and gives us comfort to strengthen our relationship with God and our conviction and understanding of truth.
We need to prepare ourselves to be uncomfortable but comforted in knowing that what we are doing is inevitable, and that with time, perseverance and clarity, change will come.
What everyday habits do you have to prepare you to do the difficult? What would you like to try?