Monday, February 22, 2010

To Change the World Campaign – Through Five Core Principles Part 11

Step 2 is Equip.

This is the process where you develop and gain an understanding of your spiritual gifts and talents.

(1) What are your talents and gifts? We have all been given spiritual gifts. If you have been called by God to be a media missionary, He will have given you the talent necessary to complete the task. You cannot create talent. It can be enhanced, but it either is there or not. But what talent? Are you a writer, director, producer, actor, etc. Each discipline requires a completely different skill set. And what spiritual gifts have you been given? Discernment? Wisdom? Knowledge? They will all be required. has created a formula to help predict your success in the entertainment and media field. Here’s the formula. T + (N + K + E) + (C + A + D + F) + P + X = Y.

T is for talent. It is a determining factor, but you can have talent and still fail. N is for networking. Social skills are a necessity. You need a good understanding of how the industry works and how to work a room. K is for knowledge. You need to know everything about your field. For example, if you are director, you need to understand your craft. E is for entrepreneur. Opportunities usually don’t come looking for you. You must see what other people don’t see. Entrepreneurs make their own opportunities. C is for confidence. You must project confidence. Not false confidence. Your confidence should come from God. In this industry, perception IS reality. A is for attitude. A wrong attitude will sink your efforts. Are you willing to serve others and start at the bottom? That requires the right attitude. D is for Drive. Can you outwork everybody else? The media business requires long hours and dedication. F is for focus. Can you be laser-like in your approach to your work? Seeing the goal at hand is the secret of focus. P is for plan. Have one. Then have a backup plan. The point is you’ve gotta have a plan, preferably a good one. X is the unknown factor. For the Christian, this is God’s plan and purpose for your life. The X factor works in your favor if you’ve been called to be a media missionary. But it is not guaranteed. You must do your part so God can do His part. The X factor is usually the determining factor that gets you across the finish line. Y is the sum – the finish line.

(2) You must learn to allow the Holy Spirit to control and lead your life. Without the direction of the Holy Spirit, it is impossible to be a media missionary. John 14:26 says, “The Spirit will teach you all things.” The media missionary’s work is a spiritual calling. Acts 1:8 says, “But you shall receive power after the Holy Spirit is come upon you.” You will not be able to do this in your own strength. God may very well have given you the talent, but you will need the spiritual gifts to fulfill the calling.

I Peter 4:10 - 11 says, “God has given gifts to each of you from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Manage them well so that God’s generosity can flow through you.” Are you called to be a speaker? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Are you called to help others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then God will be given glory in everything through Jesus Christ.”

Romans 12:6 – 8 says, “God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out when you have faith that God is speaking through you; if your gift is that of serving others, serve them well; if you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching; if your gift is to encourage others, do it; if you have money, share it generously; if God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously; if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.

Jesus says in John 16:13-14, “When He, the Spirit of Truth, comes, He will guide you into all Truth. He will not be presenting His own ideas. He will be telling you what He has heard. He will tell you about the future. He will bring Me glory by revealing to you whatever He receives from Me.”

So what are some of the gifts of a film and media maker? We can find our inspiration in the Bible. We are teachers, servants, encouragers, and leaders. And we do this with compassion and love. It’s vital especially during Step 2 for students to have a mentor. Nothing is more important than having a committed Christian who is a media professional to personally advise and disciple a potential media missionary.
Step 3 is Training

This is the process wherein you receive the knowledge and training that you most likely would not receive in film school or college.

(1) Do you understand the Christian and Biblical worldviews? Without them, you cannot be a media missionary. Can you recognize other major worldviews, such as secular humanist, post-modernism, cosmic humanism or new age?

(2) How is God at work in Hollywood? This involves understanding how theology and film intersect. I’m not interested in theory. We need practical application on how to incorporate Biblical principles into mainstream Hollywood. That’s not as difficult as it sounds.

God is at work in Hollywood. And He has used secular filmmakers to tell His stories. For example, we can find God’s fingerprint in movies such as Lars and the Real Girl, Juno, Places in the Heart, Bella, Signs, Magnolia, and Grand Canyon. What make these movies spiritual? Can we discover the patterns? These are the lessons that the media missionary must learn.

(3) Media Literacy is what students won’t learn in film school or, for that matter, even in a Christian college or university setting. We covered media literacy in detail earlier. It is essential for future media missionaries to understand how media literacy works.

(4) Hollywood is a business. That’s why they call it show business. Film schools don’t do a good job of teaching the basics on how the industry functions. The following are some examples. How are projects financed? How do you buy film stock? What do things really cost? What goes on in deal making? What are the essentials of distribution? How does the marketing of a film affect its success? How do you network?

(5) What filmmakers should know is what they are often not taught. For example, most film schools teach students the “studio system” as if they were going to graduate college and start making $30 million films for a major studio. That’s unlikely to happen. Christians who are called to be media missionaries should take note that their best opportunities may be to enter into low-budget or independent filmmaking. A media missionary program will teach the skills necessary for low-budget filmmaking.

6) Christians who are coming to Hollywood need access to resources that will help them live and function in the industry. Where is your spiritual support system? Without one, you could be overwhelmed by the industry. Teaching you where the resources are is critical. You will need a church and fellowship group, as well as practical answers to where you can find affordable housing. You should know these answers before you go.

(7) How do you function in the entertainment industry as a media missionary so that you can complete your calling? In a practical sense, what projects should you be working on? What roles should I accept or reject? How do I function as a Christian in this business? What is my responsibility as a Christian in this industry. These are some of the basic questions that students often ask. These questions get to the heart of the role and purpose of a media missionary. Ask these questions to Christians in the industry, and you will receive many different answers.

No comments:

Post a Comment