Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Chariots of Fire
From the opening scene, Chariots of Fire invokes deep emotions that have captivated audiences for over 30 years. It certainly captivated me as I watched the British national track and field team training for the upcoming 1924 Olympics to be held in Paris, France. The scene evokes the sense of optimism, hope and victory as each team member is running on the beach in unison.
Chariots of Fire is based on a true story. The part of the story that shocked the world was Eric Liddell’s refusal to run in the 100 meter heat because the event fell on the Sabbath. He faced enormous pressure from his country, including the Prince of Wales and future King of England. His refusal set off a firestorm of criticism. Is God first or is your country first? Is national pride more important than your integrity and beliefs.
Harold Abrams, the son of Jewish immigrants from Lithuania, is also fighting his own battles. He faces enormous odds in discovering his identity and purpose. Abrams is trying to run his race. But what is the source of his power. Liddell asks the question, where does the power come from to see the race to the end. It is the central question of Chariots of Fire. Two very different men. Two very different belief systems. Each will have to find the source of that power in order to fulfill their destinies.
Bottom line. if you haven’t seen this film or if you’ve seen it multiple times, Chariots of Fire will inspire you and provide a perspective and insight on how you can see your race to the end.