Don Verdean Movie Review

1445 - don verdean

Overall Rating:

4/5 Stars

What’s It About:

A self-professed biblical archaeologist who has fallen on hard times starts to bend the truth in order to continue inspiring the faithful.

Genre:

Quasi Mockumentary

Actors:

Sam Rockwell
Amy Ryan
Sam Forte
Danny McBride
Jemaine Clement
Rating By Category: 

My Thoughts:

I watched this because I recognized the actors and it’s a spoof focus of people being self-proclaimed experts on the “holy land” but being from USA and getting large crowds to listen to them after they discovered things no one had before.  This semi-sad, but humorous story takes us on the downward spiral of a good-hearted man who wants to lead people to God, but compromises a little here and there until those little twists and turns become avenues and realms he never wanted to go down or visit. It also explores what he ultimately does when he finds himself in those hard situations.

The film does a painfully excellent job of poking fun at backwards fundamental christians who feel like the culture is winning over christianity and the lengths they will go to to fight this movement towards God apathy.

There’s a bit of violence, but overall it’s a pretty family-friendly film.

Living as Jesus Lived

joesurfquotetemplate

Jesus, who is eternal God, stepped down and into earth to become man to give us rich, abundant life. He gave up much of his power, glory, and rights to empower others. Why should we not do the same?

Unity 4 Orphans provides a platform, a sphere, a methodology for anyone to experience this type of “dying of the self so that others can live”. When you come on a trip, you give up your riches and comforts of life in America to step into the world of these orphans and vulnerable children, to experience life as they do. Join us: https://unity4orphans.com/trips/

Nicaragua in the News

31890906_1657742924309667_9216559553003388928_o

Nicaragua has been in the news a lot lately and I am praying there will be a peaceful end to the turmoil. The protests were sparked when the government proposed changes to the social security system. According to an article from CNN, “The changes would increase contributions into the social security system by workers and employers but reduce the amount retired workers will get as a pension.”

31588334_1657742980976328_9168926712128339968_n

31870922_1657743020976324_2417099047480328192_n

31818144_1657743117642981_1889141541239259136_o

31870254_1657742954309664_6497572034585821184_n

Some of you may not know that Unity 4 Orphans also supports vulnerable children in Nicaragua. I actually have a trip to Nicaragua planned for June and am hoping I’ll still be able to go.

One group of children we support is in the capital city of Managua, where many of the protests have been. We work with a church down there that is a sort of multi-service center. They do a feeding program twice a week for 30-40 kids, hold church services, and also run an ESL program. Their ESL program has been going on for a year and they have a group of small, but dedicated kids who come regularly.

31891093_1657742987642994_2512143409565663232_o

The other group we support is in Miramar, which is a coastal town about an hour and half from Managua. No one from the outside has really invested in this community before and the kids are hungry to learn. Sixty kids have been showing up consistently each Sunday to learn English. Many of these kids have big dreams: they want to be doctors, engineers, accountants. But most of all, they want to help their families. These vulnerable children live in a very poor community where there’s no money for school or books.

30822503_1653527071397919_6799707796286586255_o

We are hoping to be able to expand the resources of both programs so that they can get more kids learning English, but we need your help to do it! Your donations to Education 4 Change will go directly back to purchasing materials and paying teachers so that the kiddos who want to learn can have a chance to do so. You can make a donation here.

A Weekend With the Surf Church in Baja Mexico

Last weekend I was fortunate to travel down to Baja Mexico with members of the Surf Church at La Jolla Christian Fellowship. We spent an epic weekend surfing and bonding before visiting a local orphanage. We loved on the kids and showed them the film, Walking on Water, which was translated into Spanish. Really cool to share that with them. If you’ve never seen it before, it’s a Christian surf documentary which features several pro surfers.

 

This was also a vision trip for what could be. I hope to do some trips in the future where we bring people down to surf and then do good at the same time by visiting local orphanages and communities. Like an overnight version of the trips we currently do at Unity 4 Orphans with some surfing mixed in. If this were to get off the ground, would you have an interest in participating?

Reflecting on Romans 8:1

joesurfquotetemplate

 

Reflecting on this passage recently made me think about how, if there are people in our lives that are constantly criticizing us and being negative towards us, why do we allow them to shape our lives and our identity when Jesus says there’s no condemnation for those who love him? For people who have negative thinking and an invisible voice inside them that’s condemning them (like me), why do you give allegiance to that voice when Jesus says he doesn’t condemn you?

Just think about it.

Conquering Doubts and Starting a Blog

Friends, I’ve decided to start a blog. There are a lot of reasons why I didn’t want to start one and still don’t really want to, but I’m going to push through them because I think the positives outweigh my personal hesitations. If you have a blog or public persona, I’d like to know what personal fears you conquered or struggles you overcame when making your own decision to venture into this realm of blogging/creating.

26170598_10155570859258791_7519906214491037103_o

6 Reasons Why I Didn’t Want to Start a Blog:

Fear

-Will people even find this worth reading? Does it add value to people’s lives or to a particular conversation?

Am I Smart Enough to Have a Blog?

Am I Drawing Too Much Attention to Myself?

-I feel like there’s such a culture of self-promotion today that I was hesitant to engage. But I’m going to try to walk that line between self-promotion and giving value/raising awareness.

My ADD

-It’s hard for me to sit down, focus, and write a whole blog. I want to see things through to completion, but I also know myself and know this won’t be as easy for me as it is for some people.

Competition

-There are so many blogs out there, will anyone even want to read or listen to what I have to say?

The Internet is a Noisy Place

-There’s so much content on the Internet, some of it great and some of it garbage, I don’t want to just add to the noise. I want to provide value and give a voice to the voiceless.

 

5 Reasons Why I’m Doing It Anyway

-I believe God has given me a unique perspective and a prophetic voice to say something.

-I’ve been called to a unique niche of people. I have a responsibility to the poor and to the vulnerable children, to be their voice in a noisy, busy world.

-I believe keeping a blog will me work through my own issues surrounding shame and negative self-talk. It’ll also keep me from giving into fear.

-I want to do more speaking to raise awareness about the issues facing the poor and vulnerable children. I hope this blog will help open those doors.

-I hope this blog will me raise awareness and ultimately money for Unity 4 Orphans through a different channel.

 

On this blog, I intend to share more of the personal story that led to the creation of Unity 4 Orphans and more of the behind-the-scenes of the organization. But I’ll also be sharing lighter stuff, too. Movie reviews (if you know me, you know I love to watch movies), bible verses, favorite videos and memes, stuff from my travels, my thoughts, and whatever else develops organically. I hope you’ll join me at JoeBrandi.com.