0:00:02 – Speaker 1
Welcome to the nextTalk podcast, where we share real stories and practical advice for parenting the digital world.
0:00:09 – Speaker 2
We’re your hosts, Mandy and Kim. Mandy is an award-winning author and the founder of nextTalk, and I’m the director of nextTalk, a nonprofit organization created to strengthen families through open communication. You can check out all of our resources at nextTalk.org.
0:00:24 – Speaker 1
For wives, moms and friends tackling culturally relevant topics from a Christian perspective. We’re sharing what we’ve learned and where we’ve failed. We’re so glad you’re here for this conversation.
0:00:38 – Speaker 2
So a few weeks ago me and my kids went to go see the movie The Jesus Revolution. I wasn’t sure about it because you had gone and you were like you have to see it And I wanted to see it. but I wasn’t sure because my kids are younger than yours and I had heard good things but I figured there were some kind of heavy topics in there. But we went and I’m so glad that we did.
0:01:00 – Speaker 1
I saw this on opening weekend and I was texting everybody I knew who said I don’t believe this, because there were so many cool things about like church culture really, that I wanted to talk about with my friends. I didn’t want to spoil any parts of it for them and so I couldn’t like say my feelings or thoughts or whatever. But my teenagers and I we went to see it. My husband and we had just had some great conversations about it, but it is PG-13. So kids with littles, you do need to be aware. I know, kim, you were texting me and asking me about what I thought And I think the biggest thing that came to mind was there’s drinking and partying and there’s an overdose scene. That’s kind of scary. Not any bad words, but you know, some kissing, some falling in love, that sort of thing. For the most part, i felt like your kids would be okay with it.
0:01:51 – Speaker 2
Yeah, and I think we all know what you’ve talked to your kids about and what they’ve seen or you’ve discussed with them or explained to them. But it also helps to go to the plugged in movie review site. They break it down Like here are the themes, here are some talking points that you may want to discuss before and after the movie Violence, nudity, like they cover things in detail So you can kind of get the breakdown and decide if this is the right fit for your family. So I looked at that ahead of time, talked with my kids about a few things and of course, my one rule If mom says close your eyes, you close your eyes, and so that was something I always say before a movie, and we only did that once with my younger one. But overall great conversations and something that I think was worth going to check out with our family.
0:02:41 – Speaker 1
So the website Kim is talking about is pluggedincom. If you don’t know that website, we’ve been recommending it for years And so it’s just a good resource for you. I know one thing for me. I mean, i’m not going to lie We’re all about the good Christian movies over here, but sometimes they’re cheesy And I have to be real And sometimes my teenagers watch them and they’re like mom, this was not that movie. They thought it was really cool, they thought it was good acting, they thought the storyline was good And it wasn’t like everything was perfect, which is what I liked about the movie. It was real.
We’re going to dive into that on this show, about that actual aspect of it. But I just want to say, if you’re one of those that are like don’t watch Christian movies because they’re cheesy, don’t put this movie in that box. It’s a little different. But I want to dive into Jesus Revolution because now that you’ve seen it, you can talk about it, and if you haven’t seen it, we will give you a few spoiler alerts on here. So you may be like I’m not going to listen to this till I see it, or you may not care, but we want to give you that disclaimer. And talking about.
0:03:46 – Speaker 2
There were three main things that I think, kim, you and I wanted to talk about, that we were really texting about and really diving into See the movie whenever you can figure that out and then come back to the show if you haven’t seen it and see if you agree with us on these things. We’d love to hear from you. You can always email us at admin at nextdocorg or messages on social media. But the first thing that really stood out to us was the bandwagon mentality. This was a very big theme that I thought you had like a really kind of cool perspective on me and either I didn’t think of right off the bat.
0:04:22 – Speaker 1
Well, so at the beginning of the movie the hippies are kind of like this group of people that aren’t accepted into the church, right, and you see the movement happening in the movie And so they have signs that are like no war, peace, love, all things that you’re like, well, yeah, i want to get on board with that, right, those sounds like, those sound like great things. But then that hippie movement kind of turned into this dark thing, you know where the drugs and the alcohol and it spirals into that, like these young kids, it shows them, these young college kids, you know, hearing these messages of no war and peace and love and saying, yes, i want to be a part of this and I’m, you know, i’m going to march and I’m going to go with my sign and all the things. But then they started using drugs and it kind of spiraled and kind of got out of control because that became like their identity almost.
0:05:17 – Speaker 2
Well, and love turned into more of like sexual freedom instead of the concept of love that Jesus talks about.
0:05:25 – Speaker 1
Yeah, yeah, There’s this really cool scene in the beginning. So there’s a pastor and his wife and they have a young college age daughter and she brings home a hippie for her dad to meet because there’s all these conversations about hippies coming in the church and that kind of stuff, right And the hippie and the pastor are there on his kitchen table. And there’s this scene where the hippie who, by the way, it’s the actor who plays Jesus in the chosen, which is another great series that you need to go watch and it’s on Netflix now the chosen But it’s so weird because I couldn’t get over him I keep thinking of him as Jesus. That was us. He’s a hippie.
0:06:05 – Speaker 2
My kids were like why is Jesus a hippie in this movie? I’m like that’s not Jesus, he’s a good actor. He’s a good actor.
0:06:12 – Speaker 1
He’s a good actor. So, anyway, there’s this scene between the hippie and the pastor and the hippie is saying to the pastor my people, like the hippies, we’re searching for something. How cool would it be? And I’m paraphrasing here. But he basically says how cool would it be if the search could end in them finding Jesus. But no churches will let us in because they’re afraid of us and we need Jesus, like this group needs Jesus. That’s what they’re ultimately looking for. They’re searching for something.
And I just started weeping And I mean my teenage son looked at me like what is wrong with mom, like you could just see, and even my husband he was like what? But I had this moment in the movie theater because I work a lot in this church space in on. You know, so many times I see churches. You know we are holding true to biblical beliefs, which we should. That’s what a church does. But it goes so far to the side that we don’t love people, well, outsiders who don’t look like us, and I just pictured this conversation that sometimes I have to have with people inside churches that I say but they’re searching for something and they need Jesus and we have to love them and we have to treat them with respect and we have to invite them into our church because this is what Jesus would do. And it’s scary, i get it, but that moment in the movie theater I just was like this is so culturally relevant to where we are today in our world.
0:07:51 – Speaker 2
Well, i think so many of us can relate to that, because change and people that are different than us feels like you’re taking this leap into this unknown space and what if it all goes wrong? You know what if I’m making a bad choice? What if I ruin my church? And you can just see all those thoughts going through the pastor’s head. He gets up and he’s standing at the kitchen sink and he starts crying like tearing up, because you can see that he’s like you know what.
This guy’s right We have to open our doors to the unloved and the unwanted, and I believe that. I believe that is the space our churches are in now, with so many different communities and cultures that are relevant in our society, that are different than the conservative Christian church. I think there are snippets of little churches around our country that are starting to open their eyes to that. In fact, this last weekend at our church, our pastor was talking about what would it look like if we were a church that opened our doors and just really loved people where they were at, And it took me right back to the movie, because it’s the same theme Love people where they’re at. And that doesn’t mean giving up your beliefs. It means just loving them.
0:09:00 – Speaker 1
Well, and throughout the movie you kind of see this because the hippies start coming to church and then there are some people that leave the church. They get mad and they’re like I’m out of here. I remember this one scene it was so funny, like one of the hippies. So the hippies created a band and they were leading worship.
Yes, that was so funny, which I love that I’m referring to him as the hippies. It’s so like a box that I’m putting them in. But that’s kind of how the movie set it up, that it was this group of people and they were kind of outcasted. But I loved this one scene. Like they’re leading worship And one of the drummers was like talking about like his drug conviction that he had to go I don’t know to court or something. And people were like okay, you won’t be here that day. But what was really cool in the movie is they loved him and accepted them. Like come on, in. You know, this pastor did anyway. Not everybody in his church did, but this pastor did. But he never gave into the sin, so he never started using drugs with them. He never let drugs being used in his church And I think so many in this culture right now churches are afraid of becoming like progressive, like well, we’re just gonna accept everything then, like the sin or the wrongdoing or the non-biblical beliefs.
And what I loved about the movie is they loved well, but they didn’t accept the sin. They didn’t say, okay, come in, use drugs when you’re a church or whatever. That was a hard no, because that’s not who Jesus is. What it reminded me of is Ephesians 4, 14 and 15. This is one of my favorite verses because, you know, just like I said in the movie, when I saw the signs of no war, love and peace, i was like, well, yeah, i wanna be involved in that, until they started using drugs and went crazy.
And I think so many times in our world today we have so many people searching. There’s all these sweet slogans that we hear. I mean we’ve tackled love as love before. Right, it sounds wonderful, but what happens when a 70-year-old wants to marry a 12-year-old? like, does that apply? And so it’s just such a slippery slope And it reminds me of Ephesians 4, 14 and 15. This is what it says We will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of the body, the church. I love that phrase, kim. When people try to trick us with lies, so clever they sound like the truth. We’ve done so many shows on social media slogans and hashtags and cute little things that you think, well, yeah, that sounds great, but when you put it in context for kids, it could mean a lot of different horrible things that aren’t biblical, and so that’s where the confusion comes in. I think a lot of times But I saw so many parallels to us in our churches Like and I do wanna speak if anybody’s working in a church, leading a church and listening to this podcast Like you got to be ready.
You got to be ready for people who aren’t like you, who believe differently from you, to walk through your doors and you have to love them well. I’m not asking you to say everything they’re doing is right. I’m not asking you to agree with everything that they’re doing. I mean, that’s the part of church. You come to be challenged, you come to be convicted, to learn about Jesus and to know I’m a sinner. I need to be better. We all go to church for that reason, but we’ve got to love. Well, we have a whole generation of kids who are searching and they don’t feel like they can walk in a church.
0:12:46 – Speaker 2
And if they are searching where they are searching, which is a lot of times on social media, they’re going to be loved very well by all the people that have the message that you’re afraid of.
And so what’s going to happen is they’re just like the Bible verse. There’s going to be these wonderful slogans and sayings that sound so good and so welcoming and loving, And they’re going to jump on this bandwagon, which is our point here about the bandwagon mentality. They’re going to jump on this bandwagon because it feels so good and they feel accepted and loved. And if you think about it, even if it’s your own family member that you’re taking to church once a month or you’re telling them about Jesus, I guarantee you the amount of time that they’re hearing that message pales in comparison to the hours upon hours that they’re being inundated with information coming through their phone. So they will easily jump on these bandwagons And if we do not open our doors, if we do not love people where they’re at, they’re going to go where they do get the love that they’re looking for. So this is a critical time in our history And the movie really, really shined a light on that. I thought it was really great.
0:14:04 – Speaker 1
It just brought me to tears, and that’s early on in the movie, and so I knew at that point I was kind of scared where it was going to go and how the movie was going to handle it, and I thought they did a great job of really navigating what it feels like in a church today, i think in a healthy church who’s trying to stay true to God’s teachings and love people. Well, there’s a messy middle that we always talk about And in our homes, if you’re having these conversations and you’re trying to disciple your kids in that way, there’s a messy middle there of loving but not, you know, accepting and agreeing with every little thing, and I think we all can relate to that. I just think it was so well done and so relevant to today’s world. Yeah.
0:14:49 – Speaker 2
So the second theme that we really liked about this movie was about the pastor, the hippie pastor, because there was, like the, you know, typical church pastor that you imagine when you think of a conservative church dad. And then there was like the hippie pastor who didn’t wear shoes and lots of fringe and, you know, just long hair and you know, not conventional. And that pastor was the one who really spoke into the traditional pastor And they began down this path together at looking at the church in a new way. And, you know, hippies are invited in and things are changing and they’re speaking Jesus into these people And the momentum is growing and growing and more people are coming and the church is growing and people are being saved And it’s so exciting, like such a great part of the movie.
And then the hippie pastor because of the popularity of what they’re doing, he gets bit by pride And I think that’s something we can all relate to. You know, you’re popular, you’re sought after, people are looking up to you, there’s demands and suddenly you begin to forget that it’s all God and you’re just a vessel. And this plays out in the movie and you see this slippery slope he starts to go down and how pride starts to take over his life And I didn’t see it coming. But I loved it because it was so eye opening for my kids.
0:16:20 – Speaker 1
Same same Kim. I did not see this part of the movie, this theme being brought into the movie, and I loved it too because it was real. I think that if it wouldn’t have been included, it would have just been oh, these pastors let all these people to meet Jesus, and what a great time you know that was, that they united the church or whatever. And I thought it was so real because it happens. We get prideful, we see God using us and then we think we’re doing it instead of him And we get a little ego about us And then we we stop praying, we stop searching, because we’re like we got this, god, i got this. You know, you put me in this position and I can do this And we all do. This is a human flesh thing, that we all struggle with this pride issue. And I just loved that they included it because even after he left so that’s kind of a spoiler alert So they had this separation and the hippie guy kind of went off on his own and moved his family, whatever, and even after they left, god still worked, Yeah.
And so that is the thing that I took away from it is yeah, god can use people, like God used David, you know in the Bible, and God used Moses and Aaron and all these people, but they all had faults too And they all did bad stuff too, and it still didn’t negate how God used them. God still used the flawed people, but God kept going. And I think that ties back into the first talking point that we said about the bandwagon mentality and lies so clever they sound like the truth because there’s only one God. All these movements, these different what your identity is in all of that kind of stuff, those are all temporary things. There’s only one that is sustaining, that still moves, that it still keeps you grounded even if a pastor falls or even if your role model in the faith falls. That’s a separate situation than Jesus, because people are all flawed and they’re all gonna screw up. I just thought it was so real and I’m glad they included it, because that’s church culture.
0:18:42 – Speaker 2
Yeah, yeah. Well, i think it validated the movie because they didn’t try to make it all happy and positive and nothing bad ever happened once these two dudes came together to talk about Jesus Like that’s not realistic. And you know, with my younger kids they were shocked. They were like a pastor can fall in this way, and so it was great for us to talk through it and me to say you know what? God’s still gonna get it done.
We get to be a part of His plan and His mission when we say yes to a calling, but the moment that we let our pride get in the way, god’s gonna keep moving, and so we always have to be alert of little things that tell us okay, i probably am handling this wrong, i’m probably letting my pride get in the way, i’m probably out of sync with the Holy Spirit, and then step back and get back into prayer and fasting, back, into keeping our eyes on Jesus. And we just talked about a bunch of examples in our daily life about pride. You don’t have to be up on you know stage to have pride come in and get you. I mean it’s like in our day-to-day lives as students and mom and dad and friends. Pride is the enemy and it comes for us all, and so great opportunity to talk with your kids about knowing it’s exempt from these struggles. One and two. God is still gonna get it done, whether without us.
0:20:03 – Speaker 1
I remember when I first started the first group that it wasn’t called nextTalk, but then it was called Mom Talk and we were just 20 moms sitting around talking about the digital world and what we were gonna do about it. We had no idea what we were doing right. And I remember that and as our church said, hey, why don’t you grow this And why don’t you do this and that sort of stuff. And that’s kind of how nextTalk started in church. I’ll never forget a moment that I realized that I was being invited into a situation by God And as I was praying through it, I had talked to all of these pastors at our church about this group and I didn’t even know what the goal was. I didn’t even know what the solution was of open communication. I didn’t even have those answers yet And I just said I don’t know what I’m doing here.
I remember just working through those thoughts of who am I, what, why am I supposed to do this? And I came to the conclusion, after a lot of conversation with pastors and praying, and this was it. God was speaking to my heart. Mandy, i’m gonna do this. Whether without you, i’m gonna get this message out, i’m gonna help kids. I’m gonna help parents in the digital world. I’m gonna do it with or without you, but I’m inviting you into it And that is something that I go back to time and time again as we’ve gotten larger and the demand is bigger and this pride thing seeps in I keep going back to I can walk away tomorrow and God’s still going to get this done.
He’s still going to get this message out there. Wow, we’re just being invited in by the Lord to help him in this endeavor. Like what an honor. And I think you know, as we are called to certain things, whether it’s leading a Bible study in our church or leading our kids, whatever it is I think we need to be reminded of that. Like God is going to reach our kids’ hearts, whether we do it right or not. Like he’s going to speak to their little hearts. But he’s invited us to be disciples for our kids. He’s invited us to be leaders for our kids. Like what an honor that he wants to use little, all broken us to move hearts toward him. Like that’s pretty cool.
0:22:08 – Speaker 2
Yeah, and remind your kids that he starts using kids early too, like it’s not just adults. He uses kids to bring people to Jesus. In fact we had a recent situation in our home that reminded me of that, that God uses kids and that he can use anybody. Our son had his first sleepover And this was a big deal, you know, for mom and for the kids. And he went and had a great time But in the middle of the night had a horrible nightmare, and that’s not a usual thing for him. He said it was so bad that he woke up shaking and was terrified And he was about to go wake up the mom And then he felt this little voice tell him to wake up his friend. And you know, they’re young, they’re young kids, They’re in fifth grade, they’re 11 years old.
And he woke up his buddy and he was like I was so worried he was going to be mad Like I’m waking him out of sleep and I sound crazy having this nightmare. And he said my friend woke up and he said no, it’s fine man. He said let’s just pray. And his friend prayed with him in the middle of the night And he said he felt the shake stop and his heart rest And they were able to just work through that together with Jesus And he was able to go back to sleep soundly. And the first thing he told me when he jumped in the car the next day is my friend prayed with me and he didn’t get mad, he didn’t make me embarrassed And I thought you know, jesus is on the move in the hearts and minds of our kids And we should be celebrating that. We get scared and wrapped up in all these other things that our kids are facing, but there are these sweet moments that we also need to recognize that God can use our kids.
0:23:54 – Speaker 1
That is absolutely precious, you know, and I think about your son waking up with a nightmare. Like God was going to comfort him, no matter what. God was going to be there for him, but he invited his friend into this space where his friend got to serve him. How cool is that? Right, amazing. And so I just think it’s cool that we can all be used by God in certain ways to help others. And this kind of leads us into our third thing. Ok, so the first is the bandwagon mentality. The second was the pastor and his pride and how real that was in church culture. Not everything’s perfect because we’re all flawed over at church, but we’re trying, we should be trying. But number three is God can use anyone to accomplish his purpose Anyone.
If you know Greg Laurie, he’s a pastor out in California and I’ve followed him for years And I’ve never known his story. But he was a college kid back in the day of this Jesus revolution And really the story revolves around kind of him, honestly. And he was a teenager and he grew up with a mom who was addicted to drugs and alcohol. He was in bars when he was kid, dad wasn’t around. He grew up a rough childhood like rough And he stumbled upon the hippie movement and got involved in that and got into drugs and was spiraling, quite frankly, into a very dark place. And then he met the hippie pastor and the other pastor and gave his life to Jesus and became a pastor. He’s a pastor today. I mean, you can literally follow him on Twitter, and so I just love how it shows that throughout the movie And even the hippie you know, here he is walking barefoot one day on the side of the road in his vest, his clothes like his fringe, and his rainbows, and all the stuff, the love piece, all the things you know, and then, weeks later, he’s preaching, and we see that all throughout Scripture too.
All throughout Scripture, you know, like I think, about Mary, the Virgin Mary. God picked an unwed teenager to be the mother of Jesus. He’s telling us something here in the sense of no matter what you’ve done, no matter where you’ve been, i can raise you up, i can redeem you, i can restore you. You are a new creation in me And man. That is the hope, that is the identity that we want to live in, not in just getting swept up in some movement or some slogan, and that’s our whole identity, or that’s our whole thing of well-being. The identity should be focused on Jesus, the one who can restore, renew and use us for good.
0:26:33 – Speaker 2
If you knew Mandy and I back in the day, you would be laughing at the fact that we were here right now. Honestly, i will not give you details, but God can use anyone. Really is the message here. Whether you are flawed, whether you’ve done drugs, you have been through a divorce, whether you have been in jail, whether you just don’t even know anything about God, he can use you. If you say yes to a calling to the Holy Spirit speaking into your life, he wants to use us, and what a glorious opportunity to serve His purpose.
So we really hope that you take a chance to find this movie and watch it and see what you think. Do you agree with us? The bandwagon mentality, pastor in his pride, and that God can use anyone to accomplish His purpose? Those were the three major themes that really stood out to Mandy and I, and overall it was just a very well-made movie. It was a great story about Pastor Greg Laurie and the Jesus movement and where that came from and what it led to, and we’ll make for some great conversations in your family And we’d love to hear what you think too. Like I said, you can email us at admin at nexthuckorg, or you can always reach out to us and message us on social media.
0:27:52 – Speaker 1
Thank you so much for joining us, listening and sharing our podcast. Because of you, this show is in the top 5% of over 2.9 million podcasts.
0:28:04 – Speaker 2
We have lots of resources for you, from counseling to live events. Or if you have a show idea or a question for our team, visit our website at nexthuckorg. We’d love to hear from you.
0:28:15 – Speaker 1
At nextTalk. We’re more than cyber parenting. It’s conversations to connect. This podcast is not intended to replace the advice of a trained healthcare or legal professional or to diagnose, treat or otherwise render expert advice regarding any type of medical, psychological or legal problem. Listeners are advised to consult a qualified expert for treatment.
Transcribed by https://podium.page