Lessons From the Screen


I have been a J.R.R. Tolkien fan for a long time. I think the fascination began somewhere around the sixth grade. There was something magical about the land that he created, the language, the maps, and I fell in love with it all immediately. This weekend, my husband and I watched part one of the “The Hobbit” movie and I was transported back to a time when adventure and fantasy filled my mind with wonder.


I am happy to report that watching the film, I felt that same excitement and awe, even though I knew the story well. There was one line that Gandalf (the wizard), when asked why he would bring such a small hobbit like Bilbo Baggins on an adventure, where he replies, “I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay.” I thought that was such a beautiful sentiment. If you haven’t seen the movie or read the book, a hobbit is a small creature who does not like adventure, so for Gandalf to ask Bilbo to go on one is quite unusual.


His answer, however, reminded me that it is the small things that we do every day that keep our demons, our dragons and our monsters away. It’s not the grand gestures we make—those happen rarely in life—but the little things add up. For example, every hour an alcoholic or addict doesn’t drink or do drugs they are achieving a small victory. Likewise, every time a person with illness—physical, spiritual or mental—continues to fight, to pray and to live, despite the difficulties is another win.


What do you think? Is there something you do every day that means a great deal to you, even though it may seem small to others? Please share. Or is there a movie that you have seen that taught you a lesson about life?


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