A night at the movies (and a slightly different post)

2 Mar

Many of the titles for posts on this blog have been inspired by movies or music – and maybe there’s a reason for that. Sometimes, movies and music are the ways that God uses to speak to us… a quiet whisper in our ear that leads to something more. I have a huge collection of movie quotes that I have built up – everything from

image‘You’re better than this. Don’t just think you are.. KNOW you are’ (Morpheus to Neo in ‘The Matrix’)







image"Never trust spiritual leader who doesn’t dance". (Mr Miyage in ‘The Next Karate Kid’) (and a quote I take very seriously….)




Often I find myself pulled up short by something in the media, something on the screen, something I hear in a mall, or a cafe..and that, I guess, is how I ended up here. I’m posting this on the Explore The Adventure blog because you might like it. But also, because it’s increasingly difficult to separate the exciting whirlwind world tour journey that I’m on from the even more thrilling journey of personal discovery that I find myself in. I hope that’s OK with you all!

Anyway, I’ve told this story a few times, but not on this blog so I thought I would post I, if only to prove that I don’t take myself seriously!! And yet, it’s part of my story, and so I am actually fiercely proud of it too.


I was working at a major multinational’s IT operations centre, based in the North West of England. As usual, I was spending a few days staying up there for meetings and just to make sure that my team didn’t forget who I was.

I’m not a great one for eating and drinking on my own when I travel, so I would either go down to Borders and Starbucks and read three or four books, or I’d go to the movies. The company was going through a tough time, as they were reorganising, so I’d had a hard day – the cinema and a couple of hours being frivolously entertained beckoned me. Little did I know that a few hours later my life would have changed as the Universe took drastic action to make sure I was listening….

imageI’d settled down to see ‘Wimbledon’ with Kirsten Dunst and Paul Bettany (yes, I know, hardly a tough guy’s ‘action feature’ but I’ve always had a soft spot for ‘chick-flicks’ (and Kirsten Dunst)) (and if I can ever be as good an orator as Bettany was in ‘A Knight’s Tale’ then I will be happy!

And that story of a British long shot Wimbledon contender in his final tournament, chasing his dream (and winning the girl along the way) awoke something inside me. Odd, that… It seemed that I wanted to be so much more than the successful IT guru I had become, and that my dream was rapidly escaping me… but wouldn’t it be great to be able to change people’s lives? Wouldn’t it be great to actually take a decision to step out of the 9-5? Wouldn’t it be great to do something amazing with my life?

I filed it away under ‘interesting to think about’, finished my popcorn and wandered out of the theatre.

imageWhat I wasn’t expecting was the series of body blows that awaited me outside. I’d obviously got myself into a very receptive state, as the first movie poster outside proudly advertised the Jet Li movie ‘Hero’. ‘Hero’? I shrugged the thought off and walked on.





imageLever Brothers’ advertising had obviously got itself some new locations, because the next poster I walked past loudly proclaimed ‘Bold’. ‘That’s odd’, I thought to myself.







imageThe next poster for the Keira Knightley/ Clive Owen movie ‘King Arthur’ dared me to ‘Rule Your Destiny’ and my mind had gone into overdrive by this point. I made a mental note to go for a quiet drink to work out what was going on and maybe come to some conclusions about what was next for my career.




Nothing had prepared me for what happened next… the poster that changed my life… My eye was caught by a few words in the bottom of a colourful kids’ movie poster. ‘A hero will rise….’ it said – and suddenly I was stopped dead in my tracks – almost unable to breathe and certainly unable to move. Too many significant messages in too short a space of time meant I couldn’t ignore them all. Call it fate, or destiny, call it God speaking – you can call it what you like, but at that point I knew without a shadow of a doubt that my new career beckoned me. I needed to do the heroic thing, be bold, rule my destiny…and if the movie was anything to go by I might even get the girl as well.


imageI suppose you’ll want to know what that last poster was advertising, won’t you? I’m not sure I should tell you – but you’ve been good enough to stick with my story so far, so perhaps I should let you in on the secret. Spongebob Squarepants.

Yes, my new career has been created on the back of a cartoon character. Many of my friends would say that’s pretty reasonable.




And that set in train a whole set of events in which I know I have been held safe in the hands of God – financial problems, business failure, world tour, a new career, a new puprose… all of that can be traced back to that one fateful evening – an evening in which I stepped up to a new vision of myself as a hero, as someone who was going to create their destiny rather than just respond to events, someone who was prepared to take a risk in order to achieve something worthwhile.

I haven’t seen all of that yet – just glimpses and premonitions, echoes from a future yet to come… and yet that future is certain as I move into the next part of my life… and it’s incredibly exciting.

So for you – what’s the next step on the adventure? What are you hearing that you’re choosing to ignore? Where do you need to step up – to take a risk? It might be scary, it might leave you feeling vulnerable – but it will be the best thing you have ever done.

As Mark Twain famously said:

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did so. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."

Will you join me on that exploration?

One Response to “A night at the movies (and a slightly different post)”

  1. Lisa Marie Reynolds March 2, 2011 at 9:51 pm #

    Well Tim…. you did get to the ocean floor out in Australia, so I’m guessing Sponge Bob Square Pants could be just as much a sign as The Matrix or the Bold ad…. As ‘they’ say…. ‘God moves in mysterious ways!’

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