Why I love “The Shack” – A Brief Review

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Last Friday night, my husband and I joined a crowd of snuffling, shaking, teary eyed strangers watching The Shack. I  purposefully didn’t wear mascara and brought lots of Kleenex, but halfway through the movie I just gave up and let the tears flow. I’m a crier, and normally I feel a bit self-conscious blubbering in a public theater; but on Friday night, I was just one of the bunch. With my husband silently shaking to my right and an unknown man in his 50’s sobbing to my left, I felt right at home.

What I loved about The Shack:

  • I LOVE that God is not in a box. Watching The Shack forces you to consider your own “god box”. What things do we assume about God that are not actually Biblical? God is SO much MORE than we can ever imagine. It doesn’t hurt us to stretch our minds a little…in fact, it’s good for us. (People who are upset because two parts of the Trinity are portrayed by women need to realize that God is not a man either! There are verses in the Bible that describe both female and male attributes of God. God is not made in our image…we just happen to be made a little like Him!)
  • I love the relationship that exists between the Trinity, their inside jokes, laughter, care, etc. Obviously, we can’t even begin to fathom what that relationship actually looks like, but why not try and imagine?
  • One of the main themes is how much God loves the people He has created. Over and over Papa says, “I am especially fond of _________”. Finally Mac asks, “Is there anyone you aren’t especially fond of?” Papa thinks for a minute and then shakes her head, “No.” I left the theater just so convinced of God’s love for me, real and personal, even in the midst of the failure, sin, and hurt we experience daily in this broken world.
  • God’s involvement in our pain is a difficult subject. Why doesn’t He stop the suffering in this world if He is all-powerful? It’s a hard question to answer, but I thought the way this was handled in the movie was phenomenal. God never loses control and He is always with us, but He does not always cause our pain (although the Bible is pretty clear that sometimes He is behind it)…more of those God-things that blow my mind!

Things to consider when watching/reading The Shack:

  • The Shack is not written as doctrine or theology, it’s more like an allegory or parable. It’s a story that makes some great points. Read or watch it just like that, a story.
  • Obviously you can’t get all your theology about God from a movie or book. Realize that the author’s purpose to is share just a couple of God’s attributes not the sum total of His character.
  • You might not agree with everything you see or read. That’s okay! I don’t agree with all of it, but there are wonderful truths that I have taken away. I don’t see the point in stubbornly rejecting something because it’s not “perfect”.

In conclusion, go see The Shack! It’s absolutely worth it. You will be challenged and encouraged. Just make sure to bring Kleenex, or maybe a small towel. 😉

 

10 thoughts on “Why I love “The Shack” – A Brief Review

  1. I love the book and am looking forward to the film. It may not be found in cinemas (movie theaters) in Europe where we are at the moment, but Google Play Movies has it listed, though not available yet, so I’ll lay in a supply of tissues waiting for the day. ☺

    • You will love it! It’s not often that I think a movie is comparable to the book, but this might actually be better. I feel like it was streamlined with only the very best parts included. 😊

      • No, we have not seen it. We’ve heard similar negative reviews (copied below) but will make up my own mind when we see it.

        Thirteen Heresies in The Shack, written by Michael Youssef addresses 13 concerns with the novel and movie, and what the Bible has to say about them:

        1. God the Father was crucified with Jesus. Because God’s eyes are pure and cannot look upon sin, the Bible says that God would not look upon His own beloved Son as He hung on the Cross, carrying our sins (Habakkuk 1:13; Matthew 27:45).

        2. God is limited by His love and cannot practice justice. The Bible declares that God’s love and His justice are two sides of the same coin – equally a part of the personality and the character of God (Isaiah 61:8; Hosea 2:19).

        3. On the Cross, God forgave all of humanity, whether they repent or not. Some choose a relationship with Him, but He forgives them all regardless. Jesus explained that only those who come to Him will be saved (John 14:6).

        4. Hierarchical structures, whether they are in the Church or in the government, are evil. Our God is a God of order (Job 25:2).

        5. God will never judge people for their sins. The Word of God repeatedly invites people to escape from the judgment of God by believing in Jesus Christ, His Son (Romans 2:16; 2 Timothy 4:1-3).

        6. There is not a hierarchical structure in the Godhead, just a circle of unity. The Bible says that Jesus submitted to the will of the Father. This doesn’t mean that one Person is higher or better than the other; just unique. Jesus said, “I came to do the will of Him who sent me. I am here to obey my Father.” Jesus also said, “I will send you the Holy Spirit” (John 4:34, 6:44, 14:26, 15:26). 7. God submits to human wishes and choices. Far from God submitting to us, Jesus said, “Narrow is the way that leads to eternal life.” We are to submit to Him in all things, for His glory and because of what He has accomplished for us (Matthew 7:13-15).

        8. Justice will never take place because of love. The Bible teaches that when God’s love is rejected, and when the offer of salvation and forgiveness is rejected, justice must take place or God has sent Jesus Christ to die on the cross for nothing (Matthew 12:20; Romans 3:25-26).

        9. There is no such a thing as eternal judgment or torment in hell. Jesus’ own description of hell is vivid. It cannot be denied (Luke 12:5, 16:23).

        10. Jesus is walking with all people in their different journeys to God, and it doesn’t matter which way you get to Him. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, and no one will come to the Father but by me” (John 14:6).

        11. Jesus is constantly being transformed along with us. Jesus, who dwells in the splendor of heaven, sits at the right hand of God, reigning and ruling the universe. The Bible says, “In Him there is no change, for He is yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 11:12, 13:8; James1:17).

        12. There is no need for faith or reconciliation with God because everyone will make it to heaven. Jesus said, “Only those who believe in me will have eternal life” (John 3:15, 3:36, 5:24, 6:40).

        13. The Bible is not true because it reduces God to paper. The Bible is God-breathed. Sure, there were many men through 1,800 years who put pen to paper (so to speak), each from different professions and different backgrounds, but the Holy Spirit infused their work with God’s words. These men were writing the same message from Genesis to Revelation. If you want to read more about the place of Christ in the Scripture, read “We Preach Christ” (2 Timothy 3:16).

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      • Thanks for your thoughts, Uncle Jim. I’ve read similar negative reviews. And if someone wants to pick it apart they can. It’s definitely not Scripture…just a story. But I still loved it!

  2. Thanks Christie,

    What a great movie! Jan and I just saw it. I would never have guessed that Hollywood could handle the subject of forgiveness and God’s plan of redemption so well…a few “liberties” not withstanding.

    Did you know that Focus On The Family gave THE SHACK four out of five stars. Their writeup can be seen in the link below: http://www.pluggedin.com/movie-reviews/the-shack-2017

    Thanks to your encouraging “Foolish” blog, Jan and I probably would never have seen the movie. Keep up the good work young lady. Uncle Jim

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  3. Can’t wait for it to come out here in the UK; that’s not gonna happen until June and even then I imagine it will be typically British low-key stuff (the release, that is).

    Much of the critique agains this movie and the book has been based on those ‘thirteen heresies’ headings, and some people have even written their own critiques based on the ‘thirteen heresies’ rather than actually going to see the movie or reading the book.

    I think this movie (if it is anything like the book, which I have heard it is) will free people up to love the wonderful, loving, marvellous God they never even knew existed. Up until now, He’s always been portrayed as angry and vindictive. I am going to publish a set of blog posts praising the virtues of this book shortly.

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