everyday homeschooling blog


Nov 7, 2012

Once Bedford Falls, Now Pottersville -- Feeling Sad? Me, Too

MaryAnn Gaver

Dear Homeschooling Moms,

      As I stand at the back door of my kitchen, coffee cup in hand, a song comes to my mind -- the beautiful hymn It Is Well by Horatio G. Spatford. Listen to this last stanza:  O Lord, haste the day when the faith shall be sight, the clouds be rolled back as a scroll, the trump shall resound and the Lord shall descend, "Even so," --- it is well with my soul...

      I didn't get to see Jay this morning because he left early for work, but next to the coffee pot found a little blue post-it note:  "Hi Mare, It's a sad day for America today...but Jesus reminded us to 'take courage; I have overcome the world.' Have a blessed day in Him. love you --- Jay."   

     Okay, I can't help it. I'm sad. Very sad. I really thought that Romney and Ryan would have victory last night. I'm definietly struggling this morning...

     Between Thanksgiving & Christmas our family likes to watch Frank Capra's It's A Wonderful Life starring Jimmy Stewart. I'm sure that you're familiar with the movie, but for those who aren't --Stewart plays the conflicted character, George Bailey, a young man who can't wait to leave home to "build things, plan modern cities" and shake off the dust from his home town of Bedford Falls. The problem is that George's dad hopes that his sons will keep the family business (Bailey Brothers Building and Loan) going. The dad, after all, had spent his whole life helping men get "their own fireplaces and a roof over their heads." The problem is that Harry goes off to college and to war leaving George to hold the business down day after day, year after year. Forgoing college, he continues to long for his three favorite sounds: "anchor chains, train whistles and plane motors."

     A constant thorn in the flesh, the evil, greedy, "hard-skulled, money grubbing buzzard", Mr. Potter, is constantly threatening to close down the Bailey Savings and Loan causing ongoing frustration to George as he carries out his dad's 25-year tradition of helping people get out of Potter's slums. To George, it's about people like Joseppi Martini -- helping him to own a house instead of renting one.

   At the peak of the movie, one of the bank's employees (George's Uncle Billy) loses $8,000 of the bank's money, causing George to despair and to stoop to ask Potter for help. All along, Potter keeps secret the fact that he stole the money from Uncle Billy while at the bank.

      In George's desperation, he makes a heartfelt plea to God, "Father, show me the way." Still discouraged, he heads to a bridge ans jumps into the tumultuous waves before being rescued by Clarence, a kind-hearted guardian angel who hasn't yet "earned his wings." Clarence makes a committment that he will help George -- and in exchange George will thus help Clarence earn his wings. George doesn't buy the whole angel thing, and quips, "I wish I had never been born. I'm worth more dead than alive and if it hadn't been for me, people would be better off." 

      Clarence continues to claim that he's the answer to George's prayers, and sets off to prove that if it hadn't been for George's influence in Bedford Falls, the town simply wouldn't be the same. So George gets his wish in seeing how life would be had he not been born -- proving Clarence's statement that, "Each man's life touches so many other lives." 

   One of the most dramatic scenes is where George runs through the town one fateful night.  Bedford Falls is now Pottersville!  There's no Savings & Loan building. Instead of peace, there's chaos and disorder in the town -- night club lights blinking...

    Here's the point:  Even if our country is turning from Bedford Falls into Pottersville, we must remain faithful and must still stand up for what is right. I'm reminded that our hope is in Christ. That He is our peace. 

     "These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace.  In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world." 

John 16:33

   May the Lord bless you & carry you through this day.  Stay faithful in teaching!