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faith like potatoes – part 3 December 14, 2006

Posted by Cobus in South Africa, theology.

Sorry, it’s been a long time now since I started writing on faith like potatoes. But I’ve been struggling to write this last post. I already mentioned a lot about my discomfort, but started out saying I have mixed feelings. And I’m not just uncomfortable with the movie, but this is the more difficult part to write, for me at least.

Maybe the thing is this. Let’s talk about THE story, A story and NO story. Three possible reactions to the movie, three possible reactions to basically anything in life.

THE story – This is the absolute truth, this is reality. If your experience of reality is different, then the problem lies with you. Something a very good friend has also brought out in this story. This leads to stuff like people healing others from sickness, assuring them that they can stop using medicine, and if they don’t, then they simply don’t believe enough. The result sometimes being death.

NO story – This is basically the same as the previous one. This story has no truth in it, usually because of some well formulated rational, or not so rational, argument. It’s the same? Yes. The first options says that this story is the correct one, and if you differ from it, your wrong. This option says that some other story is the correct one, and since this story differ from it, it’s wrong. The danger in instance, I think, is that we limit God to our own experience.

A story – This is not some relativistic idea where every story is correct, and no one is allowed to question anything. But this means that we make space for a story that’s different from my own experience, but also ask that my story be brought on the table. My story differ a little from the movie, but still it was inspiring to hear another story. Although I was afraid of people making this movie THE new story, THE story you have to like and identify with to be a “good Christian”.

Personally, this was A inspiring story, although I couldn’t always identify with it. I know people who made this movie THE story, and some who made it NO story, and usually the one just cause the other to shout out louder. I gave you my story, it caused me to be more afraid of people making this THE story than those making it NO story, and so I gave you my story, the one differing a little from the experience of the movie characters.

faith like potatoes – part 1

faith like potatoes – part 2



1. tiaan - December 20, 2006

Hey Cobus
Our church is showing the movie on Friday night. I will tell you what my views are after I have watched it. I were just thinking (en verstaan my nou asb reg): aren’t you maybe just a tad too cynical about this kinda stuff? Remember, just because it doesn’t happen like that too us…but you made that point yourself. All I’m saying is: don’t be too sceptical about or too closed to miracles…they might be closer than you think!!
Mr T

2. Richard Metcalfe - January 11, 2007

Hi Cobus after reading your 3 part post on Faith Like Potatoes I understand where you are coming from but. I have the book which I have nearly finished and bought the dvd and I have to say that God works for the good of His people, ok the book is far better than the film and goes into the way God has worked in Angus Buchan’s life and most of all his ministry than what the film does. Most films that are based on true life accounts are dramatised to make it entertaining to the audience, but who are we to say what is true or not as we serve a higher power.if this bothers you that much go to Shalom and talk to the people there and write a part 4 as a conclusion to your post. By the way I believe in this wonderfull story.

3. Gary Wiest - January 12, 2007

I have not seen the movie, but the movie addition of the book was absolutely wonderful. I am looking forward to the movie, but I am sure it will not be as good as the book. What an encouragement to the Christian in his or her walk with God. God does still move today as He did with Moses in the parting of the sea. Praise Jesus :)!

4. Mal - March 14, 2007

Richard Metcalfe’s statement that ‘God works for the good of His people’ Is naturally true but the question needs to be asked how has he done this in the past and how does he do it now? In the past he had His people in slavery, in the desert and in ruins. All for the good of His people! Where does he have us now? What is our collective understanding of God’s story, as it stands now? This might help us in seeing Angus Buchan’s story as we should.

Sorry if this does not make sense but we need to seek a collective ‘or true’ understanding of our times otherwise we can contradict ourselves and all be correct.

5. Kowie - April 19, 2007

Yip, your’e right Mal – difficult to follow you. But then, I am slow, sorry.
Cobus, the visual effect of the movie is as you mention, not the best, but the story is whaau. I experienced it very positive and attend it in one of the big cinemas at Menlyn Centre. Firstly, the fact that the hall was full, was already strange, secondly the fact that it was a very, very quiet crowd coming out was also strange. And thirdly the fact that all (except one or two with glass eyes) came out with red – rimmed eyes, set my mind on thinking mode. Maybe this film is touching people. We need to believe in the mirrecals of God, we want to hear the message of God as it is proclaimed in Mark, Mattheus, Luke and John. Maybe we do not need philosophical nonsence about church history, religious science ect, ect, which seems to be the main topic of study. Maybe we need to hear the Good News – with the bad and nice parts, because we want to and we do believe in such a God as is portrayed in the movie. Personally – that is how my God works!

6. cobus - April 19, 2007

I didn’t feel comfortable in denying the stories portrayed in the movie (although others who have read the book state that the movie gets exagerated, I won’t know, haven’t read it yet). All I try to do is show that not everyone experience things in the same way, and we need to make room for that.

7. Chris - August 30, 2007

Dear All, I have had a chance to read all the comments and I must say this. God moves when we move. It is as simple as that. No faith means no movement from God. A lot of people fail to realise that God is a respector of faith, not need. Too many people treat God like that treat people, they think maybe God will help, or maybe He will not. God ALWAYS moves when we act in faith. So, everything that Angus has experienced we can also experience, if we are prepared to step out of operating in the world’s way of doing things. Remember, the Bible says that we may be in this world, but we are not of this world. This means, we are expected to operate and do things the way God wants us to. If we choose to expect God’s grace and power to move in our lives, then it shall be. If we choose to try and figure things out ourselves, then it shall also be. The Bible says what we loose on earth will be loosed in heaven, and what we bind on earth will be binded in heaven. Makes you think….!!

8. cobus - August 31, 2007

Well, then I guess it’s obvious that those of us experiencing things in a different way are un-faith-full. Do you maybe think we should prepare for hell as well?

Maybe I’m just not that good at putting God in a box and explaining exactly how God works. The God you painted would work good in a model of Newtonian physics. In Newtonian physics everything work with cause and effect. So, I believe (cause) and God acts (effect). If that works for you, fine, but I’m not sure if that is how the Bible did thing. But I’m not sure whether Newtonian physics is a good way of explaining God.

9. meg - September 4, 2007

I have watched this DVD about 5 times and each and every time I get something more of how great our God actually is. WOW, I grew up in Pietermaritzburg and in fact was a nurse in Greytown hospital for a time and yes it so truly authentic and so very “african”. God’s miricles are alive and yes they happen when we move and move in faith and with God. The movie sure has moved us in ways that are deep in our souls and I praise our Lord for that. Our life on the farm both is South Africa and Rhodesia was just like the movie, and I am so touched by Angus and Jill’s testamony.

10. Mike - October 21, 2007

Good comments, Cobus… the problem with great experiences — even miracles, and esp. miracles — is (i) that the world is full of all sorts of experiences, and we need something bigger (eg. an honest reading of the Scriptures) to evaluate these experiences, and not the other way around! (ii) they assume the role of Scripture, and are put forward as being beyond question. (iii) The person who experiences them usually ends up saying that you *must* have the same experience, or your faith is supsect.

This chap is coming out to take a conference here in Western Autralia in Feb. next year, and you comments and critque are important in helping us figure out what we’re in for. Looks to me as though it’s just another miracle-monger. We’ve seen it all before…

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