In 1954, I was taking proofs of advertising copy to the advertisers for their approvals. One of those places was the local movie theater...every day. I got real friendly with the manager who gave me free passes to the movies.....absolutely the best part of the whole job! When the blockbuster hit On the Waterfront was released that year.....I saw it 10 times!
I was sure I would be the next Marlon Brando! This was the tour de force that drove this young wannabe actor to attain those same heights.
There is a powerful scene (forgive me if I misquote any of it) but Terry Malloy (Brando) has just been picked up by his brother Charlie (Rod Steiger) who must convince Terry not to testify against the mob.....a few years before Terry was convinced by his brother to throw a fight for the mob and now is a nobody working the mob controlled waterfront. He was then used to set up a friend of his to be murdered who was about to rat on the mob......now he is the rat and if Charlie doesn't convince him, the mob will murder Terry just like they did the other guy.
We are in the back seat of the car and Terry rolls his eyes saying "Chah-lie..... you was my brudda, Chahlie...you shoulda looked out for me.....I coulda been somebody....I coulda been a contenda."
Such a powerful scene..... it sticks in my memory all these years..... I look at it now and it is different....today I see it loaded with spiritual truth. God says that you and I and each and every one of us is somebody. We are all contenders. Some how Satan, the deceiver, comes along and throws life at us....you'll never make it, take the shortcut, lie, cheat and steal, everybody else does, you'll never amount to anything, you're a bum..... That's what Johnny Friendly (Lee J. Cobb) calls Terry.....a bum (translated: you haven't got what it takes to be a contender!). That's what Satan tells us...... you're a bum.....you haven't got what it takes!
Terry's dream of being a great prizefighter was shattered when he took the dive. What was your dream that was shattered? Our shattered dreams are not the end.......they are only the beginning. Ellen is reading a book that has her all excited (she gets excited a lot!) :) The title is "Shattered Dreams"..... with an interesting sub-title that is absolutely true....."God's Unexpected Pathway To Joy"...... Of course it was sent to her by her sister, Jeanne. :)
We never have to think about the next book we need to read...we just wait till the next one from Jeanne!
God takes everything, every single thing, especially every shattered dream.....and turns it into something wonderful.....because, you know, He really isn't after making me happy, no matter how much we would like to think it is...... He is after having a relationship with me. I think I can safely say that after these almost 73 years (being a major big-time dreamer) that I have really had more than my share of shattered dreams......any time you want to talk about shattered dreams, please give me a call (allow plenty of time, the list is very long).....but I want you to know, I wouldn't trade any one of them for what He has given me out of those shattered dreams.....the incredible personal walk I have with My Father, with His Son Jesus and with His Holy Spirit......more than worth the trip.
Include Him in the next dream.....ask Him for His dream for your life....then get out of the way and let Him do all the work.....great way to live.