Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Mission to Make a Difference
Mission to Make a Difference
By Brenda Black
I met a man with more than a plan – he is on a mission. Ted Baehr is Founder and Publisher of MOVIEGUIDE®: The Family Guide to Movies and Entertainment and Chairman of the Christian Film & Television Commission® ministry. His lengthy resume includes: “noted critic, educator, lecturer, and media pundit...with his life’s purpose to be used of God to redeem the values of the media while educating audiences on how to use discernment in selecting their entertainment.”
Dr. Baehr has the goods to back up his campaign. Young men and women ages 12-25 soar up the charts in percentage points when asked if they prefer movies with foul language and explicit sexuality. Before you quickly assume that they must, the data validates quite the opposite. High numbers on this survey mean they don't like it. Baehr presents overwhelming statistical proof from massive data collection that the majority of people in every age category is sick of filth on the big screen.
Baehr's mission is to show movie studios the costly error of their contrary assumptions and present them with powerful tools that will lead to more noble entertainment for viewers and higher box office sales for the movie makers. He is making significant progress. You've probably applauded some of the results of his influence by enjoying films like “Up,” “The Incredibles,” “Blind Side,” “Facing the Giants,” “Fireproof,” and the adorable “Despicable Me” along with hundreds of other family-friendly productions.
Dr. Baehr's positive accomplishments and his prowess are impressive. But having visited with this humble and kind gentleman several times over the course of three days and getting to know him as a brother in Christ, what I love most is that he's real in a world of make believe. Though he rubs elbows with the rich and famous of Hollywood, he is just as comfortable chatting with me. He even wanted to have his picture taken with Pam and me to help promote I Stand. This week he is flying to Korea to share the data one day and meeting with the head of Walt Disney on another. Yet, the glitz and notoriety is not what compels him. Baehr is going to bat for you and me and every generation that longs to be spared from vile, degrading images. He tells top executives, script writers and actors that the best movies are not packed with political agendas, shock and horror. Instead, they have “extraordinary themes of redemption, self-sacrifice, compassion, and love wrapped in fun-filled family entertainment.”
Between lunch and more workshops, I asked Dr. Baehr how he found time to do so much for so many. He smiled sweetly and simply answered, “I just want to help.” He added, “Nothing is beyond God's redemption.” Baehr is a man who knows the mission and is bound and determined to take back territory for God's glory.
Most likely, the rest of us won't be shaking bushes in Tinsel Town, but we can press forward right where we live and work together to claim, reclaim, conquer or guard territory for the Lord. It begins at home. Make wise choices for your family. Use MOVIEGUIDE® before you rent a DVD or buy a ticket to the movies. Make sure you realize your witness matters at school or on the job. Stand up for what is right and decent! Never compromise truth for lies. When we demand decency and behave according to such standards, we can rest assured that we are making a difference.
Dr. Baehr's greatest weapons are the facts he wields when he faces the production giants. Evidence from real people in the real world who want real value in their entertainment is hard to ignore. Likewise, genuine Christians make indelible differences when they live genuine lives of faith in full view of a watching world. The cameras may not be rolling and I may not be a big star, but I must shine like one if I want to help and not hurt God's mission.
Two actors choosing the high road give me hope that more good stuff is about to come out of Hollywood.
Left is Torry Martin - a delightfully hilarious story teller and comedian who loves the Lord. And on the far right is Michael Joiner, who will star in a new release The Grace Card, Feb. 2011.
**Hope to see you at Outback Hair Salon, Butler, MO, Nov. 22, 5-9 p.m. for Ladies' Night Out! I'll have all three of my books available and I'd be happy to autograph and personalize any that you buy as gifts for dear ones on your Christmas list or for yourself! Pam Morgan will be joining me and bringing the Morgans' latest album, recorded live. See you soon!