My Two Cents
December 8, 2019, 12:00 AM

Anyone remember a movie that came out a couple years ago called “The Florida Project”?

 

The film gets its name from Walt Disney’s vision to remake much of Central Florida with his iconic Walt Disney World. For all the years Disney’s massive project was on the drawing board, it was just “The Florida Project”.

 

The film tells the story of a different kind of Florida project, as it gives us a slice of life in and around a central Florida hotel called the Magic Castle.

 

During the late 60’s and early 70s the Magic Castle might have been used by people who were visiting Disney World on a limited budget. It was a simple place to stay…a Rt. 66 style motel on the side of the busy highway that leads right into the park.

 

Over the years, though, what was once a reasonably priced family motel became what a whole lot of hotels like it have become- a precarious place to live for people who may have subsistence level jobs (or maybe not) but who are essentially, homeless.

 

Stop for breakfast at Denny’s on your way into the Magic Kingdom to avoid paying the exorbitant price of eating with Cinderella and you just might be waited on by a woman who is living with her daughter in a room in the Magic Castle.

 

For those of us who love to go to the Happiest Place on Earth this film takes a little of the joy out of the experience. Right there, in the shadow of the Magic Kingdom where all is well, is a different kind of kingdom typified by the Magic Castle Motel where kids who will never be able to afford to visit the park run around unsupervised while their parents try to hustle up enough   money for their next night’s lodgings.

 

This Sunday’s scripture text is Isaiah’s vision we now call the Peaceable Kingdom- the Peaceable Realm. It’s compelling, but even Isaiah would admit that it’s a world dreamt up to soothe the troubled spirits of his people who were enduring the humiliation of being held captive. In other words, Isaiah paints a picture of a Magic Kingdom for those who were living in the Magic Castle.

 

And so, as we think about Isaiah’s Peaceable Realm, let’s remember that most of us live in realms that aren’t too shabby while some of us are forced to live in the Magic Castle. A whole lot of people can only dream of the lives we have. The Peaceable Realm is a beautiful thing too dream about. But while we are dreaming, we may want to pay attention to those forced to live just outside of its gates.

 

Welcome to worship!