Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:4-7 NKJV
Is it just me or should someone have shared this verse with Chicken Little? Poor guy! He was simply trying to warn everyone of an impending doom right? He should have to suffer from all of the ridicule and pain shouldn’t he?
You know, I think part of a child’s DNA is composed of anxiety. Granted, all of them show it differently, but they all have it. Whether they are anxious about their grades, friends, audition, or in our household, the daily schedule, anxiety commands a lot of our children’s thought processes. I do not believe I would be going too far on a limb to say that most of us never grow out of it.
So how do you use the movie Chicken Little to discuss Phil 4 and anxiety? There are a couple of key lessons to highlight with your child as you watch the movie:
1. Anxiety is like a cold, it spreads quickly. Notice how the entire town goes absolutely crazy when Chicken Little’s first episode occurs. It becomes a pandemic very quickly. A recent example of anxiety spreading over something that may or may not have been something terribly concerning would be that of the swine flu. It seemed like in only a few short hours, the world was going to be taken to its knees by this new virus. Only three weeks later, I see very little about this all-powerful flu… so would that be 2009’s “The Sky is Falling!” Anxiety spreads and makes things worse, Phil 4 tells us not to be anxious!
2. The Bible teaches us to hold fast to Christ, He gives us the ability to be anxious for nothing, for He is our Shepherd. Spend some time explaining to your child the role and characteristics of a plain ole shepherd and then help them understand how Christ is the Good Shepherd. He said, “my sheep know my voice.”
3. Our anxieties are funny to God. One of the things I love about this movie is how it accurately portrays false anxiety. We can usually run around like a chicken with our head cut off when really, we should spend time resting in the promise that Christ will never forsake us. Help your children understand that to Christ, our anxieties are sometimes if not most of the time crippling to our faith. Faith is the ability to let go of our anxieties and cling more to the hope and promise we have in Christ’s sovereignty.
Sure, we all have anxieties and some would say they are inevitable and inescapable, but Christ told us to “cast our cares upon him.” Part of being a dad, uncle, older brother or whatever type of leader you are, is having the ability to teach children to trust in Christ alone. If you’re like me, maybe if you say it enough to them, you will start to remind yourself of this solid, yet simple truth.
If you would like more in this series, please be sure to check out the other articles in Using Movies to Witness.
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About the Writer:
Trent Cotton has spent a number of years in management and business consulting. After spending some time in the field, he joined the HR department, beginning in recruiting and eventually serving as the Department Head of HR for one of the major lines of business. With such a varied background, he works to bring all of these together to help churches and other Christian organizations incorporate some common business practices into their ministries to enable them to better serve the Kingdom. He currently works for SourcePointe, an HR Outsourcing Agency while continuing to own and operate Christian Management Consulting as a ministry. In his free time, he also writes a lot on Church Development as a Church Consultant.
As a husband and father of three, Trent Cotton has a passion surrounding the role Christian Men are to play in their families, communities, churches and businesses. This particular blog is dedicated to helping men take back the role that we have lost in society.